Today, the Rwanda National Union for Deaf (RNUD) counts 50,000 deaf persons across the country and only 40 persons are trained to interpret with sign language. Emmanuel Ndayisaba, the Executive Secretary of National Council for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD) said by the time the sign language dictionary is done next month, they plan to train more people to interpret sign language to facilitate accessibility to communication to deaf persons. “In September, the sign language dictionary will be done and we can go further in the process of printing and continuing the advocacy of making it an official language,” he said. If considered an official language, more public and private places will make provision for persons with hearing impairments. However, Dolly Kagenza, sign language interpreter said that sign language skills would be ideal for every Rwandan to possess “since we meet these people on different occasions and in different places.” The New Times maps out places that are of priority to require sign language interpreters. 1. Media People with hearing impairment miss out on different information whether educational, current affairs, entertainment. So far, only the national broadcaster, RBA, has a sign language interpreter and this is only for news bulletins and some selected programmes once in a while. “We need interpreters not only on Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA) but on every broadcaster in the country,” said Kagenza. RNUD has a YouTube channel that only interprets cabinet communique and some of Covid-19 updates which many say is a step in the right direction towards inclusivity. 2. Healthcare services There is a need for a dedicated health worker who can interpret with sign language to also maintain patient-doctor confidentiality. Currently, not all health facilities have an interpreter, which implies that a deaf person needs to be accompanied by someone who can communicate on their behalf when going for consultations. This, therefore, impedes their right to privacy. Activists have said that since it may be a challenge to have these interpreters at every medical facility, at least some few may have them at the beginning such that the deaf can go there. 3. Legal services Ndayisaba said that people with hearing impairment need to be facilitated in legal matters as one of priority places that require sign language. It includes reporting a crime, explaining themselves before law or when summoned, attending a court session among others. Lack of this may impinge on their right to justice. 4. Financial activities Banking services, insurance, mobile money services, pharmacies and other commercial services. “On a daily basis, deaf people have a need to communicate when acquiring any commercial service, for example buying something from marketplaces or boutiques is a challenge for them,” said Ndayisaba. 5. Public and communal amenities Persons with hearing loss need assistance when it comes to getting information that is necessary on a daily basis especially when in need of public services. Some include local government services, most of which are provided at grass root offices and Irembo agents, public transport, religious communities and cultural entities, etc. “The local government has to be deliberate when providing their services to be more inclusive,” said Kagenza Rwanda Basic Education Board will roll out a curriculum that will be part of a unit called special needs and inclusive education. The curriculum will see the introduction of Braille and sign language in schools to cater for persons with visual impairment and the ones with hearing loss.