FSA launches Welsh Language Scheme
Wednesday 6 August 2008
The Food Standards Agency has launched its second Welsh Language scheme, for the period 2008–12.
‘This scheme is an exemplar for other regulatory bodies considering adopting a Welsh language scheme.’
The Agency, as a UK regulator and consumer protection body, recognises that a large number of consumers in the UK are Welsh speakers. The Welsh Language Scheme identifies the steps the Agency will take to conduct its business bilingually, and has been prepared in consultation with the Welsh Language Board.
As part of its commitment to the scheme, and to putting consumers first, the Agency established an in-house Welsh Language Unit last year. This provides a wide range of services to ensure the successful implementation of the scheme throughout the Agency. This has resulted already in improved consumer advice in the medium of Welsh through Agency websites and an extensive range of publications.
Launching the scheme at the Eisteddfod, Steve Wearne, Director of the FSA in Wales commented: 'The launch of this second scheme reinforces the Agency's commitment to the Welsh language and will allow us to build on our communications with Welsh speakers, not only through our day-to-day business, but also through the advice that is available to members of the public.'
Also speaking at the event, the newly appointed Minister for Heritage, Alun Ffred Jones, said: 'It's very encouraging to see the Agency reinforcing it's commitment to Welsh language provision, and by doing so, putting the consumer first. The fact that the Agency has established an internal Welsh Language Unit proves that this is not just a superficial gesture, but a permanent and definite commitment. It's also a pleasure to see the progress that has already been made, including bilingual websites, contact with the Welsh medium media and a wide variety of publications, and I very much look forward to seeing the Agency make further developments in this field.'
Meri Huws, Chair of the Welsh Language Board added: 'We have been pleased to work with the FSA on the development of this scheme. It is particularly rewarding to see a UK regulator developing a second scheme that has embraced the recommendations of the Board. This scheme is an exemplar for other regulatory bodies considering adopting a Welsh language scheme.'