Sign Language Restaurant Not Just For Deaf

Signs Restaurant

A new restaurant in Toronto called Signs is the first project of it’s kind in Canada. The eatery hires servers who are deaf and gives customers the opportunity to order their meals through sign language. Now if you don’t know how to sign, no problem! The company wants to encourage signing among everyone and so incorporates graphics on the menu to help patrons learn.

Anjan Manikumar is the owner and he says he got the inspiration while working as a server and he had a deaf customer who had to point on the menu to order. He felt this customer wasn’t getting the service he deserved and so now both deaf customers and non-deaf can experience a different restaurant experience. In addition to the menu graphics teaching customers how to sign, there’s also cheat-sheets on the tables and illustrations on the wall to help customers learn how to communicate common words and phrases one would use in a restaurant.

Not only is this a great new place for the deaf community to dine but a new job opportunity as well. Restaurant Manager Rachel Shemuel says that it’s a great opportunity for the hearing community to see that the deaf community can do anything and everything, and, at the same time, get to experience what life is like for a deaf person from day to day.

I think this would be such a fun and inspiring dining experience: enjoying time with friends, learning something new and getting to appreciate something we might not have previously (not to mention eating of course!). Cheers to everyone at Signs and I look forward to dining there! Wishing everyone a Doog News Day!

Photo credit: Sima Sahar Zerehi/CBC

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