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Sign Of The Times

Deaf Association of New Zealand
8 November 2006
Media release

For the first time the story of New Zealand Sign Language, the visual language of New Zealand's Deaf Community, has been captured.

"Sign of the Times" by Victoria Manning and Paul Wolffram documents the Deaf Community's long battle to have their language recognised as an indigenous language of New Zealand. New Zealand Sign Language became New Zealand's third official language on Thursday 6 April 2006.

Deaf Association NZ's Chief Executive Rachel Noble commends Victoria and Paul for capturing the essence of New Zealand Sign Language through the eyes of those who use sign language on a daily basis.

In "Sign of the Times", we hear from many members of the Deaf community as they share their experiences with sign language and what it means to them. We have an insight to the grammatical features of the language, the views of parents of deaf children, and an explanation of the unique features of the signs which have developed naturally within the Maori Deaf community.

The documentary captures the aspirations of the Deaf community. The viewer is drawn into the emotion of the moment in the conclusion at Parliament as New Zealand Sign Language became officially recognised.

Ends

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