Sign language to be used to interpret Prime Minister's Questions

5 February 2020, 00:01

Sign language will be used to interpret PMQs for the first time
Sign language will be used to interpret PMQs for the first time. Picture: PA
Nick Hardinges

By Nick Hardinges

Sign language will be used to interpret Prime Minister's Questions for the very first time on Wednesday.

The House of Commons will trial a sign language interpretation of PMQ's on Parliament's website this week.

Interpreters will be working at an in-house studio on the parliamentary estate throughout the duration of the half-hour long scrutiny session.

National and international broadcasters will show coverage of the event, however British Sign Language will be used.

The new Commons Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, expressed his "delight" that deaf people would now have the opportunity to follow proceedings.

He said: "Everyone deserves to be able to follow our flagship event of the week - so I am delighted that we will have sign language interpreters to make this a reality for deaf people.

"This initiative chimes with my commitment to make our parliamentary proceedings accessible and as clear as possible to everyone.

"I would like to thank all those who have worked to make this happen."

Penny Mordaunt became the first minister to use sign language in Parliament back in 2018, when she held the role of international development secretary.

Ms Mordaunt signed while answering her department's oral questions at the despatch box in the Commons.

Labour MP Dawn Butler was also praised for using sign language when asking a question in the House of Commons in 2017 about giving it legal status.

Comments

Loading...

Happening Now