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Minister for Outsourcing Responsibilities is refusing to engage with Irish language – Peadar Tóibín TD

27 September, 2017

Sinn Féin spokesperson on the Irish Language, Peadar Tóibín TD has criticised Minister Heather Humphrey’s continual refusal to engage with Irish language and Gaeltacht issues.

Speaking in the Dáil today Deputy Tóibín said:

“To be in charge of her brief the Minister needs to be on top of the information which is critical to developing and growing the Irish language. She cannot achieve this by continuously snubbing Irish language and Gaeltacht organisations.

“Since 2014 she admits to having only meeting two Irish language organisations. That is a complete dereliction of her duties, leaving Irish completely to her junior minister indicates that it is a junior priority for her.

"The Irish language has been gutted, far more than most, in budgetary terms over the last ten years, yet this disinterested Minister does not understand the crises at the heart of the Gealtacht.

“Fine Gael launched to much fanfare a number of years ago the new Irish language plans for the Gaeltacht. They have completely refused to provide the necessary funding for them to function. 

"Morale in the Gealtacht has collapsed as a result. And some wonder if the Irish language plans had been develop through hard work and effort should now be just binned.

“The critical measure of Fine Gael’s success when it comes to the Irish language is the numbers of people using the language on a daily basis in the Gaeltacht and outside. According to the Census this number is falling rapidly.

“The Minister needs to put her money where her mouth is or we will be talking about the Irish language as a community language in the past tense.”

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