As a Welsh local authority you’d expect us to be using the Welsh language. But did you know that we are required by law to provide a fully bilingual service to you – our customers?
That’s because we now have the Welsh Language Standards in place following The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011 which made Welsh an official language in Wales.
This means it must be treated no less favourably than English. The Standards are a set of legally binding requirements which have been in place since 30 March 2016.
We also have to report annually to report on our progress in complying with the standards and our Executive Board recently approved the Welsh Language Annual Monitoring Report in the areas of service delivery, operational and policy making.
“Need to improve in some areas”
Over the last 12 months we have made good progress and we are successfully recruiting into Welsh essential posts and delivering a comprehensive programme of Welsh language events throughout the year.
We still need to improve in some areas, however, and complaints from members of the public have highlighted where we’ve got it wrong. All complaints are investigated and where we’ve got it wrong we put our hands up and put it right.
We will continue to make all staff aware of the importance of the Standards and of offering a truly bilingual service.
The Standards also support one of the goals of the Well-Being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 – “A Wales of vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language”. This also supports our aim to continue to improve how we deliver a bilingual service.
We’ve been asked why don’t we use google translate? Whilst google translate has improved over the last few years it’s still not good enough to ensure it’s to an acceptable standard and we will continue to use our Welsh language translators based in Conwy who are providing a first class service to us.
Cllr Hugh Jones, Lead Member for Communities, Partnerships, Public Protection and Community Safety, said: “Whilst we have made good progress in the last 12 months there are still challenges and instances of non-compliance which we will continue to thoroughly investigate and take action where necessary.”
You can take a look at our Welsh Language Annual Monitoring Report here.
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