Scottish parliament welcomes gaelic language developments

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Wed Oct 18 12:43:55 UTC 2006


Scottish Parliament welcomes gaelic language developments

London, 17 October /PRNewswire-GNN/ --

News Release (GAELIC) issued by The Scottish Parliament on 17 October 2006

The Presiding Officer George Reid MSP today welcomed the announcement by
Bord na Gaidhlig that the Scottish Parliament is one of the six public
bodies required to develop a formal Gaelic language plan, under the Gaelic
Language (Scotland) Act 2005. Mr Reid, currently visiting Ireland with a
delegation of MSPs, said: "The announcement today is a significant
milestone for Gaelic development in Scotland. Our current commitment to
the language acknowledges the strong historical and cultural reasons for
carrying out work in Gaelic. The services we offer are extensive and we
have much to be proud of. "However, we must always strive to improve on
our accessibility, including visitor and outreach services. Developing a
Gaelic language plan alongside Bord na Gaidhlig will ensure we continue to
engage with the Gaelic community."

The Scottish Parliament has dedicated Gaelic language resources. Two full
time equivalent posts responsible for communications and for outreach work
help the Parliament meet the needs of the Gaelic community, including: *
More than 50,000 hits a month on average to the Gaelic section of the
Parliament's website. The Gaelic pages of the site are comprehensive and
mirror the English language pages as far as possible, including news
releases issued by the Parliament. * All printed education publications
for schools are available in Gaelic, along with the majority of all public
information leaflets and the Scottish Parliament Annual Report.

* Attending a range of bilingual community outreach events in 2005/6
(including major events in Inverness, Skye, Benbecula, Fort William), the
Royal National Mod, Gaelic careers seminar and Gaelic teachers' conference
(A' Chuisle).

* Involving Gaelic medium units in 'MSPs in Schools' project and further
education work through participation in Comann na Gaidhlig Gaelic schools
week in April 05 and April 06 where pupils visited the Parliament.
Sessions were provided for hundreds of Gaelic medium pupils.

Mr Reid continued:

"Amongst other things, the Parliament's current language policy commits to
translation services where people chose to address the Parliament in
Gaelic. The draft guidelines published by Bord na Gaidhlig will enable us
to explore other ideas for work we could undertake in the language."

The Parliament is now working on its Gaelic Language Plan ahead of its
submission to Bord na Gaidhlig for their consideration.


The Parliament's existing language policy can be viewed at: The Gaelic
section of the Parliament's website can be viewed at: News
Release available in Gaelic on request and on the Parliament's website.
Interviews are available in Gaelic on request. Please contact the
Parliament's Gaelic Communications Officer to request an interview.

Together with MSPs Shiona Baird, Dennis Canavan, Maureen MacMillan, Jim
Mather, Dave Petrie and Iain Smith, the Presiding Officer is undertaking a
six-day visit to Ireland to examine ways in which Scotland and Ireland can
cooperate in areas of common interest and strengthen the relationship
between the Irish and Scottish Parliaments. The delegation will meet with
fellow politicians in the Irish Parliament, the Oireachtas, to discuss how
the two countries can benefit from closer workings between the two

As part of the visit, the Presiding Officer will today give a keynote
address on Scottish-Irish links and 21st century democracy at the Royal
Irish Academy, co-hosted by the Centre for Irish-Scottish Studies, Trinity
College, Dublin and the Royal Irish Academy. For more about the visit see
the Parliament website at:

The contact for members of the media is:
Sally Coyne: 0131 348 6265
RNID Typetalk calls welcome
Email: sally.coyne at

Gaelic Communications Officer:
Alasdair MacCaluim: 0131 348 5395
Email: gaidhlig at

For public information enquiries, contact: 0131 348 5000 or 0845 278 1999
(local call rate) Text phone: 0131 348 3415 RNID Typetalk calls welcome
email: at

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