WORLDSIGN | Massive Power Outage, Religious Symbols Ban, Sign Language Is Big!, and more stories!

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Dawn: On Sunday, people in
Argentina and Uruguay woke up to darkness. The power outage
lasted 14 hours. Subways and commuter trains
came to a stop, internet and telecommunications were
affected, water supplies were cut,
and shops had to close. Patients dependent on home
medical equipment had to go to hospitals which
ran on generators. The cause of the massive
power outage is still under investigation. -It was speculated a fallen
tree branch or lightning may have affected a transmission
line on interconnected power grid affecting
neighboring countries as a possible cause of
the power outage. The power grid had,
however, been in a state of disrepair for many years as
electricity rates have not increased to provide the
needed funds for maintenance of the grid. Alessio: Former president
of the northeastern Africa country of Sudan,
Omar al-Bashir reappeared in public for questioning by
prosecutors in a corruption investigation on Sunday. Al-Bashir, who was
overthrown on April 11 after 16 weeks of street protests
against his 30 year rule, is accused of possessing
large amounts of illegally obtained monies in
foreign currencies. -Sudan has been in a
political crisis since April as protest organizers and
the military could not agree on who to include
on the transitional legislative body. The military is insisting
that they be elected, and not appointed,
to govern the country. Dawn: On Sunday, the
province of Quebec in Canada passed a law prohibiting
government employees in positions of authority –
including teachers, judges, and police officers
from wearing religious symbols i.e.
the kippah, turban or hijab. This bill included
provisions that allows inspection of workplaces to
ensure compliance with the law, and discipline those
who do not follow the law. Public servants cannot
provide services with their faces covered. -Civil rights groups have
filed a motion asking the Provincial Supreme Court to
suspend and declare the law invalid as it would infringe
on religious minorities and constitutional rights of
Canadians to express their religious values
freely in Quebec. Alessio: Last Sunday,
Deaf streamer, Soleil “Ewok” Wheeler competed in the
second-ever “Fortnite Celebrity Pro-Am” in the
California state of Los Angeles in the USA with
football quarterback player Kurt Benkert of Atlanta
Falcons as her teammate. Benkert learned American
Sign Language (ASL) for the matchup and communicated
with Ewok via Facetime and private chat. Since a Fortnite stream in
March, Ewok, 13 years old skyrocketed in popularity
amassing over 136,000 followers on Twitch becoming
an icon and inspiration to deaf and hard of hearing
gamers across the world. They raised $20,000 USD
which was donated towards youth programs at the
National Association of the Deaf in the USA. Ewok was able to thank
streamer TimTheTatMan in person for hosting
her stream last March. “I’m so impressed with Epic
Games how they accommodated me as a Deaf gamer” Ewok
tweeted, “I’m so thankful for all that Epic Games has
done for me and the Deaf community.” “They learned
signs to communicate with me and embraced who I am as
a Deaf person and gamer. I already loved Fortnite
long ago but now this whole experience made me fall in
love with it even more.” Alessio: At the 12th
conference on implementation of the Convention on the
Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) at
United Nations headquarters on June 10th, Alexandre
Bloxs, human rights officer of the World Federation of
the Deaf and Frank Folino, president of Canadian
Association of the Deaf were part of the proceedings. CRPD is an international
United Nations human rights treaty protecting the rights
and dignity of people with disabilities. -Alexandre, of Liege,
Belgium spoke on better recognition and
consideration of sign language as the natural
language of deaf people, the importance of providing
inclusive education in this language to all deaf
children, and shared a WFD report on education for
the deaf children in Nepal. Folino of Toronto, Canada
led the opening session of Civil Society Forum (CSF)
which highlighted the importance of the inclusion
of organisations of persons with disabilities and
their advocacy work to implement the CRPD. After advocating for four
years, he was instrumental in the passage of a
federal law in Canada, the “Accessible Canada Act”
which among its provisions recognizes American Sign
Language and Quebec Sign Language (LSQ). Dawn: American Airlines,
the world’s largest carrier announced Wed they plan
to purchase 50 of Airbus’ newest long-range planes,
the new A321XLR plane. Airbus, the second largest
aerospace and defence company in the world based
in Europe, announced this new plane on Monday. -This comes at a time when
Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace company and
leading manufacturer of commercial jetliners and
defense, space and missiles worldwide, is under extreme
pressure since its entire 737 Max was grounded
worldwide for now over three months due to problems with
its flight software which caused two deadly
plane crashes. Repairs are taking longer
than expected as Boeing engineers and test pilots
work with the Federal Aviation Administration
in the United States and international regulatory
authorities to resolve deficiencies with
its 737 MAX fleet. Alessio: Millions of people
in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu are relying
on water tank trucks after water supply ran dry due
to an acute water shortage caused by drying lakes
and depleted groundwater. The State Rural Development
Minister reports a 62% shortfall in monsoon
rains compared to the previous year. -People are lining up for
water cans in the state capital of Chennai, India’s
sixth largest city of 10 million people. Companies are asking
employees to work at home and restaurants either
stopped serving lunch or are shutting down. Meteorologists said
monsoon rains usually cover two-thirds of the
country by mid-June. But to date rains have
reached less than half of the usual volume. Dawn: US President Donald
Trump formally launched his US presidential election
campaign in the USA state of Florida on Tuesday night. In his presentation, Trump
complained he was “under assault from the very first
day” of his presidency by a “fake news media” and an
“illegal witch hunt” that had tried to keep him and
his supporters down.” His campaign staff announced
that they raised $24.8 million USD in less than 24
hours after kicking off his re-election campaign. -Trump tried to make the
case that he had made good on his 2016 promises,
including cracking down on illegal immigration
and boosting jobs. He also gave a list of
new promises if reelected President for a second term,
pledging a new immigration system, new trade deals,
a health care overhaul and a cure for cancer and “many
diseases,” including eradicating AIDS in America. Trump already had $48.7
million USD cash on hand at the end of March. His political party,
the Republican National Committee also had $34.7
million USD during the same period. These dwarfs what
the top contenders of the Democratic party raised
during the first three months of this year. -Thank you for watching
WorldSign Week, visit H3WORLD.TV for more shows,
all in International Sign. For story submissions,
you can email them to [email protected] See you next week.


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