Changes to Languages Bill to require 20% of public service recruits to be proficient in Irish by 2030

Minister of State for the Gaeltacht Jack Chambers said the amendment to the Official Languages Bill will "strengthen the status of the Irish language within the State".
Changes to Languages Bill to require 20% of public service recruits to be proficient in Irish by 2030

One fifth of new public sector recruits will be required to be proficient in Irish by December 31st, 2030 under changes to the Official Languages Bill.

The Government announced the move on Thursday, which will also introduce a requirement that 20 per cent of public advertising by public bodies be done through Irish, 5 per cent of which must appear in Irish-language based media.

A statement from the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts and the Gaeltacht on Thursday confirmed 32 amendments to the Bill have been accepted.

The amendments also include that all ICT systems used by public officials must be able to produce a "síneadh fada" to allow for the accurate spelling of Irish names and words.

The Bill will also give legal status to the Placenames Committee, replacing the Placenames Commission, which will advise on the making of Placename Orders.

Any commercial operator providing public services under contract to a public body must also make provisions for use of the Irish language as part of those services, the statement added.

Commenting on the changes, Minister of State for the Gaeltacht Jack Chambers said he and the Minister for the Gaeltacht Catherine Martin feel the changes will "strengthen the status of the Irish language within the State, ensuring consistently high quality Irish language services within the public service for those in the Irish speaking community and in Gaeltacht areas".

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