British Sign Language (BSL) Plan for Edinburgh 2018-24

Today, the City of Edinburgh Council launches our first ever British Sign Language (BSL) Plan for Edinburgh 2018-24.

BSL 2018-24


The BSL Plan for Edinburgh is a joint project between the City of Edinburgh Council and the Edinburgh Health & Social Care Partnership. Our plan follows the same structure of the national plan and focuses on ensuring BSL users and their families have equal access to services that are welcoming, inclusive, fair and focused on their individual needs.

Our BSL Plan was approved by the Council’s Corporate Policy & Strategy Committee in October 2018 and focuses on improving services across six themes:

  • Family Support, Early Learning and Childcare
  • School Education
  • Training, Work and Social Security
  • Health (Including Social Care), Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Culture and the Arts
  • Democracy

Consultation and Plan Development

To ensure we were focusing on BSL users’ priorities, we undertook extensive consultation with key stakeholders of the language. This included people who are deaf and BSL users, their families & friends, Interpreters and those with an academic interest in the BSL language. The consultation covered a range of channels and locations such as weekend drop in events, online surveys, Facebook & Twitter posts. A reference group of BSL users from a range of different backgrounds was established to ensure the plan was meaningful and focused on real world priorities.

The plan was developed by a project team from across a range of services and specialisms. This included colleagues from the Lifelong Learning service, Health & Social Care, Economic Development, Education, Digital & ICT, Customer Services, Communications, Equality & Rights, Strategy & Insight and Procurement.

Next Steps…

While the plan is now launched, this is not the end of the road. The Council and the Edinburgh Health & Social Care Partnership have already begun implementing the priorities and actions developed over the last year. We are due to report our progress in two years’ time to the Scottish Government.

The full plan can be downloaded and a British Sign Language version will be available and uploaded here soon. 


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