Policy on language

Adjacent Space celebrates the diverse richness of human communication; humans sign, speak, use tactile signed languages, write, and use braille. Each of these forms of communication deserve space in our culture.

 

The spectrum of signing in America includes standardized ASL, Black ASL, pro tactile ASL, regional dialects from across the US, and more. 

The spectrum of English in America includes standardized English, African American Vernacular English, regional dialects, braille, and more. 

 

All of these examples, and others not mentioned, are equally valid and equally sacred forms of human expression and connection. 

 

Every member of our community uses a combination of these forms of communication. All members of our community, and all forms of language they use, are equally valid and equally sacred. 

 

We believe in creating spaces where the spectrum of visual-gestural languages are validated as human languages, celebrated as part of human culture, and normalized in everyday life. The racially and culturally diverse Deaf, deafblind, and hard-of-hearing communities have a right to live, work, and play by using their chosen form of communication; the more we advocate for this right, the richer our world becomes.

Action

We support our diverse multilingual community in 3 ways

  1. We achieve this in our own work; our board uses ASL and written English in our day to day planning and advocacy

    1. We create this by hosting virtual and in-person community events where the spectrum of visual-gestural languages are prioritized and celebrated. 

  2. We recognize that connection between distinct communities and language groups requires an ecosystem of linguistically, racially, and culturally diverse accessibility service providers. 

    1. As a board, we work with interpreters to connect with non-signing entities in our community. On our website, we aim to have our content presented in both English and ASL. When state entities provide emergency information, we ask interpreters to provide translated summaries for the community. 

    2. We are committed to work with linguistically and racially diverse deaf, hearing, and CODA interpreters to interpret our meetings and to translate our projects. It is our goal to pay these interpreters appropriately for their work. 

    3. If you or someone you know would like to see what interpreting and translating opportunities we have, email us at info@adjacentspace.org

    4. If you or someone you know would like to donate to support our ability to pay the interpreters we work with, click here

  3. We support non-signing individuals or entities in their efforts to learn from deaf-led ASL classes. If you or someone you know would like to learn from a deaf-led ASL class, click here.