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Publication - Publication

Gaelic Language Plan

Published: 6 Jul 2010
Part of:
Arts, culture and sport
ISBN:
978 0 7559 9398 7

Scottish Government's plan to support the promotion of Gaelic throughout Scotland.

92 page PDF

972.7kB

92 page PDF

972.7kB

Contents
Gaelic Language Plan
CHAPTER II - CORE COMMITMENTS

92 page PDF

972.7kB

CHAPTER II - CORE COMMITMENTS

In its statutory Guidance on the Development of Gaelic Language Plans, Bòrd na Gàidhlig identifies one of the key aspects to normalising the use of Gaelic to be in creating the conditions for its use in public life. The Bòrd has identified four core areas of service delivery that it wishes public bodies to address when preparing their Gaelic Language Plans. These are:

Identity:

corporate identity
signs

Communications:

reception
telephone
mail and e-mail
forms
public meetings
complaints procedures

Publications:

public relations and media
printed material
websites
exhibitions

Staffing:

training
language learning
recruitment
advertising

The Scottish Government recognises that each of these four corporate functions can play an important role in raising the profile and visibility of Gaelic, and of creating practical opportunities for Gaelic speakers and learners. This section of our Gaelic Language Plan sets out in turn what Gaelic provision will be made in relation to each of the functions.

In considering how it can develop its Gaelic provision in these areas, the Scottish Government has had regard to the statutory requirements laid out in the Gaelic Language (Scotland) Act 2005, and to the Bòrd's Guidance on the development of Gaelic Language Plans. The Guidance states that, in general terms, the expectation is that in those geographical locations, in which the percentages or numbers of Gaelic speakers is greater, the scope of the Gaelic Language Plan will be wider and the level of commitments in it will be stronger.

The Scottish Government operates across all areas of Scotland - in developing its Gaelic language provision, we will therefore adopt a minimum level of provision which will apply to all of our areas of operation, and will provide an enhanced level of provision in areas where the number of Gaelic speakers is greater. The Scottish Government intends to conduct a language audit within the first year of implementation of our Gaelic Language Plan to help identify aspects of services and geographical areas where more detailed Gaelic provision may be feasible and desirable.

This section sets out the minimum level of Gaelic language provision which we commit to providing in the 5-year lifetime of the Plan. All areas of the Scottish Government will be encouraged to exceed this basic level of provision and to gradually increase over the lifetime of the Plan the Gaelic provision which they offer. We also recognise that this Gaelic Language Plan represents a starting point, and expect our future Plans to represent step changes in the basic minimum level of Gaelic language provision which will be offered.

Section 1 - Identity

The presence of Gaelic in the corporate identity and signs of a public authority can greatly enhance the visibility of the language, and makes an important statement by a public authority about how Gaelic is valued and how it will be given recognition. Developing the use of Gaelic through signs can also enrich the vocabulary of Gaelic users and contribute to the development of the language.

The Scottish Government recognises the importance of creating widespread awareness of the use of Gaelic and of promoting a positive image of it.

Corporate Identity

Current Practice

The Scottish Government currently does not have an agreed policy for the use of Gaelic in its corporate identity.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will make use of the bilingual version of the Scottish Government logo as the norm across all areas of our operations.

December 2010

All business areas

Our bilingual logo has recently been developed however we will look to include Gaelic under the terms of 'equal respect' when any rebranding exercise is undertaken.

At the earliest opportunity

Communications

We will audit all electronic letter templates used by the Scottish Government and revise to include the bilingual translations of Directorates and Divisions.

December 2010

ISIS - Corporate Systems

We will ensure that there are appropriate translations of Directorates and Division names.

As necessary

Gaelic Unit

We will use the Scottish Government bilingual corporate logo in:

Letterheads
Envelopes
Compliment slips
Business cards
Acknowledgement cards.

June 2011

All business areas

We are investigating how the status of Gaelic can be enhanced and utilised appropriately in the context of our international marketing activity.

Ongoing

Promotion of Scotland and Tourism

Signs (internal and external)

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not have an agreed policy for the use of Gaelic on signage.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We are introducing bilingual signs across the Scottish Government estate.

August 2010

Facilities and Estates Services

We have audited all Scottish Government external and entrance signs for the use of Gaelic.

Additional audit work instructed for Marine Scotland buildings that became part of the Scottish Government estate from 1 October 2009.

September 2008

Facilities and Estates Services

We have increased the use of Gaelic in external and entrance signage in all of our buildings.

August 2010

Facilities and Estates Services

'Welcome/Failte' signs are introducing into our public foyers.

August 2010

Facilities and Estates Services

Section 2 - Communications

The use of Gaelic at the initial point of contact that members of the public have with a public authority increases the visible and audible presence of the language and contributes to the sense that the use of Gaelic is possible and welcome. In addition to raising the profile of the language, it also creates opportunities for its practical use and encourages members of the public to use Gaelic in subsequent dealings with the public authority.

The use of Gaelic in interactions with the authority by mail, e-mail and by telephone is important in creating practical opportunities for the use of the language, and in contributing to the sense that its use is possible and welcome. The presence of Gaelic in a wide range of Gaelic forms, or in bilingual forms, can also greatly enhance the visibility and prestige of the language. The preparation of Gaelic versions of forms, applications and similar documents, can also assist in expanding the range of Gaelic terminology and the awareness of the Gaelic-speaking public of such terminology, helping the development of the language itself.

The Scottish Government recognises the importance of creating opportunities for the practical use of Gaelic in a wide range of everyday situations and is committed to increasing its level of provision in this area.

Reception

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any Gaelic provision in reception areas at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will introduce Gaelic awareness training for front of house staff including key phrases and appropriate use.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Facilities and Estates Services

Reception staff will have access to a Gaelic-speaking member of staff to assist with Gaelic enquiries.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Facilities and Estates Services

Bilingual signs will be introduced into all of our public foyers.

August 2010

Facilities and Estates Services

Telephone

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not, at present, make any provision for handling telephone calls in Gaelic.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will make Gaelic language a desirable job skill for new staff joining the Central Enquiry Unit at Kinlochleven to enable initial calls to be dealt with in Gaelic.

Attempts are ongoing

Telecommunications

We will ensure that there is a Gaelic option on our automated switchboard.

December 2010

Telecommunications

We aim to promote 'positive choice' and CEU staff will be able to transfer calls to a Gaelic officer when this is required.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Telecommunications

Mail and e-mail:

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not currently have an agreed policy on how to respond to Gaelic mail and e-mail.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We have advertised on our website that the Scottish Government is happy to receive correspondence in Gaelic and other languages.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/About/Contacts

Immediate

Correspondence Unit

When a member of the public writes to the Scottish Government in Gaelic they will receive a reply in Gaelic.

Immediate

Correspondence Unit

The Scottish Government will establish a database of those individuals or organisations who prefer to receive communications in Gaelic, and we will endeavour to initiate appropriate correspondence to them in Gaelic.

December 2011

Correspondence Unit with the Gaelic Unit

We will make automatically generated electronic content (such as e-mail disclaimers) bilingual.

December 2010

ISIS - Corporate Systems Support

We will create Directorate level strap-lines for use in outgoing e-mails to publicise Gaelic services in Gaelic and English.

As necessary

All business areas with support from Gaelic Unit

Forms:

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not currently make explicit provision for the use of Gaelic in forms but has accepted Gaelic submissions on an individual basis.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

The Scottish Government will increase the use and visibility of Gaelic in its most commonly used forms:

  • we will make more Gaelic visible on forms
  • we will identify situations in which completion of forms in Gaelic will be encouraged.

December 2011

All Business Areas

The Scottish Government will accept, and welcome, the completion of forms in Gaelic.

Immediate

All Business Areas

Public Meetings:

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any provision for holding public meetings in Gaelic or making Gaelic provision at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will formalise procedures where provision will be made for the use of Gaelic in public meetings where there is significant usage of the language evident or where the subject matter is of particular interest to Gaelic speakers.

December 2011

All Business Areas

The Scottish Government will establish a contract for Gaelic interpretation in any public meetings where this would be preferred. Especially in areas where there is a high concentration of users of the language.

June 2012

Scottish Procurement Directorate

Complaints Procedure:

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any provision for including Gaelic in its complaints procedures at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

A Gaelic translation of our complaints leaflet will be made available online and in print.

December 2011

Correspondence Unit

Section 3 - Publications

The use of Gaelic in a range of printed material can assist Gaelic development in a variety of ways. It helps increase the visibility of the language, it enhances Gaelic's status by being used in high-profile publications, and it can help develop new, and enhance existing, terminology. The use of Gaelic in the media helps demonstrate a public authority's commitment to making important information available through the medium of Gaelic, as well as enhancing the visibility and status of the language. As more people access information about public authorities through their websites, making provision for the use of Gaelic can significantly enhance the status and visibility of the language.

The Scottish Government is committed to increasing the use of Gaelic in these areas where the subject matter is of most interest to the general public or relates specifically to Gaelic issues.

Public Relations and Media:

Current practice

The Scottish Government produces around 3000 press releases each year. Some of these are already produced in Gaelic but at present there is no agreed policy for this.

We will develop guidance for staff on the circumstances in which it is appropriate to produce a Gaelic or bilingual press release.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

Marketing Unit will advise Directorates on the use of Gaelic whilst developing Scottish Government advertising and marketing campaigns.

December 2011

Marketing and New Media

We will develop guidelines for the issuing of bilingual news releases, where it is expected that the criteria will include; when a topic is of particular interest to those living with the geographical areas where Gaelic is more prevalent, or deals with matter relating to the Gaelic language, culture or education.

December 2010

Communications Directorate

We will establish an area in the Scottish Government's website where Gaelic news releases will be held together.

December 2010

Communications Directorate

Ministerial quotes can be provided in Gaelic if requested.

Current practice

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

Printed Material:

Current practice

The Scottish Government already publishes a variety of materials in Gaelic, such as the 'Consultation on the Culture (Scotland) Bill'. The Scottish Government will increase the number of documents it produces in Gaelic or bilingually or with a Gaelic summary.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will increase the number of summary documents which are produced in Gaelic.

June 2011

All Business Areas

The Scottish Government 'Consultation Good Practice Guidance' will be amended to encourage bilingually or separate English and Gaelic versions of consultation documents.

December 2010

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

Where Gaelic is to be issued in publications, we will adopt a bilingual approach. However, there may be circumstances, such as time constraints, where it will be necessary, or desirable, to produce a Gaelic language version separately.

June 2011

All Business Areas

We will develop guidelines for Gaelic publications, where it is expected that the criteria will include; when a topic is of particular interest to those living with the geographical areas where Gaelic is more prevalent; deals with matter relating to the Gaelic language, culture or education; relates to a matter of national importance being distributed to all households via pamphlets or leaflets; is being translated into other community languages.

December 2010

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

Current practice

The Scottish Government already publishes a variety of materials in Gaelic, such as the 'Consultation on the Culture (Scotland) Bill'. The Scottish Government will increase the number of documents it produces in Gaelic or bilingually or with a Gaelic summary.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

Ministerial quotes can be provided in Gaelic if requested.

Current practice

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

We will make clear on the Scottish Government website, which publications are available in Gaelic.

September 2011

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

Websites:

Current practice

The Scottish Government's website www.scotland.gov.uk already has selected pages provided in Gaelic. These pages are also accessible from www.alba.gov.uk .

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will add content to the Scottish Government website regarding our Gaelic Language Plan and increase the Gaelic content on the Scottish Government website.

September 2010

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

The Gaelic section in the Scottish Government website will be expanded and will contain access to sections where Gaelic news releases and publications will be held.

September 2010

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

We will make clear on the Scottish Government website, which publications are available in Gaelic.

September 2011

Communications Directorate/Gaelic Unit

We will increase the number of Gaelic translations of documents available on-line.

June 2011

All Business Areas

All publications relating to the Scottish Government Gaelic Language Plan will be bilingual.

Immediate upon consultation

Gaelic Unit

Exhibitions:

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any provision for including Gaelic in exhibitions at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

For exhibitions, officials will consider whether the content and/or target audience indicate that it should contain any information in Gaelic in addition to English. In particular, whether a bilingual, or Gaelic, exhibition would be appropriate where the exhibition:

  • refers to the publication of a report or other documentation which is being published bilingually or with a separate Gaelic version
  • deals with a topic which is of particular interest to those living within an area or areas where Gaelic is more prevalent
  • relates specifically to Gaelic language, culture or education
  • refers to a matter of national importance by the Scottish Government otherwise merit a bilingual press release
  • is making available information in other community languages.

June 2011

All Business Areas

Scottish Government staff preparing exhibitions will have access to Gaelic translation services for bi-lingual captions required.

Immediate

All Business Areas through Gaelic Unit

Section 4 - Staffing

In order to deliver services through the medium of Gaelic, it is necessary to develop the requisite job skills and language skills of their staff. The provision of language learning for staff helps promote adult Gaelic learning, and in promoting Gaelic as a useful skill in the workplace. The identification of jobs in which Gaelic is an identified skill will contribute greatly to the status of the language, and in identifying it as a positive skill to acquire.

The use of Gaelic in advertising also helps recognise that Gaelic should be used in public life and that Gaelic speakers have an important role to play within a public authority. Whatever the level of Gaelic skills required, it is important that authorities ensure that Gaelic is a genuine occupational requirement and adopt and apply objective criteria to ensure appointments are made in each case on a fair and consistent basis, and reflect the identified skills needs of the post.

The Scottish Government recognises the importance of recognising Gaelic as an important job skill and of identifying situations in which its use is essential or desirable. The Scottish Government also recognises the importance of enabling staff to develop their Gaelic skills where they wish to do so.

Training

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any provision for offering training on Gaelic issues for staff at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

We will provide a programme of Gaelic awareness training for front of house staff.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Facilities and Estates Services

We will roll out Gaelic awareness-raising sessions across the Scottish Government, and make the material available on-line.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Corporate Learning Services with Gaelic Unit

We will develop guidance notes for all staff on our Gaelic Language Plan and new policies/procedures as they are developed, which will be, published on a Gaelic section of the Scottish Government intranet.

Upon completion of the GLP process

Gaelic Unit

Language Learning

Current practice

There has been some Gaelic learning in the Scottish Government. This has largely consisted of supporting personal study, the inclusion of Gaelic in learning at work days and some provision for learners.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

Gaelic classes will be offered to staff in the Scottish Government through our lifelong learning arrangements.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

Corporate Learning Services

The Scottish Government will undertake a Gaelic linguistic skills audit to find out how many of our staff have Gaelic language ability and to what standard and will circulate relevant material to those NDPBs who are interested in the work. We intend this data to be maintained.

Upon completion of the GLP process

Gaelic Unit/Corporate Learning Services/Central Research Unit

We will raise the profile of Gaelic as part of our Learning at Work days.

Immediate

Corporate Learning Services

We will promote opportunities for staff to use Gaelic in internal matters.

Upon completion of audit of skills survey

All Directorates

We will provide opportunities for staff who already speak Gaelic to develop their competencies, including literacy.

June 2011

Corporate Learning Services

We will publicise the availability of Gaelic resources in our Learning Resource centre.

Immediate

Corporate Learning Services

Recruitment

Current practice

All recruitment to the Scottish Government is carried out in accordance with the Civil Service rules on fair and open competition. This means that the best person is chosen for the vacancy. If the ability to speak or write Gaelic is a genuine occupational requirement then the candidate's linguistic ability will be properly taken into account.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

The Scottish Government will recruit a Gaelic officer, or officers, who will join the Gaelic Unit and have responsibility for promoting, monitoring and implementation of the Gaelic Language Plan.

Upon completion of the GLP process

Gaelic Unit

Language training and support will be available to the Gaelic Unit to enable them to carry out their duties effectively.

With immediate effect

Corporate Learning Services

We will prepare guidelines on the designation of Gaelic posts.

December 2011

Gaelic Unit with Resourcing

Where a certain level of Gaelic skills is necessary for any post, this will be specified when recruiting to it.

December 2011

Resourcing

Advertising

Current practice

The Scottish Government does not make any provision for Gaelic or bilingual advertising for staff at present.

Target date

Lead Business Area

Key areas of development

Where a certain level of Gaelic skills is part of the job description, we will advertise such posts bilingually.

December 2011

Resourcing


Contact

Email: ceu@gov.scot – Central Enquiry Unit

Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG