Edinburgh Council has today approved a new Gaelic Language Plan with the aim of increasing its use in the Lothians.
The Gaelic Language Plan 2018-22 was agreed at a meeting of the Corporate Policy and Strategy Committee.
It will now go to Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the Scottish Government body responsible for Gaelic, for their consideration and approval.
This is the second Gaelic Language Plan produced by the Council and builds on the success of the previous one which saw the expansion of early Gaelic Medium Education (GME), a new GME primary school Taobh na Pàirce and improved community relations with Gaelic communities.
Consultation on the draft plan was carried out between October and December 2017 and received 556 responses.
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Findings included: 86% said it was positive that the Gaelic Community is seen to be thriving and growing, there is a need to raise awareness of the importance of Gaelic to Edinburgh residents and a desire for increased provision of Gaelic nursery care.
The plan also links in with the Edinburgh City Vision 2050 which states that Edinburgh aspires to be a connected, inspired, fair and thriving city – the Gaelic language and Gaelic communities are an integral part of that vision.
In addition to its statutory duty to produce a plan every five years, the Council’s business plan 2017-22 has a specific commitment to support the continued development of GME.
The Council is committed to working in partnership with Gaelic communities, organisations who deliver Gaelic services, Bòrd na Gàidhlig and the Scottish Government. The Council’s Gaelic Implementation Group has been instrumental in informing and shaping the content of the plan.
Councillor Alison Dickie, Gaelic Champion for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “Today’s approval of the Gaelic Language Plan should be seen by all as the Council’s commitment to further develop and embed Gaelic into the life of our beautifully diverse Edinburgh.
“In my short time as Gaelic Champion it has been a pleasure to work with members of the Gaelic Implementation Group to help shape this plan and to ensure a much more strategic, corporate and long term approach in its drafting, and in its delivery in the days ahead.
“Gaelic has been a major contribution to Scotland’s culture and identity throughout the years. The way forward is now a fusion of that past, this present and what can be its future as we sew more of its threads into the wonderful multi-cultural cloth that is this city.”