British Sign Language (BSL) is the preferred language of deaf people in the UK for whom English may be a second or third language
BSL is a language in its own right, with its own grammar, syntax and vocabulary. It has its own dialects and rich variation.
BSL users refers to people whose first or preferred language is BSL, including those who receive the language in a tactile form due to sight loss.
BSL is the first or preferred language of some deaf people. It is also used by many people who are not deaf, for example, relatives and friends of deaf people and sign language interpreters.
There are currently approximately 1,717 active users of BSL in Glasgow City according to the last Census in 2011. The Centre for Sensory Impairment Partnership (CSIP) estimates it might be as high as 2,000 active users. There is also a significant support network who may not necessarily be captured in Census figures and service estimates.
The British Sign Language (Scotland) Act 2015 and the British Sign Language National Plan 2017 - 2023 required public bodies in Scotland to publish local action plans by October 2018 and on a six yearly basis thereafter, showing how they will promote and support British Sign Language (BSL). This is the first BSL National Plan of its kind in the UK.
Glasgow Council Family has developed a plan around some key themes identified by the Scottish Government, Service Users, Services and Partners; outlining key areas for action over the next 6 years;
Across all Services
Family Support, Early Learning and Childcare
Training, Work and Social Security
Health (including social care), Mental Health and Wellbeing
Culture and the Arts
The Scottish Government will also require that Glasgow publish an interim progress report in 2020 based on the local plan, which will help to refine some of the actions we will deliver by 2023.
Glasgow BSL Action Plan Video Links
Glasgow City Council email: BSL@glasgow.gov.uk
Glasgow City Council telephone number 0141 287 0411