HHSC Observes National American Sign Language Day

National American Sign Language (ASL) Day is celebrated on April 15 and highlights the various modes of communication used by people who are deaf, hard of hearing or deafblind.

National ASL Day is an opportunity to celebrate and raise awareness of ASL and its importance in U.S. communities. The day coincides with Deaf History Month in April, as established by the National Association of the Deaf.

According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2018, about 1 million people, or 3.3% of the Texas population, were identified as deaf or having severe hearing loss.

ASL is a visual language that communicates through hand movements, facial expressions and body movements. It has its own linguistic features, such as word formation, word order, grammar and syntax rules. ASL is the primary language used by many people who are deaf, hard of hearing or deafblind.

It is important to note that ASL is not a universal language, and different countries use different sign languages. Like spoken languages, ASL has regional variations and dialects.

Through its Training and Education program, HHS Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services help connect people to resources and services, raise awareness, and improve communication access.