New Sign Languages Ethics Statement

The Sign Language Linguistics Society has released their ethics statement. As noted in the introduction to the statement, the SLLS Ethics Statement particularly addresses ethical concerns for researchers working on Sign Languages and supplements more general ethics statements, such as the LSA’s.

There are several important points in the statement. One is the emphasis on ethical behavior in context; this is timely given Crippen and Robinson’s (2013) complaint that many ethical frameworks don’t allow for individual community needs. Another is the stress on the ethical problems that stem from differential power relationships. Though these inequalities stem from historical situations, they may continue to have effects on contemporary working relationships and research protocols.

The SLLS statement has been ratified and is now active. The Society intends to set up an Ethics committee to follow up on issues arising from the statement, such as research concerns specific to a particular region or group.

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