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RTÉ cancelled its sign language broadcast of the national anthem during the All Ireland Final

Members of the deaf community held a protest over RTÉ’s coverage of major events earlier this week.

Image: Sam Boal

RTÉ CANCELLED ITS Irish Sign Language (ISL) broadcast of the national anthem during the All Ireland Football final because it was unable to secure the services of a signer.

The national broadcaster had planned to simulcast a signing of the entire anthem on RTÉ News Now ahead of Dublin v Tyrone in Croke Park today.

However, it said in a statement this afternoon that no signer was available for a full in-studio signing.

“Signing ISL for Broadcast is a specialist skill and the number of signers is limited,” RTÉ said.

Over recent days, RTÉ has contacted many signers, both within and outside our rosters. Unfortunately no signer has been able to make themselves available for a full in-studio signing, which will now not take place.

Earlier this week members of the deaf community held demonstrations outside RTÉ sites in Dublin and Cork over the broadcaster’s Irish Sign Language provision on programming.

The protesters complained that RTÉ only showed the ISL anthem for a few seconds on television during the All Ireland Hurling Final.

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The broadcaster said that the on-pitch signing of the anthem will be reflected in the live coverage of the match on RTÉ 2.

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Ceimin Burke

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