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Oireachtas Report recognises role of voluntary sector in Strategy

August 12, 2010

An Oireachtas committee, which today published a report on the Draft 20 Year Strategy for the Irish language, has highlighted the importance of Irish language organisations in the in future implementation of the Strategy.

One of the recommendations made in the report states that the success of the strategy will depend on harnessing and co-coordinating the support given to the sector and it stresses that it is essential that “effective support structures are in place for this sector that will allow the government to assist them and monitor their achievements during the lifetime of the Strategy”.

The report, which was compiled by the Joint Committee on Tourism, Culture, Sport, Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs, also recommends that that Údarás na Gaeltachta or any new body established under the strategy should retain the primary responsibility to develop the economy and infrastructure of the Gaeltacht.

The Chairman of the committee, Tom Kitt, TD presented the report to Minister Pat Carey, TD, earlier today, 28 July 2010 at a press conference held in Leinster House.

The report contains 39 proposals to be included in the Strategy which covers aspects of Irish language education, Gaeltacht education as well as the normalization of Irish in society.

The report also makes recommendations on the role played by state agencies and the public in the implementation of the Strategy.

The Minister welcomed the publication of the report  and  said  that he was hopeful that there would be cross-party support for the strategy when the Taoiseach chairs a debate in the Houses of the Oireachtas in the autumn.

If the Government accepts the recommendations made by the report, the Office of An Coimisinéir Teanga, the Irish language Ombudsman would be responsible monitoring the strategy’s implementation.

The report also recommends that the Strategy should contain a clear outline of the separate responsibilities of Údarás na Gaeltachta and Foras na Gaeilge in the strategy.

Minister Carey stated that it was unlikely that any merger between the two organizations due to the time constraints.
Pádraig Mac Criostail, Director of Comhdháil Náisiúnta na Gaeilge welcomed the publication of the report. “ I wish to congratulate the Joint Committee for the comprehensive report which contains strong recommendations which have been agreed ona cross-party basis, recoomendations which will no doubt benefit the Irish language in the coming twenty years.”

“ The proposals followed a consultation process which was established by the committee to examine opinions, the wishes and the needs of the Irish speaking community.  An Chomhdháil hopes that the Government will accept the recommendations of the report in it’s entirety and that the final 20 Year Strategy for the Irish language be published soon.

Julian de Spáinn, Secretary General of Conradh na Gaeilge also welcomed the publication of the report and thanked the committee for seeking the opinions of the public on aspects of the draft Strategy. “It is imperative that the Government approves all the recommendations in the Joint Oireachtas Committee’s report in their entirety, that they are included in the final draft of the 20 Year Strategy for the Irish Language, and that cross-party agreement is fostered for the Strategy to ensure its value is appreciated and supported across the board in coming years.”

The Report has been published online on the website of the Houses of the Oireachtas here. What do you think of the proposals made by the Committee? Contact us on our facebook page or send a message to @gaelport on Twitter.
©Foilsithe ar Gaelport.com 28 Iúil 2010