Language campaigners have condemned a Minister's decision today (Tuesday, 20th March) to reject cross-party recommendations for patients to receive health care in Welsh.
In a report on the Welsh language Standards – duties supposed to create language rights for patients and staff in the health service – members of every party in the Assembly had called for amendments to secure rights to GP services and face-to-face health care in Welsh. However, the Minister Eluned Morgan, Labour Assembly Member for mid and west Wales, refused to accept any changes to the language duties in a debate in the Senedd.
Responding to the news, Heledd Gwyndaf, Chair of Cymdeithas yr Iaith commented:
"The Minister has made an anti-Welsh language decision. She has refused to listen to a cross-party committee. There's a pattern developing of a Minister who presses ahead with plans to weaken people's language rights: today with these regulations, but also with her plans for a backward-looking Welsh Language Bill. The Welsh language and Welsh-speaking patients are going to lose out because of her decision. "