Ireland pushes to increase indigenous Gaelic usage nation-wide

By Gail Conway

DUBLIN – A new report has found only 84 positions of the 20,000 people employed by Government departments are recognised as roles with an Irish language requirement. 
Ireland has been pushing to increasingly improve the standing of its native language, Gaelic, on the island.
The first monitoring report from the Office of An Coimisinéir Teanga gives an account of the various audits carried out in 2018.

The main areas identified, as being monitoring priorities, include staff numbers working in Government departments who are competent in Irish, local authority websites and use of the official languages on signage at heritage sites.

The report is based on information gathered since the new monitoring system was introduced in mid-2018.

The findings show that 67 positions recognised as roles with an Irish language requirement are in the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

Only two local authorities of the ten examined were in compliance, for the most part, with the statutory language commitments relating to their websites.

While almost 60% of signs examined at heritage sites under the auspices of the Office of Public Works were in compliance with the regulations.

Based on the results of the report, Coimisinéir Rónán Ó Domhnaill said shortcomings must be addressed by amending the Official Languages Act and the recruitment policies of the State.

These moves are considered important on the part of Irish lawmakers and the citizenry.

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