OF WALES & THE WELSH
Greg Lance – Watkins
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minded of the catastrophic failures of the Regional Assembly in Wales with it’s parochial and incestuous plans, which even with the subsidies it can not survive without it seems happy to squander other peoples’ money on crack pot schemes to buy minority support.
It is not just education that is in trouble in Wales but due to the compulsion regarding the minority Welsh language but there are now 1 in 4 families living in poverty.
The fantasy that the Regional assembly can force 1,000,000 people in Wales to speak and use the Welsh minority language and re-establish it as a language of consequence is risible. #NHS in Wales, Education in Wales, Jobs in Wales, Inward investment to Wales, Broadcasting in Wales, Press in Wales, Teacher training in Wales, Poverty in Wales and so much more are being seriously damaged by the imposition of the Welsh minority language.
The Welsh Labour Government’s ambition of having a 1,000,000 Welsh speakers in Wales by the year 2050 now appears to be partially responsible for the severe shortage of GPs and senior consultants across the country.
The vexed issue has been debated in an obscure National Assembly committee in which the British Medical Association’s Dr Phil White – a Welsh speaking GP from North Wales – has delivered some uncomfortable messages to the politically-correct politicians .
One of the problem areas is North Wales, where the NHS hospitals are run by the notorious, Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board . This is so badly managed it has been in “special measures” for over 3 years.
Penarth’s Conservative AM David Melding (South Wales Central) has been told by the BMA’s Dr Phil White that “with consultant staff there is a perception in North West Wales and in other Welsh speaking areas of Wales that Welsh language is essential – or they are having to learn it.”
The BMA’s Dr White went on to say that some consultants – considering whether to apply for vacancies in Wales – were concerned that their children would be have to be taught in local schools through the medium of Welsh. Dr White said “This is fine if that’s what you want – but there’s a lot of people put-off because of this perception” .
Hammering home the point, Welsh-speaking Dr White told Melding that Welsh-speakers should NOT expect to be dealt with in the Welsh language everywhere they went in Wales. He said “There are areas of Wales where it is very difficult to find Welsh speakers – and to raise expectations, amongst the population, that they have a right to speak Welsh everywhere is the danger here.”
Veteran AM David Melding – who lives in Penarth and is best known in the town for having supported the Welsh Government’s decision to permit 300,000 tonnes of mud from the Hinkley Point nuclear power complex to be dumped a mile from the Penarth foreshore – clearly disapproved of the BMA’s challenging response to Labour’s Welsh Language policy.
Melding told Dr White “You’ve repeatedly made that challenging and, may I say, grim observation“ . He reminded the doctor that Wales is a “bilingual nation” and “since the 1960s” has had a law in force which “recognises the equal validity of the languages “.
Melding wanted to know if the BMA had objections to any of the “Six Duties” (see below) which are now to be imposed on public bodies in Wales. He pointed out that some members of the Welsh Language Society [Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg] wanted the proposed Six Duties further strengthened and extended.
Dr White said the Welsh Language Society’s demands would not be a problem in “the Welsh heartland” – but in the Gwent Valleys “could be a little bit more difficult”.
He said “In an ideal world, yes, we could all be bi-lingual , we could all learn Welsh and several of my English consultant-colleagues have done so – and that’s to be encouraged – but compulsion would be very difficult and you’d end up with no GPs – rather than Welsh-speaking GPs “
BMA colleague Dr Ian Harris said as far as the Welsh Language was concerned, the medical profession was “on a journey” but it did not want to “eradicate General Practice along that journey”.
He said there was a perception in the medical profession that there was a “creep” towards making the Welsh Language “compulsory” and to provide all services in Welsh.
This -he said – is “quite a scary thing for a lot of people. We don’t need any barriers to encouraging people into General Practice. – because we have a shrinking workforce and a worsening provision for our patients.”
Penarth AM David Melding – who had translation facilities on his desk – said the Welsh Language Society was “pushing” the Welsh Labour Government to make the “Six Duties” to be forced on the medical profession even more rigorous and extensive.
PDN BACKGROUND NOTE: “THE SIX DUTIES” :-
The so-called “Six Duties” impose the following obligations on Public Bodies in Wales. They must:-
- Notify the Local Health Board that they are willing to provide services through the medium of Welsh;
- Make a Welsh language version of any document or form provided by the Local Health Board available to patients and/or members of the public;
- Display text on any new sign or notice relating to the service provided, in English and Welsh;
- Encourage the wearing of a badge, provided by the Local Health Board, by Welsh speakers, to convey that they are able to speak Welsh;
- Encourage those delivering services to utilise information and/or attend training courses and events provided by the Local Health Board, so that they can develop an awareness of the Welsh language (including awareness of its history and its role in Welsh culture) and an understanding of how the Welsh language can be used when delivering services; and
- Encourage those delivering services to establish and record the Welsh or English language preference expressed by or on behalf of a patient.
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in the interest of accuracy material in the main text in blue was written by someone other than myself.
When in black text the wording ‘Welsh Language’ means the ‘Language of the peoples of Wales’ and is therefore the majority language ie ‘English’
The ancient language of parts of Wales, varied as it is, as spoken by a tiny minority in Wales is called ‘Welsh’ or ‘the ancient Welsh language’
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