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Publication - Guidance

Scottish Government Gaelic Language Plan 2016-2021

Published: 5 May 2017
Part of:
Arts, culture and sport, Education
ISBN:
9781786529398

How the Scottish Government supports Gaelic in its operations, to ensure the language has a sustainable future in Scotland.

44 page PDF

1.1MB

44 page PDF

1.1MB

Contents
Scottish Government Gaelic Language Plan 2016-2021
Chapter II: Core Commitments

44 page PDF

1.1MB

Chapter II: Core Commitments

The commitments in this section relate to how the Scottish Government, in addition to its funding of Bòrd na Gàidhlig and other projects related to fulfilling the National Plan for Gaelic, will use and enable the use of Gaelic in relation to its main business functions. All Gaelic services and resources will demonstrate equal respect for Gaelic and English. While these commitments primarily apply to the Core Scottish Government, executive agencies, NDPBs and any other authorities which carry out functions on behalf of the Scottish Government may wish to apply them to their own operations where relevant, in anticipation of their own Gaelic Language Plan.

Our core commitments are divided into the following areas:

Section 1 - Identity and Visibility

Section 2 - Communications and Publications

Section 3 - Staffing and Training

The Scottish Government recognises that each of these three areas play an important role in raising the profile and visibility of Gaelic, and of creating practical opportunities for Gaelic speakers and learners.

For each area, this Plan will highlight the Scottish Government's current practice (including many initiatives successfully implemented), and areas for development, with reference to the High Level Aims discussed by Bòrd na Gàidhlig and the Scottish Government during the Plan review process. In addition, we remain supportive of previous commitments where relevant according to operational changes.

The Scottish Government operates across all areas of Scotland. Therefore, in developing our Gaelic language provision, we will 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 there is growth in the number of Gaelic speakers and demand for service. A continuous active offer will be made for Gaelic services and facilities.

Current Scottish Government support for Gaelic

The current level of Gaelic support within the Scottish Government is summarised in the table below, with further details and areas for development in the following sections.

Identity and Visibility

Communications and Publications

Staffing and Training

Bilingual logo and branding

Bilingual signage

Gaelic versions of Directorate and Division names

Gaelic correspondence encouraged and responded to in Gaelic

A number of press releases, consultations and online material are produced bilingually where appropriate

Gaelic translations of printed material available on request

A Gaelic Plan Officer is employed to produce translations and monitor implementation of the Plan

Advice is available to Scottish Government staff regarding Gaelic awareness and language learning

Level of Gaelic skills considered when recruiting to certain posts as necessary

Section 1 - Identity and Visibility

The presence of Gaelic in the corporate identity 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.

Maintaining the quality, consistency and richness of the language used publicly ensures the status of the language is maintained.

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

Current Practice The Scottish Government has a bilingual logo, which is now used as standard across all our operations.
Bilingual versions are available of all letter templates, and teams are being made aware of their existence and encouraged to use them at all times.
Gaelic versions of all Directorate and Division names are available. These are updated as needed by the Gaelic and Scots Team as names change internally.
All Ministers now have bilingual letterheads available.
Bilingual signage is used throughout the Scottish Government estate, in external and entrance signs to most buildings, and signage in public reception areas.
External signs to Scottish Government buildings are bilingual, with buildings to the north and west of the Caledonian Canal showing the Gaelic first followed by the English, and elsewhere English followed by the Gaelic.
The bilingual logo is now used for all new corporate clothing worn by house staff at Scottish Government buildings, having been phased in from May 2014.

 

Areas for Development

Target date

Lead Business Area

High Level
Aim

The Scottish Government logo will be refreshed, giving equal respect to Gaelic.

2016

Marketing

A database will be maintained of Gaelic versions of internal division and agency names to ensure consistency within the organisation.

Immediately

Gaelic and Scots Team/Facilities/Digital

Use of bilingual letter templates for Ministers, Directorates and Divisions will be encouraged as the default.

Ongoing

Gaelic and Scots Team

Section 2 - Communications & Publications

The use and visibility of Gaelic in communications between members of the public and a public authority 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 a range of printed material, in the media and online increases the visibility of the language, and enhances Gaelic's status when used in high-profile publications, and it can help develop new, and enhance existing, terminology. This helps demonstrate a public authority's commitment to making important information available through the medium of Gaelic. 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 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.

Current Practice Bilingual signs are in place in reception areas across all core Scottish Government buildings.
Front of house and Central Enquiries Unit staff receiving enquiries (telephone, mail or email) in Gaelic can pass these on to the Gaelic team where a fluent Gaelic speaker can respond to their query.
All correspondence received in Gaelic is responded to in Gaelic. This is passed to the Gaelic team for translation as needed.
Automatically generated text such as email disclaimers is bilingual, and will be produced bilingually in future.
Gaelic is considered for forms, and bilingual forms issued on request. Forms in Gaelic are welcomed and encouraged, and acknowledged in Gaelic.
Consultations will be issued bilingually where appropriate, and responses in Gaelic encouraged. Consultation responses received in Gaelic will be responded to in Gaelic.
We encourage the use of Gaelic in public meetings in areas where there is a large number of Gaelic speakers present. We are able to advise on procedures should a Gaelic interpreter be required.
A Gaelic version of our Complaints leaflet is available online.
Ministerial quotes and speeches can be provided bilingually on request from the Gaelic team.
A number of news releases and social media items are released bilingually, primarily when a topic relates particularly to the Gaelic language.
Gaelic translations of Scottish Government printed materials are available on request.
Gaelic is included in the branding of new communications projects, e.g. the website of the Office of the First Minister
We encourage the use of Gaelic in all relevant exhibitions. Organisers will consider whether the content and/or target audience indicate that it should contain any information in Gaelic in addition to English.
Guidelines have been produced by the Scottish Government Communications Office on the use of Gaelic in news releases.
Gaelic is available as an option on our automated switchboard.

 

Areas for Development

Target date

Lead Business Area

High Level
Aim

We will work with Directorates to include Gaelic in news and media activities, covering matters of national importance, as well as matters relevant to the Gaelic language in Scotland.

During the life of Plan

Communications/Gaelic and Scots Team

High Level
Aim

We will continue to increase Gaelic presence on all Scottish Government websites (including corporate website, internal staff intranet and new websites as they are developed), on the basis of the principle of equal respect, visibility and usability of Gaelic.

During the life of Plan

Digital/Gaelic and Scots Team

Further content which can be issued in Gaelic or bilingually will be identified, translated and published.

Ongoing

Gaelic and Scots Team

We will include Gaelic in further developments as we move to disseminate more information through social media.

During the life of Plan

Communications/Gaelic and Scots Team

The Scottish Government will have a representative available for interview or comment in Gaelic if requested by media outlets, and will publicise this availability.

Immediately

Communications/Ministerial/Gaelic and Scots Team

The Gaelic and Scots Team will offer advice on the use of Gaelic at public meetings and record any requests.

During the life of Plan

Gaelic and Scots Team

Section 3 - Staffing and Training

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 promote 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 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.

Current Practice We have held Gaelic Awareness sessions in the past and are able to advise Scottish Government staff with an interest in learning Gaelic of opportunities.
The Scottish Government employ a Gaelic Plan Officer, based within the Gaelic and Scots Team, with responsibility for internal translations and for monitoring the commitments in this Plan.
Level of Gaelic skills required for certain posts will be considered where necessary and specified when recruiting to these posts. This will include posts for which Gaelic skills are essential.
Gaelic has been listed as a desirable skill when recruiting staff for our Central Enquiry Unit.
Gaelic language training and support is available to the Gaelic and Scots Team to enable them to carry out their duties effectively.

 

Areas for Development

Target date

Lead Business Area

High Level
Aim

We will explore the needs of Gaelic language learning by including Gaelic in future staff engagement and promote availability to Scottish Government staff.

Ongoing

Gaelic and Scots Team/People Development

We will offer Gaelic awareness training for communications staff and senior officers.

By end 2016

Gaelic and Scots
Team/Communications

The Scottish Government's training network is the Learning Gateway. Using this we will support our Training Liaison Officers when promoting Gaelic language learning.

Ongoing

Gaelic and Scots Team/People Development


Contact

Email: Ruaraidh MacIntyre

Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit

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