Mr. Speaker, on Saturday I attended an event held by the Société culturelle québécoise des sourds, and I saw how important it is to understand the reality of the 310,000 deaf and 2.8 million hard-of-hearing Canadians. Barely 20% of deaf people work full-time. Nearly 42% are underemployed and more than 37% are unemployed.
The UN recognizes how significant this is, given that the deaf community has a prominent place in the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Although this convention was signed and ratified by Canada, the optional protocol that would enable persons with disabilities to complain has not been. The deaf must have ways to speak out against the government when it does not fulfill its commitments.
It is time to make an effort to support these people, many of whom may be confronted with challenges every day. Education is needed here.