Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu - Y Bumed Senedd
Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee - Fifth Senedd04/10/2018
Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol
Committee Members in Attendance
|Bethan Sayed AM||Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor|
|David Melding AM|
|Jane Hutt AM|
|Jenny Rathbone AM|
|Mick Antoniw AM|
|Rhianon Passmore AM|
|Sian Gwenllian AM|
Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol
Others in Attendance
|Dyfan Sion||Cyfarwyddwr Strategol, Comisiynydd y Gymraeg|
|Strategic Director, Welsh Language Commissioner|
|Gwenith Price||Cyfarwyddwr Strategol, Comisiynydd y Gymraeg|
|Strategic Director, Welsh Language Commissioner|
|Gwyn Williams||Cyfarwyddwr Cyllid a Gwasanaethau Busnes, Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru|
|Director of Finance and Business Services, Arts Council for Wales|
|Meri Huws||Comisiynydd y Gymraeg|
|Welsh Language Commissioner|
|Nick Capaldi||Prif Weithredwr, Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru|
|Chief Executive, Arts Council of Wales|
Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol
Senedd Officials in Attendance
|Adam Vaughan||Dirprwy Glerc|
|Gwyn Griffiths||Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol|
|Martha Da Gama Howells||Ail Glerc|
Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.
The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.
Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 09:32.
The meeting began at 09:32.
Croeso i Bwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu. Eitem 1 yw'r cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datgan buddiannau. A oes gan unrhyw Aelod rywbeth i'w ddatgan yma heddiw? Nac oes.
Yn gyntaf: newidiadau i aelodaeth y pwyllgor. Er nad yw'n gallu bod yn bresennol yng nghyfarfod heddiw, ac mae wedi cynnig ei hymddiheuriadau, mae Caroline Jones wedi cael ei hethol fel aelod newydd o'r pwyllgor yn lle Neil Hamilton. Diolch i Neil Hamilton am ei waith ar y pwyllgor. Byddwch hefyd am groesawu Jane Hutt i'w chyfarfod cyntaf fel aelod o'r pwyllgor. Mae Ms Hutt yn cymryd lle Jack Sargeant, a byddwch hefyd am gynnig diolch i Jack am ei waith ar y pwyllgor.
Ymddiheuriadau a dirprwyon: fel y nodwyd, cafwyd ymddiheuriadau gan Caroline Jones. Nid ydym yn disgwyl unrhyw ddirprwyon. Ni chafwyd unrhyw ymddiheuriadau eraill.
Welcome to the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee. Item 1 is the introductions, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest. Does any Member have anything to declare this morning? No.
First of all: changes to committee membership. Although she's not able to attend today's meeting, and she has tendered her apologies, Caroline Jones has been elected as a new member of the committee in place of Neil Hamilton. Thank you to Neil Hamilton for his work on the committee. You'll also want to welcome Jane Hutt to her first meeting as a member of the committee. She replaces Jack Sargeant, and you will also wish to offer the committee's thanks for his work.
Apologies and substitutions: as noted, apologies were received from Caroline Jones. We do not expect any deputies. No other apologies were received.
Symudwn ymlaen gydag eitem 2, felly: gwaith craffu blynyddol ar Gomisiynydd y Gymraeg—rhan 1, yr adroddiad blynyddol. Croeso eto i Meri Huws, Comisiynydd y Gymraeg, ac i Dyfan Sion, cyfarwyddwr strategol. Fel rydych chi'n gwybod yn iawn erbyn hyn, bydd cwestiynau ar themâu gwahanol o fewn yr adroddiad blynyddol gan Aelodau. Felly, awn ni yn syth i mewn i gwestiynau.
Y cwestiwn cyntaf sydd gen i: a oes modd ichi roi cipolwg neu drosolwg o'r gyllideb yr ydych chi wedi ei chael fel comisiynydd, ac i roi eich barn chi, yn fras, yn strategol, ynglŷn â beth rydych chi wedi gallu ei wneud o fewn y gyllideb benodol honno?
Moving on to item 2, therefore: the annual scrutiny of the Welsh Language Commissioner—part 1, the annual report. Welcome again to Meri Huws, the Welsh Language Commissioner, and Dyfan Sion, strategic director. As you know very well by now, the questions will be on different themes within the annual report from Members. So, we'll go straight into questions.
The first question I have is: if you could provide us with an overview of the budget you have had as commissioner, and to provide us with a view, broadly speaking, strategically, on what you've been able to do within that specific budget?
Ocê, diolch yn fawr iawn, iawn. A diolch eto am y cyfle i ymddangos o flaen y pwyllgor. Nid yw'n teimlo'n hir oddi ar i fi ymddangos yn fan hyn, ac nid yw'n hir.
Reit, o ran y sefyllfa gyllidol, a gaf i ddechrau, rydw i'n credu, trwy edrych yn ôl ac wedyn sôn am y cyllid ochr yn ochr â hynny? Yn anorfod, dyma chweched adroddiad blynyddol Comisiynydd y Gymraeg. Fel rydw i'n dweud, yn anorfod, dyma'r cyfle olaf rydw i'n ei gael i wneud sylwadau fel Comisiynydd y Gymraeg. Erbyn adroddiad blynyddol y flwyddyn nesaf, fe fydd yna gomisiynydd arall yn eistedd yn y set yma. So, felly, rydw i'n bownd o edrych ar chwe blynedd o weithredu, ac edrych ar y gyllideb ochr yn ochr â hynny.
O ran beth rŷm ni wedi ei gyflawni yn gyntaf, a gaf i ddweud fy mod i'n falch iawn o'r hyn yr ydym ni wedi'i gyflawni o ran cyflwyno'r gyfundrefn safonau? Mae'r safonau yn fwy na jest mecanwaith o gydymffurfiaeth. Maen nhw wedi newid meddylfryd ar lawr gwlad, so rydw i'n credu ein bod ni, trwy ein gweithrediad, a gweithrediad y cyrff o dan safonau, wedi arwain at newid sylweddol.
Erbyn hyn, i'ch atgoffa chi, mae yna 104 o sefydliadau yn gweithio o dan safonau. Erbyn diwedd y flwyddyn hon, bydd yna 122 o gyrff yn gweithio o dan safonau oherwydd bod y cyrff iechyd wedi cael eu cynnwys. Wrth edrych ar ein gwaith ni ac wrth baratoi at y sesiwn yma heddiw, fe wnes i edrych nôl ar faint o gyrff sydd wedi mynd trwy’r broses ymchwiliad safonau, lle rŷm ni wedi gwneud y gwaith paratoi ar hyd y blynyddoedd diwethaf. Ac mae yna 382 o sefydliadau yng Nghymru sydd wedi mynd trwy’r broses ymchwiliad safonau, lle mae’r gwaith paratoi wedi’i wneud, lle mae yna adroddiad wedi cael ei gyflwyno i’r Llywodraeth ac nid ydyn nhw’n gweithredu o dan safonau. Felly, rŷch chi’n sôn am gymdeithasau tai, rŷch chi’n sôn am gwmnïau dŵr a charffosiaeth, rŷch chi’n sôn am y Post Brenhinol, rŷch chi’n sôn am rai sefydliadau Llywodraeth San Steffan a oedd yn dod o dan y ddeddfwriaeth, rŷch chi’n sôn am fysys a threnau Cymru, a’r diwydiant nwy. So, felly, mae yna lot wedi’i gyflawni ac mae yna lot yn fwy i’w gyflawni.
Mae hynny wedi digwydd o ran ochr statudol y safonau. Ochr yn ochr â hynny, mae’n rhaid imi gydnabod bod yna draweffaith wedi bod o ran y gwaith safonau ar sectorau hefyd. Rŷm ni’n clywed lot o sôn am hybu defnydd o fewn y sector busnes a’r trydydd sector, ac rydw i’n gallu gweld effaith meddylfryd safonau ar sefydliadau eraill. Hefyd, rydw i’n gallu gweld traweffaith ein gwaith ni gyda’r sefydliadau hynny, a gwaith Llywodraeth Cymru gyda’r sefydliadau hynny hefyd. Mae lot wedi’i gyflawni, yn arbennig pan rŷch chi’n edrych ar hynny o fewn cyfnod o chwe blynedd.
Y realiti noeth yw, yn ystod y tair blynedd diwethaf, mae ein cyllideb ni wedi bod yn gyllideb fflat. Mae hynny i’w ddeall oherwydd bod yna doriadau ar draws y sector cyhoeddus—nid wyf yn disgwyl y buasem ni’n cael ein trin yn wahanol. Ond mae wedi bod yn sialens. Ar hyn o bryd, rŷm ni’n derbyn £3,051,000 oddi wrth Lywodraeth Cymru—hynny'r un fath â llynedd, hynny'r un fath â’r flwyddyn gynt. So, felly, mae’r twf a’r cynnydd sydd wedi bod wedi digwydd o fewn cyllideb gyfyngedig.
Okay, thank you very, very much. And thank you for the opportunity to appear before the committee once again. It doesn't feel too long ago that I appeared here last, and it isn't that long ago.
Right, in terms of the financial situation, may I start, I think, by looking back and then discuss the funding in that context? Inevitably, this is the sixth annual report of the Welsh Language Commissioner. As I've said, inevitably this will be my last opportunity to make comments as Welsh Language Commissioner. By next year's report, there will be a new commissioner in post. So, I am bound to look at six years of operation, and look at the budget in relation to that.
In terms of what we've achieved first of all, may I say that I am very proud of what we've achieved in terms of introducing the standards system? Standards are more than a simple mechanism of compliance. They have changed the mindset on the ground, so I do believe that we, through our actions and the actions of those organisations subject to the standards, have led to significant change.
By now, to remind you, 104 organisations and institutions work to standards. By the end of this year, that will be up to 122 because the health bodies have been included. In looking at our work and in preparing for this session, I looked back at how many organisations have gone through the standards investigations process, where we've done the preparatory work. And 382 bodies in Wales have gone through that process, where the preparatory work has been done and a report has been presented to Government and they aren't working to standards. So, you're talking about housing associations, you're talking about the water and sewage companies, you're talking about the Royal Mail, you're talking about certain Westminster Government bodies captured under the legislation, you're talking about buses and trains in Wales, and the gas industry. So, a great deal has been achieved, but there's a great deal more to be done.
That's happened in terms of the statutory side of the standards. Along with that, I have to admit that there has been an impact in terms of standards work on other sectors as well. We hear a lot of talk about promoting the use of Welsh within the business sector and the third sector, and I can see the impact of the mindset of standards on other institutions and organisations. I can also see the impact of our work with those organisations, and the work of the Welsh Government too. A great deal has been achieved, particularly when you look at that over that six-year period.
The reality of the situation is that over the past three years, our budget has flatlined. That's understandable because there are cuts across the public sector—I wouldn't expect us to have been treated differently. But it has been challenging. At the moment, we receive £3,051,000 from the Welsh Government, which is the same figure as last year and the previous year. So, the progress that's been made has happened within a restricted budget.
Fe gawn ni fwy o gwestiynau gan David Melding. Nid wyf eisiau gofyn gormod o ran manylder ar y gyllideb nawr, ond beth roeddwn i eisiau dod nôl ato oedd: rydych chi'n sôn am yr ymchwiliadau—ac fe wnaethoch chi sôn am hynny yn y sesiwn diwethaf hefyd—a fyddech chi eisiau newid y ddeddfwriaeth fel bod y comisiynydd yn gallu mynd ati i roi'r safonau ar gyrff fel hyn? I fi, mae'n edrych yn od eich bod chi wedi gwneud y gwaith ond nad ydyn nhw wedi cael eu gweithredu. A ydych chi'n credu bod yna le i'r ddeddfwriaeth—paid meddwl am y ddeddfwriaeth y mae'r Llywodraeth wedi'i chynnig ar hyn o bryd—a bod modd i chi gallu dweud, ‘Wel, dyma beth rydym ni wedi’i wneud. Rydym ni nawr am roi’r safonau yna ar y cyrff penodol yma’?
We'll have more question form David Melding. I don't want to ask any more with regard to detail on the budget now, but what I wanted to come back to is that you mentioned those investigations—and you mentioned that in the previous session as well—would you want to change the legislation so that the commissioner can place standards on bodies such as these? To me, it looks strange that you have done the work but they haven't been implemented. Do you think there's a means for the legislation—don't think of the legislation that the Government has proposed at the moment—and a means whereby you can say, 'This is what we've done. We now want to place those standards on these specific bodies'?
Rydw i'n credu bod y ddeddfwriaeth sydd gyda ni ar hyn o bryd yn caniatáu ddim i ni osod y safonau ond i Lywodraeth basio’r rheoliadau ar waith sydd wedi cael ei wneud yn barod.
I think the legislation that we currently have doesn't allow us to impose the standards but for the Government to pass regulations on work that has already been done.
Ie, ond dyna beth rwy'n ei ddweud: a fyddech chi eisiau newid y system hynny fel nad oes angen y rheoliadau ac fel eich bod chi wedyn yn gallu—? Neu, na—?
Yes, but that's what I'm saying: would you want to change that system so that those regulations would not be needed so that you could then—? Or not?
Nid wyf i'n credu bod hynny'n bosib yn gyfansoddiadol. Rydw i'n credu ei bod hi’n bwysig, o’n rhan ni, fod y rheoliadau yn dod o Lywodraeth Cymru. Wrth gwrs, ni sydd yn eu gosod nhw ar y sefydliadau; cael eu pasio maen nhw’n fan hyn. Ni sy’n mynd trwy’r broses o’u gosod nhw. A dyna sydd yn y ddeddfwriaeth bresennol a dyna sydd wedi digwydd gyda’r sefydliadau—rŷm ni wedi mynd trwy’r broses gyda sefydliadau addysg bellach a phrifysgolion yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf ac rŷm ni’n gwneud hynny nawr gyda'r sefydliadau iechyd. So, rydw i’n credu—nid oes angen newid y ddeddfwriaeth. Beth fuaswn i’n dymuno yw gweld rheoliadau’n cael eu cyflwyno er mwyn caniatáu i’r sefydliadau yna ddod o dan yr un ymbarél. Mae’n rhaid imi ddweud, rydw i’n gweld manteision hynny, oherwydd bod sefydliadau’n dysgu oddi wrth ei gilydd; mae cymaint o arfer da’n cael ei rannu erbyn hyn ar draws sectorau. Rŷm ni’n colli cyfle.
I don't think that that is constitutionally possible. I think it's important, from our point of view, that the regulations do emerge from the Welsh Government. Of course, we impose them on institutions; they are passed in this place. We go through the process of implementing those standards. And that's what contained within the current legislation and that's what's happened with the organisations—we've gone through the process with further education and higher education organisations over the past year and we're currently doing that with the health bodies now. So, I don't think that we need to change the legislation. What I would want to see is regulations brought forward to allow those bodies to be included under that same standards umbrella. I have to say, I do see the benefits of that, because organisations learn from each other; there is so much good practice being shared now across sectors. We are missing an opportunity.
Jest sylw—hynny yw, mae'n amlwg bod yna lot o waith wedi cael ei wneud, a'r ymchwiliadau wedi cael eu cyflwyno, ac wedyn beth sy'n rhaid inni, fel pwyllgor, ddechrau dod i delerau â fo a deall yw beth sydd yn digwydd wedyn. Pam fod yna gyfnod hir iawn wedi bod lle nad ydy rhai o'r ymchwiliadau yma wedi trosglwyddo i ddod i mewn yn safonau? Mae yna ddarn o waith i ni fel pwyllgor i'w wneud, fe fyddwn i'n awgrymu, i weld beth ydy'r oedi yna o ran Llywodraeth—ai diffyg ewyllys, ai diffyg adnoddau, diffyg staff? Beth ydy'r broblem?
Just a comment—that is, it's clear that a lot of work has been done and the investigations have been presented, and then what we have to come to terms with and understand, as a committee, is what happens then. Why is there a long period where some of these investigations haven't transferred to become standards? There is a piece of work for us as a committee, I would suggest, to see what that delay is in terms of the Government—is it in terms of staff, lack of resources, goodwill? What's the problem?
Mae hynny'n rhywbeth rŷm ni'n gallu ei godi gyda'r Llywodraeth, yn sicr, pan maen nhw yn dod i mewn. Ond diolch am hynny, Siân.
David Melding, fe awn ni ymlaen at y gyllideb, felly. Diolch.
That's something we can raise with the Government, certainly, when they come in to give us evidence. Thank you for that, Siân.
David Melding, we will move on to the budget, therefore. Thank you.
Diolch yn fawr, Gadeirydd. Bore da.
Thank you, Chair. Good morning.
If we turn, then, to some specifics of the budget, I suppose the first thing that jumps out is that you overspent by £200,000, which is 7.5 per cent or something like that, which is a lot. So, what's the explanation for that?
Mae'r gorwariant yn hollol fwriadus; mae'n hollol strategol. O fod yn wynebu cyllideb fflat am gyfnod o dair blynedd, ac mi oedd yna arian wrth gefn—mi oeddem ni wedi cynllunio bod yna arian wrth gefn yn y sefydliad—fe wnaethom ni benderfyniad fel tîm rheoli, a gafodd ei gefnogi gan ein pwyllgor archwilio risg ni, i ddefnyddio peth o'r cyllid wrth gefn i sicrhau dau beth: cyflogaeth—ein cost fwyaf ni a'n hadnodd mwyaf ni yw swyddogion, pobl sydd allan yn gweithio gyda sefydliadau. Felly, fe wnaethom ni benderfyniad yn 2017-18 ein bod ni'n mynd i geisio cynnal ein criw o swyddogion i'r graddau y gallem ni—hynny yw, llenwi cyfnodau mamolaeth pan oedden nhw'n codi, a chyfnodau rhiant pan oedd hynny'n codi, a cheisio llenwi swyddi pan oedden nhw'n dod yn wag er mwyn cynnal y momentwm yna o fewn y sefydliad. Felly, roedd e'n fwriad i ddefnyddio arian wrth gefn i gyflogi ar gytundebau tymor byr i lenwi'r swyddi yna. Felly, dyna a wnaethom ni.
Fe wnaethom ni hefyd benderfyniad i fuddsoddi. Fel y gwelwch chi, mae yna linell rhaglenni o fewn ein cyllideb ni, ac fe wnaethom ni y llynedd, oherwydd y galw a oedd mewn meysydd, yn arbennig o ran defnydd iaith, fuddsoddi mewn deunyddiau. Fe wnaethom ni fuddsoddi mewn modiwl hyfforddiant i bobl sy'n hyfforddi yn y maes chwaraeon. Pam? Er mwyn cynyddu defnydd mewn sector lle rŷm ni'n gwybod bod pobl ifanc yn gallu defnyddio'r Gymraeg tu fas i'r ysgol. So, mi oedd y penderfyniadau i gyd yn rhai hollol fwriadus, hollol strategol, i gynyddu impact a thraweffaith ein gwaith ni.
Yr un peth arall fe sylwch chi yw ein bod ni wedi adnabod ymhob un o'n hadroddiadau blynyddol ni y buasai, ar ryw bwynt, gostau ychwanegol yn deillio o achosion tribiwnlys. Mae hynny wedi ei wireddu yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf. Nid ydyn nhw'n anferth, ond fe fuaswn i'n dweud bod rhyw £38,000, rhwng costau cyfreithiol a chostau tribiwnlys, yn gostau ychwanegol arnom ni. Mi oeddem ni wedi gosod arian wrth gefn i ddelio â hynny.
The overspend is entirely intentional and strategic. Having faced a flat budget over a period of three years, and we did have reserves—we had planned to have reserves within the organisation—we made a decision as a management team, and this was supported by our risk and audit committee, to use some of those reserves to secure two things: first of all, employment—our biggest cost and our biggest resource is our officials, those people working with organisations. So, we decided in 2017-18 that we would try to maintain our core of officials as much as we could—that is, to cover maternity periods when they arose, and parental leave, and trying to fill posts when they became vacant in order to maintain that momentum within the institution. So, it was an intention to use reserves in order to employ staff on short-term contracts to fill those roles. So, that's what we did.
We also made a decision to invest. As you will see, there is a programmes line within our budget, and last year, because of the demand, particularly in terms of the use of language, we invested in materials. We did make a decision to invest in a training module for people working in sport. Why? In order to increase usage in a sector where we know that young people are able to use the Welsh language outwith school. So, those decisions were all entirely intentional and strategic in order to increase the impact of our work.
The other thing that you may note is that we had identified in each of our annual reports that, at some point, there would be additional costs emerging from tribunal cases. That has been the case over the past year. They're not huge costs, but I would say that there have been some £38,000, between tribunal costs and legal costs, of additional costs on us. We had reserves in order to deal with that.
Okay. You say this overspend was planned, but from my reading, you've spent £60,000 more than was in your budget for legal and professional costs, so that's a 30 per cent overspend. And you've also spent an additional £22,000 relating to the office lease, and that had not been foreseen and placed in the budget. So, it's difficult, I think, to reconcile that getting on for at least half the overspend cannot be accounted for in a planned decision, for the various reasons that you indicated—to go over your actual allocated budget for the last financial year.
Rydw i'n cofio eistedd fan hyn y flwyddyn ddiwethaf a nodi na fuaswn i ddim yn gwybod, tan fod achosion tribiwnlys yn codi, beth fuasai'r costau cyfreithiol arnom ni fel sefydliad. Rŷm ni wedi nodi hynny bob blwyddyn yn ein hadroddiad blynyddol.
I remember sitting here last year and noting that I wouldn't know, until tribunal cases would arise, what the legal costs would be on us as an organisation. We have noted that every year in our annual report.
Can I interrupt you? That's separate again—that's £16,000 more than you anticipated—but the general legal and professional costs are 30 per cent more than you predicted. Those, presumably, are costs we would normally expect you to get—closer than being 30 per cent out, anyway.
Mae'r costau yn ymddangos yn £16,000. Mae yna gostau cyfreithiol wrth baratoi tuag at faterion a allai fynd yn achosion tribiwnlys yn y £22,000 yna rŷm ni'n sôn am, o ran costau cyfreithiol. Rŷch chi wedi sôn am y les. Fe gawsom ni gais gan ein landlord yng Nghaernarfon i symud swyddfa oherwydd bod Llywodraeth Cymru eisiau cymryd ein swyddfeydd ni drosodd yn fanna. Felly, nid oedd hynny ddim yn rhywbeth—. Fe ddigwyddodd hynny yn y tymor byr, ac fe wnaethom ni ymateb.
Ar yr un pryd, fe ddaeth hi'n amlwg bod ein hadeilad ni yng Nghaerdydd ar werth, ac felly roedd rhaid inni wneud rhywfaint o waith o gwmpas y les yng Nghaerdydd hefyd. Mae hynny, diolch byth, wedi'i sortio erbyn hyn. Felly, mi oedd y rheini yn gostau a gododd heb ein bod ni'n gwybod y buasen nhw'n codi, a heb ein bod ni wedi gallu cynllunio amdanyn nhw.
The costs appear as £16,000. There are legal costs in preparing towards issues that could be tribunal cases in the £22,000 that we mentioned, in terms of legal costs. You've mentioned the lease. We had a request from our landlord in Caernarfon to move office because the Welsh Government wanted to take over our offices there. Therefore, that wasn't something—. That happened in the short term, and we responded.
At the same time, it became apparent that our building in Cardiff was for sale, and therefore we had to undertake some work around the lease in Cardiff as well. That, thank goodness, has been sorted. So, those were costs that arose without us knowing that they would arise, and without us having been able to plan for them.
Jest gofyn yn sgil hynny: beth ydy'r cynlluniau tymor hir o ran lleoliadau? A fydd yna bresenoldeb yn parhau yng Nghaernarfon, a lle bydd y swyddfa yn y tymor hir yng Nghaerdydd?
Just in light of that, what are the long-term plans in terms of office space? Will you continue to have a presence in Caernarfon, and where will the office be located in Cardiff?
Mae'r sefyllfa yng Nghaernarfon yn awr wedi'i sortio. Mae yna swyddfeydd newydd o dan yr un landlord. Mae e wedi ein symud ni i swyddfeydd eraill. Mae hynny wedi gweithio'n dda oherwydd ei fod yn golygu bod ein swyddogion ni i gyd yn yr un ystafell yng Nghaernarfon. So, felly, mae hynny wedi sefydlogi pethau.
O ran Caerdydd, mae yna landlord newydd. Mae'r adeilad wedi cael ei werthu, ac mae'r landlord newydd ar hyn o bryd yn buddsoddi yn yr adeilad. Ac felly, rŷm ni wedi gwneud penderfyniad i aros yno, ac rŷm ni wedi cytuno les 10 mlynedd gyda thoriad pum mlynedd.
The situation in Caernarfon is now sorted. We have new offices under the same landlord. He has moved us to other office space, which has worked well, because it means that our officials are all in that same room in Caernarfon. So, that has stabilised the situation there.
In terms of Cardiff, there is a new landlord. The building has been sold, and the new landlord is currently investing in the building. And therefore, we've made the decision to remain there, and we have agreed a 10-year lease with a five-year cut-off.
Ocê. Sori, David—mae Rhianon Passmore eisiau dod i mewn yn glou.
Okay. Sorry, David—Rhianon Passmore wants to come in quickly.
Diolch. It's just really in terms of the consultancy fee. I accept fully in terms of the dynamic situation around offices; there are similar situations everywhere. So, I just really want to understand why a consultancy would be involved in that, and not members of staff.
Fe gododd sefyllfa arbennig yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf oherwydd nad oedd un o'n swyddogion ni a oedd yn delio'n uniongyrchol â chyllid, ac felly'n gyfrifydd, yn gallu darparu ei wasanaethau am gyfnod. Felly, roedd yn rhaid inni brynu i mewn adnodd i gadw'r sefydliad i fynd.
A particular situation arose during the last year because one of our officials who dealt directly with finance, and was an accountant, wasn't able to provide services for a period of time. Therefore, we had to buy in that resource in order to keep the organisation moving.
So, the overspend, as you said, was planned, so it went before the board. There's a special part in your draft budget that highlighted that you would be about £200,000 over the allocation you received from Government, and the board signed that off.
Nid oes yna ddim bwrdd.
There is no board.
Whatever your audit structure is. Excuse me.
Do. Ac fe aeth hynny drwy brosesau ein harchwilwyr mewnol a Swyddfa Archwilio Cymru.
Yes. And that went through the processes of our internal auditors and the Wales Audit Office.
And do you plan an overspend in the current financial year?
Os edrychwch chi ar y gyllideb sydd yn fan hyn, mae yna orwariant yn cael ei gynllunio. Nid yw'n sylweddol ar hyn o bryd. Rŷm ni'n sôn am ychydig o filoedd eto yn deillio o anghenion cyflogaeth. Rŷm ni yn ceisio cadw ein cwota swyddogion ni ar y rhicyn arferol er mwyn cynnal ein gwaith ni, er y dylwn i nodi, erbyn diwedd y flwyddyn ariannol yma, byddwn ni ddim yn gallu cyllido 4.4 o swyddi. Nid yw hynny'n swnio'n lot, ond mae'n 10 y cant o'n swyddogion ni.
If you look at the budget that's here, there is an overspend being planned. It's not significant at the moment. We're talking about a few thousand again, stemming from employment issues. We are trying to keep our quota of officials at the same level in order to maintain our work, but I should note that by the end of this financial year, we will not be able to fund 4.4 posts. That doesn't sound much, but it is 10 per cent of our officials.
So, for the new commissioner, then, when that person is making the financial plans, the current sustainability of the work—would that have been addressed by you in your final year, or will you be leaving that as work in progress, then, if I can put it politely?
Rŷm ni wedi cynhyrchu ac wedi cyflwyno i'r Llywodraeth amcangyfrif at y flwyddyn nesaf, ac mae hynny yn nwylo'r Gweinidog. Mae hynny'n dangos, os cawn ni gyllideb fflat, mi fydd hi'n dynn ar y comisiynydd newydd, ac rŷm ni'n tynnu sylw at hynny, ac wedi nodi lle fuasai arian ychwanegol yn ddefnyddiol, ac rŷm ni wedi bwrw hynny ymlaen flwyddyn yn ychwanegol hefyd yn ein hamcangyfrif. So, mae yna waith wedi cael ei wneud i'r comisiynydd newydd.
We have produced and we have presented to the Government an estimate for the next year, and that is in the hands of the Minister. That shows that, if we have a flat budget, it will be tight on the new commissioner, and we do draw attention to that, and we have noted where additional funding would be useful, and we have moved that forward an additional year in our estimate. So, work has been undertaken for the new commissioner.
So, we've been in a position where reserves were roughly £700,000, they've come down to about £500,000 and you are prepared to justify—well, you have said that that was justified and approved as a strategic choice. I think if you combine unexpected legal costs at £100,000 and a 5 per cent reserve at £150,000, you're talking about having to have £250,000 held in reserve as an absolute minimum. So, that leaves an active reserve at the moment of about £250,000. Will your successor be able to make the sort of strategic choices you have made early in their term? Or is there a real issue now that reserves have run too low?
O wneud y symiau, ac wrth ein bod ni wedi cymryd cyngor a bwrw'r gyllideb ymlaen ddwy flynedd, fe fydd yn y pot, os ydy'r gwariant presennol yn parhau ar y lefel bresennol a'r gyllideb yn parhau ar y lefel bresennol—mi fyddwn ni lawr i £64,000 wrth gefn.
In doing the math, and in having taken advice and cast the budget forward two years, if the current expenditure remains at its current level and if the budget remains at its current level, we will be down to £64,000 in reserve.
Which is obviously unsustainable. That does not leave your successor with the ideal situation of being able to manage a rapidly changing and challenging financial situation, so you'd expect something in reserves to be able to get you through a period of restructuring.
Erbyn diwedd 2021 yw hynny. Felly, rŷm ni yn bwrw hynny ymlaen yn sylweddol.
That's by the end of 2021. So, we are knocking that forward significantly.
Ocê. Symudwn ymlaen yn awr at safonau. Jane Hutt.
Okay. Moving on now to standards and Jane Hutt.
Diolch yn fawr. Bore da, Meri. Obviously, the Minister for Welsh Language and Lifelong Learning's announcement that further standards won't be introduced for the time being—what impact will that have on the commissioner's regulatory work?
Diolch yn fawr. A gaf i gyflwyno Dyfan Sion? Dyfan yw'r cyfarwyddwr sydd â chyfrifoldeb am y tîm gosod safonau, ac felly rydw i'n mynd i ofyn i Dyfan bigo lan yn y man cyntaf.
Thank you very much. May I introduce Dyfan Sion? Dyfan is the director with responsibility for the team looking at standards, and I will ask Dyfan to pick up in the first place.
Diolch yn fawr. O ran yr effaith uniongyrchol, rydym ni wedi cyrraedd pwynt rŵan lle rydym yn gweithio efo'r cyrff iechyd, y sector iechyd, ar hyn o bryd ar gyflwyno safonau, a dyna'r sector olaf y byddwn ni'n gallu gweithio efo nhw ar hyn o bryd. Nid oes yna reoliadau safonau eraill wedi dod drwy'r system eto. Felly, fel y gwnaeth Meri gyfeirio ato fo yn gynharach, unwaith bydd y safonau yna'n weithredol, mi fydd dros 120 o gyrff cyhoeddus yng Nghymru yn gweithredu'r safonau, a fydd yn cynnwys awdurdodau lleol, colegau, prifysgolion, gwasanaethau tân, heddluoedd, ac yn y blaen. Ond byddwn ni ddim wedyn yn gallu gosod a chyflwyno safonau ar fwy o gyrff. Mae yna sefydliadau lle rydym wedi cychwyn y camau cyntaf o fapio ac ymgynghori efo nhw, fel cymdeithasau tai, er enghraifft. Felly, byddwn ni ddim yn gallu mynd ati i osod safonau arnyn nhw.
Mi fydd ein gwaith rheoleiddio ni yn parhau yn amlwg, a'r gwaith arall rydym ni'n ei wneud o ran rhoi cyngor, ond mae o'n golygu bydd na ddim mwy o safonau. Efallai bydd rhaid inni ystyried hefyd weithio ar gyfundrefn o dan y ddeddfwriaeth flaenorol, sef cynlluniau iaith o dan Ddeddf 1993.
Thank you very much. In terms of the direct impact, we've reached a point now where we're working with the health sector at the moment in terms of introducing standards, and that will be the final sector that we will be able to work with for the time being. There are no other standards regulations that have come through the system as of yet. So, as Meri mentioned earlier, once those standards are in place, then over 120 public bodies in Wales will be implementing standards, which will include local authorities, colleges and universities, fire services, police forces, and so on and so forth. But we will then not be able to introduce further standards on additional organisations. There are organisations we have taken those initial steps of mapping and consulting with, such as housing associations, for example, but we won't be able to impose standards in those areas.
Clearly, our regulatory work will continue, as well as the other work that we do in providing advice, but it does mean that there will be no more standards. We may have to consider working on a regime under the previous legislation, which was the language schemes under the 1993 Act.
Diolch. And just your views, perhaps, to follow that up, on the impact of that decision on the rights of Welsh speakers.
Beth rydym ni'n ei weld ydy bod yna wahaniaeth o ran y ffordd mae cyrff sy'n gweithredu safonau yn darparu gwasanaethau a chyrff sy'n gweithredu cynlluniau iaith. Felly, yn sicr, yn gyffredinol, rydym ni'n gweld ansawdd a hygyrchedd gwasanaethau Cymraeg cyrff sydd o dan y safonau yn well na chyrff sydd o dan gynlluniau iaith. Felly, mae peidio ag ehangu, wedyn, safonau i gyrff eraill yn sicr yn mynd i gael effaith, ac mae yna bethau ychwanegol rydym ni'n gallu gwneud o dan y safonau hefyd, fel gorfodi ac ati, nad ydym ni'n gallu eu gwneud efo cynlluniau iaith. Felly, mi fydd hynny yn impact, wedyn, ar y siaradwyr Cymraeg, o bosibl.
What we see is that there is a difference in terms of the way organisations subject to standards provide services and those working to Welsh language schemes. So, certainly, generally speaking, we see the quality and accessibility of Welsh language services being improved when organisations are under standards, as opposed to those organisations working to Welsh language schemes. So, not rolling out standards to other bodies, then, is certainly going to have an impact, and there are additional things that we can do under standards too, such as enforcement and so on, that we are unable to do with Welsh language schemes. So, that will be an impact, then, on Welsh speakers, possibly.
So, how many organisations still operate language schemes?
Mae yna dal rai cannoedd o gyrff yn gweithredu cynlluniau iaith. Os ydych chi'n ystyried cyrff y Goron, hynny ydy cyrff Prydeinig sydd yn darparu gwasanaethau yng Nghymru, mae yna sectorau fel cymdeithasau tai, a hefyd cyrff llai, fel cynghorau tref a chymuned hefyd. Mae'n bwysig dweud, rydw i'n meddwl, fod y gwaith o osod cynlluniau iaith, cytuno cynlluniau iaith, efo cyrff y Goron yn parhau beth bynnag, achos nid oedd hynny o fewn sgôp y Mesur fel yr oedd o. Felly, rydym ni yn gweithredu'r ddwy drefn, ond rydym ni yn gweld gwahaniaeth hefyd rhwng darpariaeth o dan un a'r llall.
There are still hundreds of organisations working to Welsh language schemes. If you consider Crown bodies, that is UK-wide bodies that do provide services in Wales, there are sectors such as housing associations, and smaller organisations such as town and community councils too. It's important to note, I think, that the work of agreeing language schemes with Crown bodies is ongoing in any case, because that wasn't within the scope of the Measure as drafted. So, we are working to the two systems, but we do also see a difference in provision under one as opposed to the other.
And, of course, there are organisations that are named in the Measure, in the Schedules of the 2011 Measure, but have no language duty placed upon them, I understand. Do you find that acceptable?
Wel, mae yna sefydliadau, fel y sectorau nwy a thrydan, y sector trenau a bysiau ac ati a gafodd eu henwi yn y Mesur, lle rydym ni wedi gwneud gwaith cychwynnol efo nhw, ond yn amlwg, fel rydych chi'n ei ddweud, nid ydym ni'n gallu gosod safonau arnyn nhw yn benodol eto oherwydd diffyg rheoliadau. Ac yn eu hachos nhw, nid oes yna ddim cynllun iaith chwaith, felly mae unrhyw waith sy'n digwydd ar hyn o bryd ar lefel wirfoddol. Rydym ni yn gallu eu cynghori nhw a'u hannog nhw, ond mae yna wahaniaeth, wedyn, lle nad oes yna unrhyw fath o orfodaeth. Felly, mae hynny'n sefyllfa—. Rydw i'n meddwl ein bod ni wedi datgan yn barod ein bod ni'n dymuno gweld y cyrff sydd wedi eu henwi yn y Mesur—ein bod ni'n gallu gosod y safonau arnyn nhw hefyd.
Well, there are organisations, such as the gas and electricity sectors, the bus and trains sectors and so on that were named in the Measure, where we have done some preparatory work with them, but clearly, as you've said, we are unable to impose standards specifically because of the absence of the regulations. And in those cases, there is no language scheme either, so any work that happens at the moment is on a voluntary level. We can advise them and encourage them, of course, but there is a difference where there is no kind of enforcement available to us. So, that is a situation—. I think we've made this point in the past, that we would want to see those organisations named in the Measure—for us to be able to set standards for them too.
Fe ddylwn i hefyd, rydw i'n credu, dynnu sylw at sefydliadau sydd wedi cael eu creu oddi ar pasio'r ddeddfwriaeth—sefydliadau cenedlaethol fel Cymwysterau Cymru, fel y corff Addysg a Gwella Iechyd Cymru ac eraill. Mae yna restr ohonyn nhw. Buasai rhai ohonyn nhw'n dymuno cael eu henwi a dod o dan y gyfundrefn safonau, ac i eraill fe fuasai'n hwyluso eu gwaith nhw o ddydd i ddydd. Ac rydw i'n credu bod hynny yn rhwystredig i ni—nad yw'r cyrff yna, sydd mor bwysig yng nghyfundrefn Cymru, ac yn nhrefniadaeth Cymru, yn gallu dod o dan y gyfundrefn safonau yn rhwydd.
I should also draw attention, I think, to organisations that have been created since passing the legislation—national organisations such as Qualifications Wales, such as the Health Education and Improvement Wales body and others. There is a list of them. Some of them would wish to be named and to come under the standards regime, and for others it would facilitate their work from day to day. And I think that is frustrating for us—that those bodies, which are so important in the Welsh system, cannot come under the standards system easily.
You gave evidence, obviously, in the inquiry, commissioner, into the Welsh language Measure. Do you want to expand at all on that point about whether there should be a way found to allow imposition of standards on organisations currently operating Welsh language schemes?
Soniais i yn y sesiwn bythefnos yn ôl am y sefydliadau yna. I ddweud y gwir, mae yna un sefydliad sydd wedi dod o dan y gyfundrefn safonau drwy gael ei enwi, sef Gofal Cymdeithasol Cymru, yn gorff newydd. Mae hynny wedi digwydd mor hwylus, ac maen nhw wedi camu i mewn o dan reoliadau a oedd yn bodoli yn barod. Ac rydw i yn credu bod hynny yn rhywbeth i'w ystyried. Mae yna chwech set o reoliadau wedi cael eu pasio. A oes modd defnyddio'r rheoliadau yna sy'n bodoli yn barod i ddwyn i mewn sefydliadau eraill, drwy broses o enwi drwy reoliadau ar lawr y Cynulliad? Dim angen drafftio setiau newydd o safonau—a oes yna setiau o safonau a fuasai yn ddefnyddiol ar y llyfrau yn barod?
I mentioned in our session a fortnight ago those organisations. Now, truth be told, there is one that has been captured under the standards system through being named, which is Social Care Wales, a new body. That has happened very easily, and they've stepped in under existing regulations, and I do think that that's something for consideration. There are six sets of regulations that have been passed. I wonder whether those regulations already in existence could be used to draw in other institutions and organisations, through a naming process through regulations made in the Assembly. You wouldn't need to draft new sets of standards. Are there sets of standards already in place, which may be useful, already on the books, as it were?
Ocê. Diolch, Jane. Symudwn ymlaen at ddylanwadu ar bolisi a deddfwriaeth a Siân Gwenllian.
Okay. Thank you, Jane. Moving on to influencing policy and legislation and Siân Gwenllian.
Diolch yn fawr. Bore da. Rydych chi wrth gwrs efo rôl o ddylanwadu ar bolisi a deddfwriaeth cenedlaethol. A fedrwch chi roi jest rhyw fras olwg? Mae yna ddwy flaenoriaeth wedi bod gennych chi, rydw i'n credu, dros y cyfnod diwethaf. Sut mae hi wedi bod yn mynd efo hynny?
Thank you very much. Good morning. You of course have a role of influencing policy and legislation on a national level. Could you provide us with an overview? There have been two priorities, I think, over the last period. How has it been going with that?
Ein blaenoriaeth ni, o ran y maes polisi, yw ceisio dylanwadu. Un o'r trafodaethau yn gynnar iawn yng nghyfnod y comisiynydd oedd i ba raddau y dylem ni edrych ar ddarnau eraill o ddeddfwriaeth, wrth iddyn nhw fynd drwy'r broses ddeddfu, a gofyn y cwestiwn, 'Ble mae'r Gymraeg a beth yw effaith hwn ar y Gymraeg?' Ac fe benderfynom ni fod hwnnw'n ddarn gwerthfawr o waith i'w wneud. Felly, rŷm ni wedi bod yn craffu ar ddeddfwriaeth o gynllunio i anghenion addysg ychwanegol. Rydym ni wedi bod yn edrych ar bob darn o ddeddfwriaeth a gofyn y cwestiwn. Mae wedi bod yn ddefnyddiol.
Soniais i yn fanna am y ddeddfwriaeth ar anghenion addysg ychwanegol—darn bach o ddeddfwriaeth mewn un ffordd, ond yn sylweddol bwysig i'r bobl hynny sydd yn manteisio o'r ddeddfwriaeth honno. Fe wnaethom ni gyflwyno tystiolaeth, fe wnaethom ni ymddangos o flaen y pwyllgor, ac rydw i'n gobeithio, rydw i yn teimlo, ein bod ni wedi cyfrannu at y newidiadau a ddigwyddodd yn y ddeddfwriaeth ddrafft yna. Fe fuodd yna gydnabyddiaeth. Mae hynny wedi digwydd mewn meysydd eraill hefyd, lle mae yna gyfeiriad at y Gymraeg. Y ddeddfwriaeth gofal cymdeithasol—eto, mae yna gyfeiriad at y Gymraeg yn y ddeddfwriaeth yna, sydd yn rhai blynyddoedd oed erbyn hyn.
Rŷch chi'n sôn am y meysydd lle rŷm ni wedi canolbwyntio darnau mwy o waith. Bu maes iechyd o bwys mawr o flynyddoedd cyntaf y comisiynydd a'r gwaith a wnaethom ni ar ofal sylfaenol. Rydw i yn credu bod hynny wedi cyfrannu at newid y drafodaeth o ran iechyd yng Nghymru—y ni ymysg eraill—ond nid ydym ni mwyach yn clywed, 'Pam mae'r Gymraeg yn bwysig?' Beth rŷm ni'n ei glywed nawr yw, 'Ble mae'r Gymraeg yn bwysig a sut y gallwn ateb yr angen hwnnw?' A rŷm ni wedi gweld hynny mewn meysydd fel iechyd meddwl. Mae'r Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg wedi gofyn i raglen Law yn Llaw wneud darn penodol o waith ynglŷn â CAMHS—y gwasanaethau iechyd i bobl ifanc—a'r Gymraeg, oherwydd ein bod ni wedi codi cwestiynau. Ac felly rŷm ni wedi gweld y drafodaeth o ran y maes iechyd—efallai nid yw gofal cymdeithasol mor gryf—lle mae ein cyfraniad ni wedi newid y naratif ac wedi cyfrannu at y naratif. Mae angen i hynny barhau. Rydw i mor falch o weld bod yna gyfeiriad at y Gymraeg yng nghytundeb meddygon teulu am y tro cyntaf erioed. Mae hynny'n hanesyddol, rydw i'n credu— rydw i'n credu y dylem ni fod yn cydnabod hynny—ond mae'r gwaith yna i'w barhau.
Maes arall—yr ail faes sydd wedi cymryd ein sylw ni yn ystod y blynyddoedd diwethaf—yw'r maes addysg. Mae hynny wedi digwydd am amryw o resymau, ond y ddau peth penodol: mae ein hadroddiad pum mlynedd ni, a welodd golau dydd yn 2016, yn tynnu ein sylw ni, ac eraill, at y ffaith bod, allan o bob plentyn sy'n siarad Cymraeg yng Nghymru rhwng tair a 15, pedwar allan o bob pump wedi dysgu'r Gymraeg yn yr ysgol—so, felly, pwysigrwydd y gyfundrefn addysg wrth greu siaradwyr.
Ar yr un pryd, roeddem ni'n mynegi consýrn nad oedd y cynlluniau strategol o ran addysg Gymraeg—y WESPs—yn cyflawni ac yn ddigon uchelgeisiol ac yn bwydo i mewn i gyfundrefn addysg oedd yn arloesol ac yn symud ymlaen. Felly, mae ein gwaith ni yn ystod y ddwy flynedd ddiwethaf—cyfnod yr adroddiad blynyddol yma ac eleni—yn edrych ar y maes yna. Rŷm ni wedi gwneud darn o waith ac wedi cyhoeddi nodyn cyngor ar y blynyddoedd cynnar. Mae yna ddarn o waith hefyd wedi cael ei wneud ynglŷn â phrentisiaethau, oherwydd ein bod ni'n teimlo'n gryf iawn bod y cyfnod cynnar, cynnar yna—cyn tair blwydd oed—mor bwysig o ran caffael iaith, a hefyd mae unrhyw fuddsoddiad sydd yn digwydd yn addysg ffurfiol, i fyny at 16, yn mynd ar goll os nad yw'r cyfnod ôl 16 yn rhan o'r WESPs ac yn rhan o gynllunio strategol. So, felly, dyna pam rŷm ni yn canolbwyntio ar y sector addysg ffurfiol, ond hefyd y cyn ac ar ôl hefyd.
Our priority, in terms of policy, is to seek to influence. One of the discussions very early on in the days of the commissioner was to what extent should we look at other pieces of legislation as they go through the legislation process and ask the question, 'Where is the Welsh language and what's the impact of this on the Welsh language?' And we decided that that was a valuable piece of work to be done. Therefore, we have been scrutinising legislation from planning to additional learning needs. We have been looking at every piece of legislation and asking that question. It has been useful.
I mentioned the additional learning needs legislation. It's a brief piece of legislation in one way, but significant to those people who will benefit from it. We presented evidence and we appeared before the committee and I very much hope, and I do feel, that we contributed to the changes that happened to that draft legislation. There was recognition of our evidence. That's happened in other areas too, where there is reference to the Welsh language. The social care legislation—again, there is specific reference to the Welsh language in that legislation, which has been on the statute book for some years now.
You mention those areas where we focused major pieces of work. Health has been of huge importance from the very early days of the commissioner and the work that we did on primary care. I do believe that that has contributed to changing the discourse in terms of health in Wales—we among others contributed to that—but we are no longer hearing, 'Why is the Welsh language important?' What we hear now is, 'Where is the Welsh language important and how can we meet those needs and demands?' We have seen that in areas such as mental health. The Children, Young People and Education Committee has asked the Law yn Llaw programme to do a specific piece of work on child and adolescent mental health services and the Welsh language because we raised questions in that area, and so we have seen the discourse in health—not so much in social care perhaps—where we've contributed to the narrative and changed it. That needs to continue and I'm so pleased to see a reference to the Welsh language in the GP contract for the very first time. That is historic, I think, and I think we should recognise that, but that work is ongoing.
Another area—the second area where we've focused attention over the past few years—is education. That's happened for a number of reasons, but there are two specifics: our five-year report, which was published in 2016, highlighted to us, and to others, the fact that, for every Welsh-speaking child in Wales between three and 15, four of every five have learnt Welsh at school. So, that emphasises the importance of the education system in creating Welsh speakers.
Simultaneously, we were expressing concern that the WESPs—the Welsh in education strategic plans—weren't delivering and weren't ambitious enough, and didn't feed into an education system that was innovative and forward-thinking. So, our work over the past two years—covering the period of this annual report and this year—has looked at those areas. We have done a piece of work and published an advice note on early years. There is another piece of work that's been done on apprenticeships, because we felt very strongly that that very early stage, before three years of age, is so very important in terms of language acquisition. And also, any investment that happens in formal education, up to 16, can be lost unless that post-16 sector is part of the WESPs and part of strategic planning. So, that's why we have focused on the education sector—the formal education sector, but also the pre-school and post-school too.
Dof i yn ôl at y ddau beth yna, ond, cyn hynny, a gaf i ofyn i chi—? Y maes cynllunio—rydw i'n gwybod bod yna rywfaint o waith wedi cael ei wneud gan swyddfa'r comisiynydd ar asesiadau effaith datblygiadau yn y maes cynllunio ar yr iaith Gymraeg. A ydych chi'n meddwl bod gennych chi fwy o gyfraniad i'w wneud yn y maes yma ers dyfodiad canllaw TAN 20, sydd yn rhoi pwyslais ar greu asesiadau iaith? Ai chi ddylai fod y corff statudol i roi cyngor pan fo materion iaith yn codi yn sgil ceisiadau cynllunio, fel y mae Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru yn ei wneud efo materion amgylcheddol?
I'll come back to both of those issues, but before that, may I ask you—? In the field of planning, I know that some work has been undertaken by the commissioner's office on assessments of the impact of developments in the planning field on the Welsh language. Do you think that you have more of a contribution to make in that area since the TAN 20 guidance, which does place that emphasis on language assessments? Should you be the statutory body to provide advice when language issues arise in planning applications, as NRW does with environmental issues?
A gaf i ofyn i Dyfan yn gyntaf dweud ychydig am beth rydym ni wedi ei wneud, ac wedyn fe wnawn ni ymateb i'r cwestiwn?
Can I ask Dyfan to say a few words about what we have done, and then we'll respond to that question?
Ocê, diolch. Yn arwain i fyny at y Ddeddf cynllunio yn 2016, fe wnaethom ni dipyn o waith yr adeg honno i weld beth oedd awdurdodau cynllunio Cymru yn ei wneud o ran asesu effaith ieithyddol. Felly, fe wnaethom ni ddarn o waith ymchwil jest i weld beth oedd yr arferion allan yna, faint o awdurdodau oedd yn cynnal asesiadau o gwbl, a sut roedden nhw'n eu gwneud nhw hefyd, gan gynnwys edrych ar y polisïau am iaith oedd mewn cynlluniau datblygu. Felly, fe wnaethom ni wneud darn o waith a bwydo tystiolaeth wedyn i mewn i'r broses craffu ar y ddeddf. Fel rydych chi'n gwybod, mae yna sail statudol i ystyried y Gymraeg o fewn y Ddeddf yna rŵan am y tro cyntaf yn y maes cynllunio.
Rwy'n meddwl—. Ers hynny, mae TAN 20 wedi cael ei gyhoeddi hefyd. Fe wnaethom ni ymateb i'r ymgynghoriad yna a rhoi barn ynglŷn â'r cynnwys. Un o'r pethau rydym ni yn ystyried eu gwneud yn y misoedd nesaf ydy edrych i weld sut mae'r awdurdodau cynllunio wedi ymateb i'r TAN newydd a pha asesiadau sy'n digwydd—felly, rhyw fath o ran 2, mewn gwirionedd, o'r gwaith wnaethom ni ddwy neu dair blynedd yn ôl.
Nid wyf yn gwybod os wyt ti eisiau i mi barhau o ran y cwestiwn adnoddau.
Okay, thank you. Leading up to the 2016 planning Act, we did a fair bit of work to see what Welsh planning authorities were doing in terms of language impact assessment. We carried out a piece of work just to see what the practice was, how many authorities were holding such assessments at all and how they were doing that, and that included looking at the language policies in development plans. So, we carried out a piece of work and then we fed our evidence into the scrutiny process on that legislation. As you know, there is a statutory basis to give due consideration to the Welsh language in that legislation, and that's the first time it's happened in planning.
Since then, TAN 20 has been published. We responded to that consultation and expressed views on its content. One of the things that we are considering over the next few months is looking at how planning authorities have responded to that new TAN and what assessments are happening. So, it's a stage 2, if you like, of the work that we did two or three years ago.
I don't know if you want me to continue on to the question of resources.
Mi fuasai yna gwestiwn yn codi o ran adnoddau pe bai hynny'n digwydd, ond wrth gwrs mae'r safonau polisi sydd wedi cael eu gosod ar awdurdodau lleol a'r parciau cenedlaethol hefyd yn golygu bod hwn yn ystyriaeth oherwydd bod angen iddyn nhw wneud asesiad iaith wrth wneud pob penderfyniad polisi. Mae yn drafodaeth ar hyn o bryd gyda'r awdurdodau lleol sut maen nhw'n creu’r asesiadau iaith yna a sut maen nhw'n safoni'r asesiadau iaith yna drwy'r gyfundrefn safonau hefyd, buasai yn cael effaith ar gynllunio. So, felly, mae'r galw yn cynyddu am ddarn o waith yn y maes yna.
A question would arise in terms of resources if that happened, but of course the policy standards that have been imposed on local authorities and the national parks also mean that this is a consideration, because there is a need for them to undertake a language impact assessment for every policy decision. It is a discussion at the moment with the local authorities about how they create the language assessments and how they standardise them through the standards regime, which would have an impact on planning. So, the demand is increasing for a piece of work in that area.
Rydw i'n meddwl un sylw pellach y dylwn i'n ei wneud ydy nad ydy'r gymhariaeth rhyngom ni â Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru yn un teg iawn, nid wyf yn meddwl, o ran yr holl waith y maen nhw'n ei wneud efo asesiadau amgylcheddol a'r adnoddau sydd o amgylch hynny. Rydw i'n meddwl bod gennym ni rôl, yn sicr, ond mae yna drafodaeth i'w chael ynglŷn â beth yn union ydy hynny. Yn y cyfamser, mi ydym ni'n edrych i weld pa ddefnydd mae awdurdodau lleol yn ei wneud o'r Ddeddf a'r ddarpariaeth newydd yn honno.
One further comment I should make is that the comparison between ourselves and NRW isn't a fair one, in my view, in terms of all the work they do with environmental assessments and the resources attached to that. I do think we have a role, most certainly, but there is a discussion to be had as to what that should look like. In the meantime, we are considering what use local authorities are making of the legislation and the new provision.
Ocê, diolch. Jest troi yn sydyn felly at y ddau ddarn o waith rydych chi wedi eu gwneud eleni ar ofal plant a blynyddoedd cynnar, rydw i'n cofio gweld adroddiad hynod feirniadol yn sôn nad yw'r cynnig gofal plant sydd o dan ystyriaeth gan y Llywodraeth o hyd yn rhoi digon o sylw i anghenion y Gymraeg. A oes yna rywbeth wedi digwydd efo hynny?
Okay, thank you. Just turning suddenly to the two pieces of work that you've undertaken this year on childcare and early years, I remember seeing a very critical report mentioning that the childcare offer under consideration by the Government still doesn't place enough emphasis on the needs of the Welsh language. Has something happened with that?
Mae yna drafodaethau wedi bod gyda'r Gweinidog sydd â chyfrifoldeb am hynny. Rŷm ni wedi bwydo ein tystiolaeth ni i mewn i'r pwyllgor plant, ac rydw i yn deall bod y Bil cyllido gofal plant yn dechrau cymryd hyn i ystyriaeth. Fe fuaswn i'n cytuno bod angen meddwl yn hollol strategol ac mae angen i hyn gael ei strwythuro nid ar yr ymylon ond yn y cynnig o'r cychwyn a bod hynny ym mola'r cynnig yna o'r cychwyn.
There have been discussions with the Minister responsible for that area. We have fed our evidence into the children's committee, and I understand that the childcare funding Bill is starting to take this into account. I would agree that we need to think very strategically in this area and this needs to be structured not at the periphery but into the heart of the offer from the very outset and that should be a central part of that offer.
Wedyn, jest o ran y prentisiaethau, ychydig iawn o gynnydd sydd wedi digwydd yn fan hyn.
Then, just in terms of apprenticeships, very little progress has been made in this field.
Mae hwnnw'n faes o gonsýrn i ni. Mae yna gymaint o botensial yn y maes prentisiaethau i greu gweithlu dwyieithog ym meysydd iechyd, gofal, gofal cwsmer, gweinyddu, a'r holl weithgaredd lletygarwch, twristiaeth ac yn y blaen sydd gyda ni yng Nghymru. Mae yna gyfle fan hyn i gymryd cynnyrch addysg ffurfiol cyn 16 a'i fwydo drwyddo yn bibell i'r gweithlu, trwy prentisiaethau, trwy addysg bellach. Mae'r ffigurau yn ddychrynllyd o wael o ran y niferoedd ond hefyd, yn bwysicach na'r niferoedd, y cynnig sydd yna i bobl ifanc. Ffigurau—0.3 y cant o raglenni prentisiaeth sydd ag elfen dysgu drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg. Sut rŷm ni'n mynd i gynnal y bobl ifanc yna sydd â sgiliau ieithyddol os nad ydyn nhw'n cael rhywfaint o ymwneud drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg?
Buaswn i'n dadlau bod yna gyfle gwych. Rŷm ni'n edrych ar y cynllun cyflogadwyedd ar hyn o bryd. Rŷm ni'n edrych ar rôl y Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol o ran addysg bellach. Rŷm ni'n edrych ar y pecyn ôl 16, ac mae angen i ni wneud sawl peth. Mae angen i ni gael data ynglŷn â phobl sy'n gallu asesu yn y maes yma. Mae e mor bwysig gyda phrentisiaethau bod gyda chi aseswyr sydd â'r sgiliau galwedigaethol. Mae eisiau cael y data cychwynnol. Mae eisiau i ni wybod beth mae'r cyflogwyr ei angen, beth fydd eu hanghenion nhw. Nid yw'r data yna ar gael. Ac mae angen i ni edrych ar bwy sy'n mynd trwyddo i brentisiaethau ac addysg bellach. So, felly, mae angen data ac wedyn mae eisiau strategaeth genedlaethol yn y maes yma. Byddwn i wedi colli cyfle bendigedig os na ddigwyddiff y gwaith yna, fel rhan o'r cynllunio eto, o ran cyflogadwyedd.
That is an area of concern to us. There is so much potential in apprenticeships to create a bilingual workforce in health, in care, in customer care, administration, and all of the hospitality and tourism activity we have in Wales too. So, there is an opportunity here to use formal education pre 16 and to feed it through into the workforce through apprenticeships and through FE. The figures are frighteningly poor in terms of numbers but also, more important than the numbers, the offer available to young people. Figures—0.3 per cent of apprenticeship programmes have an element of teaching through the medium of Welsh. How can we support those people who have language skills unless they have at least some of that apprenticeship through the medium of Welsh?
I would argue that there is an excellent opportunity. We are looking at the employability plan at the moment. We are looking at the role of the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol in terms of FE. We are looking at the post-16 package, and we need to do a number of things. We need data on those able to assess in these areas. It is so important with apprenticeships that you have assessors who have those vocational skills. You need that initial data. We need to know what employers need, what their requirements are. That data isn't available. And we need to look at who is going through and moving into apprenticeships and FE. So, we need data and we need a national strategy in this area. We will have missed a wonderful opportunity if that work doesn't happen as part of the planning in terms of employability.
Diolch. Ocê. Diolch. Mae'n rhaid i ni symud ymlaen nawr. Mick Antoniw.
Thank you. We have to move on now. Mick Antoniw.
Part of your role in terms of promoting language within business is developing plans there. What your report indicates is that there's quite a high engagement level with a lot of businesses, but, when it comes to the actual development of plans, obviously, there's a very sharp fall-off leading to that. I just wonder if you could expand a little bit about the momentum of how that is working and what you see as some of the difficulties that you're facing and what the reason is for the low level of implementation of plans subsequently.
A wyt ti eisiau pigo hynny lan?
Do you want to pick that up?
Diolch. Wrth i ni weithio efo busnesau, yn amlwg, annog a pherswadio ydy ein gwaith ni'n bennaf. Beth rydym ni'n ceisio ei wneud ydy ei wneud o mor hawdd â phosib iddyn nhw gynyddu eu defnydd o'r Gymraeg.
Mae rhai pethau'n profi i fod yn fwy poblogaidd na'i gilydd o ran hynny. Mae gennym ni gynllun hybu, ond mae yna sawl lefel i hynny. Wedyn, y cam cyntaf, mewn gwirionedd, ydy hunanasesiad, lle mae sefydliad yn gallu edrych i weld beth ydy eu darpariaeth nhw ar hyn o bryd a chynllunio ar gyfer darparu mwy yn y dyfodol. Ac, yn ystod y flwyddyn adrodd yma, mi gawsom ni bron i 200 o fusnesau ac elusennau'n defnyddio hwnnw.
Cam pellach wedyn ydy iddyn nhw ddatblygu cynllun hybu—teclyn i gynllunio sut maen nhw'n mynd i gynyddu eu darpariaeth, ac, rydych chi'n gywir, mae yna lai o sefydliadau wedyn yn manteisio ar hynny. Ond beth rydym ni'n ceisio ei wneud hefyd ydy darparu cymorth ymarferol iddyn nhw. Felly, os nad ydyn nhw'n penderfynu mynd am y cynllun hybu llawn, mae gennym ni gymorth pellach iddyn nhw, fel sesiynau hyfforddiant. Felly, yn ystod y flwyddyn adrodd, roedd 60 sefydliad wedi manteisio ar hynny.
Rydym ni hefyd yn darparu canllawiau ar eu cyfer nhw, ac yn ceisio gwrando ar y busnesau a'r elusennau hefyd i weld beth maen nhw ei angen gennym ni. Felly, yn y misoedd diwethaf, rydym ni wedi darparu canllaw ar sut i ddefnyddio’r Gymraeg mewn cyfryngau cymdeithasol, ac un arall hefyd ar grantiau a chontractau.
Felly, oherwydd mai perswadio ac annog ydy'r gwaith, beth rydym ni'n ceisio ei sicrhau ydy bod yna gyfle eang a nifer o wahanol bethau sydd ar gael i'r busnesau—nid jest un trywydd yn unig.
Thank you. As we work with businesses, clearly, encouragement and persuading is the work that we do. What we're trying to do is to make it as easy as possible to expand their use of the Welsh language.
Some things prove to be more popular than others in terms of that. We have a promotion scheme, and there are many levels to that. The first step, really, is self-assessment, where an organisation can look to see what their provision is currently and plan for providing more in the future. And, during this reporting year, we had nearly 200 businesses and charities using that.
A further step then is for them to develop a promotion scheme—a tool to plan how they're going to increase their provision, and, you're right, fewer institutions and organisations have taken advantage of that. But what we're trying to do as well is to provide practical support for them. So, if they don't decide to go for the full scheme, we have further support for them, such as training sessions. Therefore, during the reporting year, 60 organisations took advantage of that.
We also provide guidance for them, and try to listen to the businesses and charities to see what they need from us. Therefore, in the last few months, we've provided guidance on how to use the Welsh language in social media, and another one on grants and contracts.
Therefore, because persuading and encouraging are the elements this work, what we're trying to ensure is that there is a wide range of opportunities and a number of different things available to businesses—not just one route to follow.
Un peth amlwg a diddorol sydd wedi amlygu ei hunan yn ystod y drafodaeth yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf yw bod rhai o'r busnesau yna yn dweud, 'Pe bai yna farc safon, neu farc ansawdd yn perthyn i'r cynllun yma, buasai gyda ni ddiddordeb mawr.' Ac felly mae hynny yn rhywbeth rŷm ni'n ei drafod yn fewnol ar hyn o bryd—a allwn ni ddatblygu rhywbeth sydd â rhywfaint o hygrededd iddo fe, ond hefyd bod busnes yn gallu dweud, 'Yr wyf wedi cyflawni hyn o ran y Gymraeg.' Felly, rŷm ni yn edrych ar hynny fel rhywbeth sydd yn ddeniadol iawn i fusnesau, mae’n amlwg, ac i sefydliadau sydd ddim o dan safonau.
One thing that has identified itself clearly and interestingly over the past year is that some of those businesses are telling us, 'If there was a quality mark attached to this scheme, we would be very interested in it.' So that's something that we're discussing internally at the moment—as to whether we can develop something that has some credibility, but also that a business can say, 'I have achieved this in terms of the Welsh language' and be recognised for that. So, we're looking at that as something that would be very attractive to businesses and to organisations not currently captured under standards.
So, a sort of Investor in People-type badging, which is quite important in getting companies to look at their governance systems and engagement systems, but an equivalent for the Welsh language. You think that would be something that might actually be a significant shift, in that way.
In terms of the fact that you’re looking at it, I mean, how advanced is your ‘looking at it’? Is it still just an idea, or is it something you’ve been doing groundwork on?
Rŷm ni wedi gwneud gwaith cychwynnol. Mi wnes i sôn ein bod ni newydd gyflwyno amcangyfrif i’r Gweinidog ac mae hynny’n un o’r cynlluniau penodol rŷm ni wedi’u hadnabod yn y cais cyllido at y flwyddyn nesaf—ein bod ni yn symud o’r gwaith cychwynnol rŷm ni wedi’i wneud gyda busnesau i rywbeth y gallem ni ei gyflawni o fewn y flwyddyn. Rŷm ni wedi gwneud gwaith tebyg gyda’r trydydd sector o gwmpas y system sicrhau ansawdd ymarferol i fudiadau bach—PQASSO. Mae yna elfen o fewn PQASSO yng Nghymru ar hyn o bryd sydd yn ymwneud â defnydd y trydydd sector o’r iaith Gymraeg; rydym ni wedi gallu ei wau i mewn i’r marc ansawdd yna.
We have done some initial work on it. I mentioned that we’ve just presented an estimate to the Minister and that’s one of the specific programmes that we have identified in our funding request for next year—that we move from our initial work carried out with businesses to something that we could deliver within the year. We have done similar work with the third sector around the practical quality assurance system for small organisations—PQASSO. There is an element within PQASSO in Wales at the moment that does relate to the third sector’s use of the Welsh language, and we’ve been able to tie it into that quality mark.
One of the areas that’s really interesting in terms of actual usage of language, because, obviously, the challenges of usage within business apply across the board in society, but the online work with regard to sport—. It seems as though you’ve had quite a phenomenal response, which indicates there’s a real interest there, and I was wondering if, perhaps, you could expand a little bit on how that has come about that you’ve had such a big response and how you’ve actually capitalised on utilising that response.
Eto, rydw i’n mynd i droi at Dyfan, ond a gaf i ddweud bod hwnnw’n un o’r darnau o waith lle roeddwn i, tair blynedd yn ôl, yn agnostic o ran a oedden nhw'n mynd i weithio? Rydw i wedi cael fy syfrdanu gan yr ymateb, fel rhywun sydd ddim yn berson chwaraeon. Rydw i'n wirioneddol wedi cael fy syfrdanu. Galli di sôn am sut mae wedi digwydd.
Again, I’m going to turn to Dyfan, but may I say that that is one of the pieces of work that I, three years ago, was agnostic about whether they were going to work or not? I have been surprised and stunned by the response to this, as somebody who isn’t one for sports. I have been really surprised by this. Perhaps you could mention how this has happened.
Rydw i yn berson chwaraeon. Rydw i’n meddwl pam y mae'r y gwaith yma’n bwysig yn y lle cyntaf ydy ei fod o’n ffordd o ddenu pobl ifanc i ddefnyddio’r Gymraeg, achos mae cymaint ohonyn nhw’n ymwneud â chlybiau chwaraeon ar draws Cymru. Eto, mae’r gwaith rydym ni wedi’i wneud yn y maes yma wedi deillio o drafodaethau rydym ni wedi’u cael efo clybiau chwaraeon, cymdeithasau chwaraeon, a Chwaraeon Cymru, hefyd. Mae’n bwysig nodi bod y cydweithio â nhw wedi bod yn allweddol i’r gwaith rydym ni wedi’i wneud.
O ran y modiwl ei hun, beth ydy o ydy ymdrech i annog hyfforddwyr i wneud mwy o ddefnydd o’r Gymraeg. Felly, mae o’n cynnwys cyfres o fideos, gemau rhyngweithiol a geiriau i’w defnyddio fel rhan o’r gwaith hyfforddi. Y neges ydy bod pawb yn gallu defnyddio’r Gymraeg, dim ots faint o sgiliau na pha mor hyderus ydyn nhw, mae yna eiriau, mae yna ymadroddion sy’n bosib eu defnyddio wrth hyfforddi. Yn aml iawn, mae sesiynau hyfforddi, boed ym mhêl-droed neu rygbi, yn cynnwys plant a phobl ifanc cymysg eu hiaith, felly mae jest defnyddio cymaint â phosib o Gymraeg yn bwysig.
Hyd yma, mae’r ymateb rydym ni wedi’i gael wedi bod yn gadarnhaol, felly, rydym ni wedi gallu gweithio efo Criced Cymru, Ymddiriedolaeth Cymdeithas Bêl-droed Cymru—maen nhw’n addasu’r modiwl ar gyfer eu hyfforddiant nhw. A, digwydd bod, yn y dyddiau diwethaf hefyd, rydym ni wedi cael cyfarfodydd addawol, adeiladol efo cymdeithasau chwaraeon eraill, fel Athletau Cymru, er enghraifft. Felly, ydy, mae o’n gweithio’n dda hyd yma ac mae’r cydweithio rhyngom ni a’r cymdeithasau’n bwysig o ran hynny.
I am interested in sport. I think the reason this is important in the first place is that it is a means of attracting young people to use the Welsh language, because so many of them are involved with sports clubs across Wales. Again, the work that we’ve done in this area has emerged from discussions that we’ve had with sports clubs, sporting associations, as well as Sport Wales. It’s important to note that the collaboration with them has been crucial to the work that we’ve done in this area.
In terms of the module itself, what it is an attempt to encourage coaches to make greater use of the Welsh language, it includes a series of videos, interactive games and vocabulary to be used as part of their coaching activities. The message is that everyone can use the Welsh language, it doesn’t matter what the level of their skills are or what their confidence is, there are certain words and phrases that can be used as part of coaching. Very often, coaching sessions, be they football or rugby, include children and young people who are mixed in terms of language. So, just using as much Welsh as possible is important in that scenario.
To date, the response has been very positive. We’ve been able to work with Cricket Wales, the Football Association Wales Trust—they are adapting the module for their coaching now. And, as it happens, over the past few days, we’ve had very promising, constructive meetings with other sporting associations, such as Welsh Athletics, for example. So, it’s worked well to date and the collaboration between ourselves and the associations is very important in that regard.
Mae’r rolio allan sydd wedi digwydd yn anhygoel, achos mae e wedi symud hefyd i hoci ac mae wedi symud i Nofio Cymru, â’r cymdeithasau yma’n dod atom ni a dweud, 'Iawn, rydym ni eisiau cymryd modiwl nawr a’i addasu fe i’n hanghenion ni.' Mae’n anhygoel.
The roll-out that’s happened has been amazing, because it’s moved to hockey and Swim Wales and these associations are coming to us and saying, 'We want to take that module now and adapt it to our needs.' It’s amazing.
Mick, jest cyn i ti symud ymlaen, mae Siân eisiau gofyn cwestiwn.
Mick, before you move on, Siân’s got a brief question.
Ie, roeddwn i jest yn meddwl, wnaethoch chi ddim sôn am y rygbi fanna, sydd yn un o’r prif chwaraeon yng Nghymru. A oes yna broblemau?
Yes, I was just thinking, you didn’t mention rugby there, which is a major sport in Wales. Are there any problems there?
Na, dim o gwbl. Rydym ni wedi cael trafodaethau adeiladol efo rygbi hefyd.
No, not at all. We’ve had some constructive discussions with rugby too.
Nid ydyn nhw’n trydar yn y Gymraeg yn aml iawn, Undeb Rygbi Cymru—y WRU, ond, mae hynny’n stori arall am ddydd arall, mae’n siŵr. Mick Antoniw.
They don’t tweet in Welsh very often, the Welsh Rugby Union, do they? But that’s another story for another day, I suppose. Mick Antoniw.
Mae yna gydweithio'n digwydd eto rhyngom ni a'r Llywodraeth—cydweithio ar sawl lefel, mewn gwirionedd. Rydym ni wedi cydweithio ar ddylanwadu ar sefydliadau mawr, busnesau mawr yng Nghymru. Mae yna raglen o gydweithio bellach hefyd â swyddogion Cymraeg byd busnes, sef y cynllun cymharol newydd sydd gan y Llywodraeth i weithio efo busnesau bach. Felly, mae'n bwysig, yn amlwg, fod yna ffiniau penodol a'n bod ni'n deall pwy sy'n gwneud beth. Y peth olaf rydym ni eisiau ei wneud ydy dyblygu. O ran Cymraeg byd busnes, maen nhw'n canolbwyntio ar fusnesau bychan. Mae'n gwaith ni, ein tîm hybu ni, yn dueddol o ganolbwyntio ar fusnesau mawr a chanolig, felly mae'r rhaniad gwaith yn eglur. Ac wedyn mae yna gydweithio da yn digwydd rhwng y swyddogion. Enghraifft o hynny: bu yna gydweithio yn yr Eisteddfod, er enghraifft, ar ddigwyddiadau ar y cyd. Rydym ni hefyd yn cydweithio o ran rhannu canllawiau arfer da, a hefyd o ran hyrwyddo cynllun iaith gwaith y comisiynydd. Felly, mae yna adnoddau fanna ac mae yna gydweithio o amgylch hynny. Wedyn, mae hynny'n allweddol, a buaswn i'n dweud bod y cydweithio yna wedi cynyddu yn sylweddol dros y misoedd diwethaf.
Collaboration does happen between us and the Government—collaboration on a number of levels, really. We have collaborated on influencing major organisations, major businesses in Wales. There is a programme of collaboration also with Welsh in business officials, a relatively new scheme that the Government has to work with small businesses. So, it's important, clearly, that there are specific boundaries, that we understand who does what. The last thing we want to do is duplicate. In terms of Welsh in business, they concentrate on small businesses, and our promotion team tends to concentrate on large and medium-sized businesses. So, the division of work is quite clear. There's good collaboration between the officials. An example of that: there was collaboration in the Eisteddfod, for example, with joint events. We also collaborate on sharing good practice guidance and also in terms of promoting the 'iaith gwaith' scheme of the commissioner, there are resources there and collaboration on that aspect. Then that is key, and I would say that that joint working has increased significantly over the last few months.
Ocê. Jest i orffen, Rhianon Passmore ar isadeiledd. Diolch.
Okay. Just to conclude, Rhianon Passmore on infrastructure. Thank you.
Thank you. Before I move on to infrastructure, could you just outline for me, in regard to your projected overspend for the future and almost halving of reserves, alongside those constraints around the public purse, that the area around Welsh language standards really has peaked at the moment, bearing in mind the current context around austerity and the public purse, or do you not feel that that is the case concerning your mandate?
Cwestiwn cymhleth. Rydw i'n credu bod ein gwaith ni'n mynd i barhau. Rydym ni wedi mynd trwy gyfnod—. Rydych chi'n sôn am uchafbwynt o ran gosod safonau. Mae'r gwaith wedyn o gynnal y gydymffurfiaeth yna yn mynd i barhau. Rydym ni nawr yn sôn am 122 o sefydliadau, so bydd yna 122 o sefydliadau rydym ni'n eu monitro; mae yna 122 o sefydliadau y byddwn ni'n gweithio gyda nhw o ran gwella eu gwasanaethau. Felly, mae cyllideb fflat yn mynd i beri inni orfod edrych ar gynnig y gwasanaethau statudol yna, ac mae'n rhaid i ni gofio eu bod nhw'n wasanaethau statudol rydym ni'n gorfod eu cyflawni. Ac, felly, mae'r gwaith yna'n mynd i barhau. Beth efallai welwn ni, a beth y buaswn i'n rhagweld, yw bod y gwaith sydd yn ymwneud â hybu a hwyluso, y gwaith sy'n ymwneud ag isadeiledd, geiriadura, enwau llefydd, yn mynd i orfod cael ei gyfyngu os bydd yna fwy o bwysau ar y gyllideb.
It's a complex question. I do think that our work will continue. We have gone through a high point in terms of setting standards, as you say. That compliance work will continue. We're now talking about 122 organisations and institutions that we will monitor; there will be 122 organisations that we will be working with in terms of improving their services. So, a flatlining budget will mean that we will have to look at providing those statutory services, and we must bear in mind that they are statutory services that we must deliver. And, therefore, that work will continue. What we may see, and what I would anticipate, perhaps, is that the work related to promotion, facilitation—the work related to infrastructure, vocabularies, glossaries, place names, will have to be limited or restricted if there is more pressure on our budget.
Which brings me nicely on to my next line of enquiry. So, in regard to service providers like Royal Mail, Ordinance Survey, you mentioned the database and the dictionary in terms of how much they impact on your core working. They're obviously good to do, nice to do, but in terms of your raison d'être for being there, do you see a lot more of that reaching out into different areas in the future, infrastructurally?
Pan ŷch chi'n edrych ar ein cyfrifoldebau statudol ni, hybu a hwyluso'r defnydd o'r Gymraeg, un o'r pethau sydd yn hybu ac yn hwyluso defnydd o'r Gymraeg—nid oes cwestiwn—yw'r gronfa enwau llefydd. Eto, rydw i wedi cael fy synnu gan hyn, ond mae'n hymwneud ni â chyrff fel yr Arolwg Ordnans, y comisiwn ffiniau, yn newid y naratif. Mae'n galluogi sefydliadau i feddwl yn ddwyieithog. Rydym ni'n gweithio ar hyn o bryd gyda'r cwmni trenau sydd wedi cael y franchise newydd. Maen nhw wedi cysylltu â ni i ofyn am gymorth i sicrhau bod enwau eu gorsafoedd nhw ac yn y blaen yn dderbyniol, yn safonol. So, felly, mae e'n waith sydd yn bywiogi iaith, ac os ŷch chi'n edrych ar y gwaith geiriadura a therminoleg, os ydym ni'n sôn am weithlu dwyieithog a gweithio'n ddwyieithog, yn arbennig mewn meysydd fel iechyd, gofal ac yn y blaen, mae'n bwysig cael terminoleg safonol. Felly, mae'r holl waith yna yn rhan o'r gwaith hybu a hwyluso, efallai nad yn amlwg, ond yn sicrhau bod yr iaith yn gyfoes, yn fodern ac yn gallu cael ei defnyddio mewn amryw o wahanol sefyllfaoedd.
When you look at our statutory responsibilities, promoting and facilitating the Welsh language, one of the things that do promote and facilitate the use of the Welsh language, no question, is the database of place names. Again, I've been surprised, but our work with the Ordnance Survey and the boundary commission changes the narrative, and it can enable organisations to think bilingually. We're working at the moment with the train operator that have won the new franchise, they've got in touch and asked us for support to ensure that the names of their stations and so forth are acceptable and are standardised. And it is work that brings life to a language. If you look at the dictionary, terminology and glossary work, if we're talking about a bilingual workforce and working bilingually, especially in areas such as care and health and so forth, it's important to have terminology that is standardised. All that work is part of the promotion and facilitation work. Perhaps it's not apparent, but it ensures that the language is current and modern and can be used in a number of different situations.
So, you see that equally as important as everything else. Okay, fine. Finally, my last question, really, will be around the other work that you're doing. Obviously, it's fantastic that you are chairing the international secretariat, and congratulations on doing that. In terms of its affordability, just a matter of clarity: do they pay for those services, or are you paying for them out of the budget?
Mae'r ysgrifenyddiaeth yn symud o gomisiynydd i gomisiynydd dros gyfnod o amser. Mi ddechreuodd hi'n Iwerddon. Wedyn, fe symudodd am gyfnod o ddwy flynedd atom ni. Mae hi wedi symud yn ôl i Iwerddon nawr. Mae Canada hefyd wedi cael yr ysgrifenyddiaeth ar rai adegau. Felly, mae'n waith rŷm ni'n ei amsugno i mewn i'r sefydliad. Nid yw'n anferth o bell ffordd.
The secretariat shifts from commissioner to commissioner over a period of time. It started in Ireland. It then moved for a period of two years to ourselves. It's now gone back to Ireland, and Canada has also held that secretariat role at certain points. So, it is work that we absorb as an organisation. It's not a huge cost.
But it's rotated. Okay, no worries. Diolch.
Grêt. Rydym ni'n dod at ddiwedd y sesiwn yna, ond byddwn ni'n symud ymlaen at y sesiwn ar yr adroddiad sicrwydd yn syth, os yw hynny'n iawn. Felly, diolch i Dyfan Sion am eich cyfraniad chi yma heddiw.
Rwy'n croesawu Gwenith Price, sef cyfarwyddwr strategol arall swyddfa'r comisiynydd. Hanner awr sydd gyda ni ar y sesiwn yma, felly rwy'n gofyn i Aelodau a'r rheini sy'n rhoi tystiolaeth i geisio ateb y cwestiynau yn weddol gryno. Symudwn ymlaen, felly, at eitem 2, a Jenny Rathbone ar y prif ganfyddiadau.
Great. We're now coming to the end of this session, but we'll move on to the session on the assurance report, if that's all right. So, thank you very much, Dyfan Sion, for your contribution.
We will welcome Gwenith Price, who is another strategic director in the commissioner's office. We have half an hour for this session, so I will ask Members and those who are providing us with evidence to try and answer the questions briefly. We move on, therefore, to item 2 and Jenny Rathbone on the main findings.
Diolch. Bore da. Just looking at the key findings of your report, there are two things that I'm interested in pursuing. One is shedding some light on why it is that people, or organisations, who are responding in Welsh don't provide the same amount of information—you know, additional information. Having made the effort to respond in Welsh, it seems to me very odd that they're not then doing the full response in Welsh.
A gaf i gyflwyno Gwenith, un o'r cyfarwyddwr strategol? Rydych chi wedi cwrdd â'r ddau ohonyn nhw'r bore yma. Rydych chi wedi cwrdd â'r tîm rheoli heddiw. Gwenith sydd yn gyfrifol am y gwaith cydymffurfiaeth.
Could I introduce Gwenith, who is one of the strategic directors? You will have met both of them this morning. You've met the management team, in fact. Gwenith is responsible for the compliance work.
Does dim angen i chi gyffwrdd â hynny mewn unrhyw ffordd. Diolch.
You don't need to touch the microphone, by the the way. Thank you.
Diolch yn fawr. Rydw i'n meddwl bod eich cwestiwn chi'n ymwneud â rhywbeth penodol iawn mewn—. Gwnaethom ni arolwg o ohebiaeth, a'r duedd ydy bod yna ganran o ohebiaeth yn cael ei hateb yn Gymraeg. Ond, os oes yna wybodaeth ychwanegol, mae hi'n llai tebyg o gael ei chynnwys efo llythyrau Cymraeg. Mae hynny'n rhywbeth sydd yn rhaid inni ei drafod efo sefydliadau lle'r ydym wedi dod ar ei draws o. Ond, rydw i'n meddwl, o bosibl—ac rydw i'n dyfalu—os ydyn nhw'n mynd drwy broses gyfieithu a rhannu'r ohebiaeth, efallai ei bod hi'n mynd allan a bod y deunyddiau atodol, fel mater o drefn, ddim yn cael eu cynnwys gan bawb. Ond, mae hynny'n un enghraifft, efallai, o bethau sydd ddim yn digwydd i'r un ansawdd wrth ddarparu gwasanaethau Cymraeg.
Thank you very much. I think your question relates to something very specific that—. We did a review of correspondence, and the tendency is that a percentage is answered in Welsh. But, if there is additional information, it's less likely to be included with Welsh correspondence, and that's something that we have to discuss with organisations where we have found that that's the case. But, I think possibly—and I'm guessing—if they're going through a translation process and sharing that correspondence, perhaps the auxiliary material isn't included by everyone as a matter of course. That's one example, perhaps, of things that don't happen to the same level in terms of the provision of Welsh language services.
All right, well, perhaps we won't pursue that, but it seems to me an anomaly that I don't quite understand. The other area, of course, is around policy decisions. As you rightly say, this isn't just about protecting the rights of Welsh speakers to be dealt with—for their enquiries to be dealt with in their language. It's about ensuring that the language of Welsh is a strategic part of our policy decision making. So, I wondered if you could just tell us a little bit more about this in relation to early years—the expansion of early years—because it seems to me that this is pretty strategic. When was your advice note on early years actually published?
Mis Tachwedd y llynedd.
November last year.
Okay, so, that's sort of 18 months after the policy decision that was announced by Welsh Labour to spread the free childcare offer to all three- and four-year-olds of working parents. So, I just wondered why there was that delay, given that this was such an important decision in relation to expanding the possibility of children learning in Welsh.
Mi oedd y penderfyniad i greu’r nodyn cyngor yna’n deillio o gyfres o gyfarfodydd y cawsom ni gyda gweision sifil a gyda gwleidyddion wrth fod y penderfyniad yna’n cael ei wneud. Fe wnaethom ni benderfynu bod angen i ni roi ar bapur beth oedd angen ei wneud nesaf, oherwydd bod y cyfarfodydd yna, rydw i’n credu, wedi codi cwestiynau yn ein meddyliau ni ynglŷn ag ansawdd y data a oedd ar gael; dealltwriaeth o’r angen o ran gofal plant a’r Gymraeg; a chonsýrn yn benodol ynglŷn â Flying Start a sut oedd cynllunio Flying Start yn delio â’r Gymraeg a dwyieithrwydd. Felly, fe wnaethom ni benderfynu—mi oedd yn 18 mis erbyn inni gyhoeddi—fod angen i ni wneud darn o waith penodol yn ceisio casglu’r data at ei gilydd a’i osod ar bapur a’i gyflwyno fe fel nodyn cyngor i’r Llywodraeth ac i’r pwyllgor ac i’r Gweinidog. Roeddem ni’n gweld y buasai’n colli cyfle i beidio â’i roi ar bapur. Felly, fe wnaethom ni benderfynu gwneud darn o waith yn sgil y cyhoeddi.
Felly, mi gafodd ef ei gyhoeddi gennym ni yn Nhachwedd y llynedd, 2017, ac, oddi ar hynny, mae wedi cael ei ystyried gan y pwyllgor plant, ac rydw i wedi cael cyfarfodydd gyda’r Gweinidog, Huw Irranca-Davies, ac mae’r drafodaeth yna’n parhau. Ond, y pwysigrwydd oedd adnabod y data a oedd ar gael ac wedyn adnabod y gwendidau.
The decision to create that guidance note stemmed from a series of meetings that we had with civil servants and with politicians, as that decision was being made. We decided that there was a need for us to put on paper what needed to be done next, because those meetings, I think, raised questions in our minds regarding the quality of the data available; the understanding of the demand in terms of childcare and the Welsh language; and concern specifically around Flying Start and how the planning of Flying Start dealt with the Welsh language and bilingualism. Therefore, we decided—it was 18 months by the time we published—that there was a need to do a specific piece of work trying to collect the data together and place it on paper and present it as a guidance note to the Government, to the committee and to the Minister. We saw that we would be missing an opportunity not to put it on paper. Therefore, we decided to undertake a piece of work as a result of the announcement.
It was published by us in November 2017, and since then, it has been considered by the children's committee, I've had meetings with the Minister, Huw Irranca-Davies, and that discussion is continuing. But, the importance was identifying the data that was available and then identifying the weaknesses.
Okay. So, how far do you think this advice note has now influenced the rolling out of this commitment? Because, clearly, we're a very long way from actually delivering childcare for everybody.
Rydw i'n credu bod ein consýrn ni, fel sefydliad, yn parhau, ond mae ein diddordeb ni hefyd yn parhau, achos mae hon yn sector sydd mor bwysig. Felly, rŷm ni’n cynnal y drafodaeth yna gyda’r pwyllgor a gyda’r Gweinidog. Fe wnaeth y Gweinidog a minnau sesiwn ar ddechrau’r haf ar y pwnc yma o dan adain y grŵp trawsbleidiol, felly rŷm ni’n dal i fod yn rhan o’r drafodaeth yna. Ond, fel rŷch chi’n ei ddweud, mae yna ffordd bell i fynd.
I think that our concern, as an institution, remains, but our interest also remains, because this is a sector that is so important. So, we are continuing that discussion with the committee and the Minister. The Minister and I had a session at the beginning of the summer as part of the cross-party group, and therefore, we are still participating in that debate. But, as you say, there is a long way to go.
Okay. So, do you think it has led to more Welsh speakers being targeted to increase their capacity to deliver the early years curriculum?
Rydw i mewn sefyllfa anodd i ateb y cwestiwn yna. Rydw i’n credu bod hynny’n gwestiwn teg i ofyn i’r Gweinidog a’r gweision sifil sy’n ymwneud â’r maes yma.
I'm in a difficult situation in answering that question. I think that is a fair question to ask, but it's perhaps a question for the Minister and the civil servants involved in this area.
Okay. Fair enough. Very good. So, just looking forward, what would you say your priorities are for the remainder of your term, based on the outcomes from the assurance report?
Cwestiwn da. Beth rŷm ni wedi gweld yn barod—ac mae’n adroddiad ni’n cyfeirio at hynny—yw cynnydd a gwella mewn gwasanaethau o ran y Gymraeg, a gwella o ran profiad i’r defnyddiwr. Beth sydd ddim wastad i’w weld yw cysondeb yn hynny. Rŷm ni’n gweld gwasanaethau’n cael eu darparu ar draws Cymru gan awdurdodau lleol a gan gyrff, ond nid ydyn nhw mor gyson yn y Gymraeg ag y buasem ni’n ei dymuno, ac nid ydyn nhw wastad o’r un ansawdd. Rŷch chi wedi cyfeirio at sefyllfaoedd lle, efallai, nad yw’r ohebiaeth yn cynnwys yr atodiadau angenrheidiol. So, mae yna waith i wella ansawdd—nid oes cwestiwn am hynny.
Beth mae hynny’n golygu yw bod angen i sefydliadau prif-ffrydio dwyieithrwydd yn eu gweinyddu o ddydd i ddydd. Ac mae’n rhaid inni gydnabod ein bod ni’n sôn am sefydliadau sydd yn gymhleth iawn. Os ŷch chi’n sôn am awdurdod lleol, mae’n sefydliad anhygoel o gymhleth. A beth sydd angen ei wneud yw cysoni’r cynllunio yna o ran dwyieithrwydd trwy’r sefydliad i gyd. Rydw i’n credu mai hynny yw’r pwysau ar y sefydliad a dyna yw’r pwysau arnom ni—i sicrhau bod hynny’n digwydd a bod ni’n eu hatgoffa nhw, trwy ein cyfarfodydd un-i-un gyda’r sefydliadau, trwy ein hyfforddiant a thrwy ein seminarau arferion da, fod angen iddyn nhw feddwl mewn ffordd wahanol. A chynnal y pwysau yna mewn ffordd sydd yn eu galluogi nhw i symud ymlaen yn hytrach na jest sicrhau cydymffurfiaeth. Beth yw'r geiriau hynny? 'Mewnoli', 'prif-ffrydio'. Dyna sydd angen ei wneud—ei fod e'n dod yn rhan o psyche y sefydliad i feddwl am ddwyieithrwydd, yn hytrach na meddwl, 'Reit, cynllunio gwasanaeth', a wedyn meddwl, 'O, mae'n rhaid i mi gyfieithu hwn nawr', ond meddwl yn ddwyieithog.
A good question. What we've already seen—and our report makes reference to this—is an increase and an improvement in services in relation to the Welsh language, and an improvement in customer experience too. What isn't always apparent is consistency in that regard. We see services being provided across Wales by local authorities and other organisations, but they aren't as consistent in their use of the Welsh language as we would want, and they don't always reach the same quality levels. You have mentioned circumstances where, perhaps, correspondence doesn't include the necessary annexes, for example. So, there is work to be done to improve quality—there's no doubt about that.
What that means is that organisations and institutions need to mainstream bilingualism in their day-to-day administration. And we have to recognise that we are talking about some very complex organisations. If you're talking about a local authority, it is hugely complex. And what we need to do is to standardise that planning in terms of bilingualism throughout the whole institution. I think that that is the pressure on the organisations and on us—to ensure that that does happen and that we remind them, through our one-to-one meetings with those organisations, through our training sessions and through our good practice seminars, that they need to think differently. And we need to maintain that pressure in a way that enables them to make progress, rather than simply securing compliance. What's the wording for that? Well, 'mainstreaming', 'internalisation'. That's what's needed so that it becomes part of the psyche of the organisation to think about bilingualism, rather than thinking, 'Right, plan a service', and then think, 'Oh, I have to get this translated now.' They need to think bilingually.
Okay. So, I know that Cardiff council has issued an advice note to all the organisations that they work with to indicate the standards they expect of them. Is that something that other local authorities are doing as well?
Mae'n rhaid i mi gydnabod bod cyngor Caerdydd yn esiampl dda o gynllunio pwrpasol, ond rŷm ni'n gweld yr un math o gynllunio yn digwydd ar draws Cymru. Fe ges i gyfarfod gyda Chyngor Sir Gâr yn gynharach wythnos yma, ac yn gweld yr un lefel o gynllunio; rŷm ni'n ei weld e mewn cynghorau eraill hefyd. Efallai nad yw'n deg, ond yn sicr rŷm ni'n gweld cynghorau yn y Cymoedd—cyngor Rhondda Cynon Taf—eto yn cynnig esiamplau o gynllunio pwrpasol. Ac un o'r pethau rŷm ni'n ei wneud ym mis Tachwedd yw cynnal diwrnod o ddathlu arferion llwyddiannus a rhannu arferion llwyddiannus. Rŷm ni ar hyn o bryd yn cynhyrchu fideos gyda'r sefydliadau yma i ddangos i eraill beth sy'n cael ei gyflawni.
I have to say that Cardiff council is a good example of meaningful planning, but we see the same kind of planning happening across Wales. I had a meeting with Carmarthenshire County Council earlier this week, and we saw the same level of planning there; we see it in other councils, too. Perhaps it's not fair, but we see some councils in the Valleys—Rhondda Cynon Taf council—providing examples of very meaningful planning. And one of the things that we will do in November is to stage a day where we celebrate successful practice and share successful practice. We're currently producing videos with these organisations to show others what is being delivered.
Mae'n rhaid i ni symud ymlaen, sori, Jenny. David Melding.
We will have to move on, sorry, Jenny. David Melding.
Diolch yn fawr, Cadeirydd. If I can deal briskly, then, with the next set of questions, so we can calibrate where we are. This relates directly to Welsh language services being received by people in contact with mostly public bodies. Telephone compliance is up quite a bit to 90 per cent. That is encouraging, presumably, although obviously it should be 100 per cent at some point soon. And you note the potential of technology to help to meet these standards. I just wonder how that interaction works. Will we only get to that standard if there's quite a lot of automation, or is that just part of the mix and that, in general, if you need a person at the end of the line to deal with your query, that's what should be the standard?
Diolch am y cwestiwn yna. Yn sicr, mae awtomeiddio wedi gwneud gwahaniaeth. Rydym ni wedi bod yn cwrdd efo pobl mewn grwpiau trafod. Maen nhw wedi dweud wrthym ni fod yn well ganddyn nhw wasanaethau ffôn wedi awtomeiddio a chael defnyddio'r Gymraeg na galw a methu defnyddio'r iaith. Felly, mae hynny yn sicr yn gweithio. Mae o'n gallu bod yn rhad, mae o'n hawdd i'w hyrwyddo, ac rydych chi'n gallu rhoi eich ffydd mewn system wedi ei awtomeiddio y cewch chi gynnig Cymraeg. Nid wyf yn meddwl ei fod o'n wastad yn rhywbeth i'w ddefnyddio fel trywydd; rydym yn dweud hynny yn yr adroddiad. Mae yna adegau, er enghraifft, pan rydych chi eisiau rhoi gwasanaeth wyneb-yn-wyneb. Gall hynny fod yn sensitif iawn mewn amgylchiadau llesiant. Felly, fyddem ni ddim yn argymell o anghenraid bod hynny'n ddull effeithiol, er bod gennym ni enghraifft yn yr adroddiad hefyd o rai byrddau iechyd a'r gwasanaeth ambiwlans yn defnyddio technoleg pan fydd pobl yn cael trafferth i fynegi eu hunain yn y Gymraeg a'r Saesneg.
Felly, yn sicr, mae o'n drywydd i fynd ar ei ôl ac mae pethau'n rhatach hefyd, o bosibl, drwy ddefnyddio dull technoleg gwybodaeth ac awtomeiddio. Ond fe fyddwn i yn dweud mai un diffyg rydym yn ei weld wrth fesur gwasanaethau ydy'r gwasanaethau wyneb-yn-wyneb a'r gwasanaethau llafar. Mae gennych chi siawns un mewn tri mewn derbynfa o allu defnyddio'r Gymraeg. Roeddech chi'n rhoi'r enghraifft o ffôn sydd bron yn 100 y cant, ond mae yna fwlch darparu yn fanna sydd yn her i sefydliadau fynd ar ei ôl.
Thank you for that question. Certainly, automation has made a difference. We've been meeting with people in focus groups, and they've told us that they prefer automated phone services where they're able to use the Welsh language, rather than having services where they're not able to use the Welsh language. So, that certainly works. It can be cheap, it's easily promoted, and you can put your faith in an automated system that you will get that Welsh language offer. I don't think it's always the correct route; we say that in our report. There are times, for example, when you want to provide that face-to-face service. That can be very sensitive in well-being cases, for example. So, we wouldn't necessarily recommend that that is an effective mechanism in all circumstances, but we do have an example in the report of some health boards and the ambulance service using technology when people are having difficulty in expressing themselves in Welsh and in English.
So, certainly, it is a route to be pursued and things may be cheaper in making use of ICT and automation. But I would say that one of the problems that we see in assessing service levels is those face-to-face services and those oral services. You have a one in three chance in reception of being able to use the Welsh language. You gave an example of telephone services where it's almost 100 per cent, but there is a provision gap there that is a challenge for organisations.
Okay. I was going to then come on to reception, but I think you have covered that and, obviously, that's a deeper issue to resolve because you're looking at appropriate staff and training, and—. But, of course, if you have a poor reception service, that's probably the gateway. If you had to choose one gateway that would say, 'This organisation is serious and welcoming', it probably is the reception, isn't it? So, are you disappointed that there's not a better model? You know, that that isn't realised, perhaps, by some of the organisations you're involved with.
Mae yna bethau mwy dwfn, fel rydych chi'n ei ddweud, o ran staffio. Mae efallai'n cymryd amser i recriwtio, wedyn rŷch chi eisiau eu hyfforddi nhw, rŷch chi eisiau bod â sicrwydd eu bod nhw'n hyderus i wneud y gwaith yn Gymraeg i'r un safon â’r Saesneg. Mae Bro Morgannwg wedi gwneud gwaith da yn uwch-sgilio staff y dderbynfa fel eu bod nhw’n gallu delio’n eang iawn efo gwasanaethau yn y Gymraeg a’r Saesneg. Felly, maen nhw wedi meddwl y tu allan i’r bocs, os liciwch chi, a meddwl sut y gallant newid gwasanaethau mwy cyffredinol i gryfhau beth maen nhw’n ei ddarparu yn y dderbynfa. Ond, rydw i yn meddwl hefyd fod yna ddiffygion amlwg yn y derbynfeydd o ran dim bathodyn, dim arwydd a rhai enghreifftiau o anghwrteisi, efallai, wedi dod i fyny o rai o’r arolygon rydym ni wedi eu gwneud. Mae hynny’n siomedig. Felly, rydw i’n meddwl bod angen codi ymwybyddiaeth, ac mae’r amser yn dechrau symud ymlaen, rŵan, lle rydych chi’n disgwyl gweld y staff wedi’u recriwtio ac yn dechrau ymddangos.
Fe wnes i edrych yn ôl dros bedair blynedd—rydym ni wedi bod yn gwneud yr adroddiadau yma ers pedair blynedd—ac rydych chi’n gweld bod y galwadau ffôn wedi cynyddu o rywbeth o dan chwarter yn 2014-15 i rŵan yn y 90 y cant a bron â chyrraedd 100 y cant. Ond, efo derbynfeydd, roedd o tua 37 y cant yn 2014-15 ac mi wnaeth o gynyddu ym mlwyddyn gyntaf y safonau. Roedd y gwaith gwirio y gwnaethom ni’n dangos 60 y cant, felly roeddem ni’n teimlo’n eithaf calonogol, ond mae o nôl rŵan, heb ei gynnal, i lawr i rywbeth fel 38 y cant o wasanaethau Cymraeg wyneb yn wyneb ar gael. Felly, mae yna rywbeth sydd ddim yn gweithio a bydd yn rhaid inni gael sgyrsiau, rydw i’n meddwl, efo sefydliadau, ynglŷn â hynny, a gofyn iddyn nhw gymryd mwy o berchnogaeth i weld beth sy’n digwydd a pham nad ydyn nhw’n gallu cynnal y gwasanaethau a pham nad oes cynnydd parhaus yn fanna.
Yes, there are more deep-seated issues, as you say, in terms of staffing. And it may take time to recruit and then you need to train those staff, you need to ensure that they're confident in delivering their work in Welsh to the same standard as they would do in English. The Vale of Glamorgan has done some good work in upskilling reception staff so that they can deal with a broad range of services in both English and Welsh. So, they've thought outside the box, if you like, and thought how they can change more general services to strengthen what they provide in their reception area. But, I also think that there are clear deficiencies in reception areas in terms of signage and badge wearing and some examples of discourtesy having arisen from some of the surveys that we've carried out and that's disappointing. So, I do think we need to raise awareness and time is now progressing where you would expect to see the staff having been recruited and that starting to have an impact.
I looked back over four years—we've been drawing up these reports for four years—and you see the number of phone enquiries having increased from something under a quarter in 2014-15 up to 90 per cent and almost up to the 100 per cent mark. But, with receptions, it was some 37 per cent in 2014-15 and it increased in the first year of standards. The work that we did showed 60 per cent, therefore we felt encouraged, but it's now back down to around 38 per cent of face-to-face services being available in Welsh. So, there is something missing somewhere, and we will have to have some conversations with organisations about that, and ask them to take greater ownership to see what is happening and why they are unable to maintain those services, and why there's been no ongoing progress in that area.
If I can return to the automation issue, or something very closely aligned, and that's the use of self-service machines. Again, the ones that are captured by standards, you say there's something like 100 per cent compliance, but there is sometimes an issue with the offer being there immediately and equally. I think we've all had experience of this, it comes up together and it's quite clear, or you go further into the process before you can access what is still a full Welsh service, but it's not there initially. So, that doesn't sound to me as if it's going to be very difficult to sort out, but are you encouraged that those organisations that need to ensure that that part of the process is fully compliant are now taking up that requirement?
Yn sicr, rydym ni wedi cael profiadau fan hyn lle rydym ni wedi cynnal ymchwiliadau gorfodi oherwydd cwynion rydym ni wedi eu derbyn. Efallai bod rhai awdurdodau heb sylweddoli beth oedd y disgwyliad. Mi fuodd yna un cwyn i’r tribiwnlys—nid aeth i achos—ac mi wnaeth y tribiwnlys ei hun sylwadau a oedd yn ei gwneud hi’n hollol amlwg bod disgwyl i’r Gymraeg ymddangos yn gyntaf ar y peiriannau hyn.
Yn gychwynnol, rydw i’n meddwl mai’r adwaith oedd pryder y buasai hyn yn gostus, ond wrth i rai awdurdodau mynd i’r afael efo’r broblem o newid peiriannau ac eistedd i lawr a dadansoddi, nid oedd o cweit mor ddrud neu sylweddol ag yr oedden nhw’n ei ofni. Mae’n dibynnu ar y peiriannau ac mae’n dibynnu beth ydyn nhw. Mae rhai yn dweud wrthym ni, 'Wel, rydym ni angen mwy o amser er mwyn newid y peiriannau.' Rydw i’n meddwl, o edrych ar yr amgylchiadau, mae’n rhaid inni fynd o achos i achos, a dweud y gwir.
Certainly, we've had experiences here where we have undertaken enforcement inquiries because of the complaints we've received. Perhaps some authorities hadn't realised what the expectation was. There was one complaint to the tribunal—it didn't go to a case—and the tribunal itself made comments that made it completely clear that there was an expectation that the Welsh language should appear first on these machines.
Initially, I think the reaction was concern that this would be costly, but as some authorities went to address this issue of changing machines and sitting down and analysing it, it wasn't quite as expensive or significant as they'd feared. It depends on the machines and on what they are. Some do tell us, 'We need more time to change the machines.' I think, in looking at the circumstances, we have to take it on a case-by-case basis.
I'm not following up, because I'm satisfied with the answers. There is an issue, then, in written inquiries, and you highlight an example of bad practice relating to two Welsh health boards that took an average 15 days to reply to a Welsh e-mail, which seems absolutely dilatory to the point of bemusement, frankly. Is that because—? Well, obviously, it's poor practice, but is it because the standards haven't come on stream fully yet and they weren't even preparing for those standards? I think most people would've expected them to be way above that sort of performance level. And can you name the health boards, please? Because I'm sure that they could well be—well, I'm sure that AMs here will be in those areas, so we can perhaps follow it up ourselves as well.
Nid ydym ni yn rhoi nac yn enwi cyrff yn ein hadroddiadau sicrwydd. Rydym ni wedi dilyn polisi o beidio â gwneud. Rydym ni yn mynd i weld y sefydliadau yma i drafod a rhoi adborth iddyn nhw, ond, yn amlwg, os ydych chi’n gofyn inni, ac yn teimlo eich bod chi am gael gwybod, gallwn ni anfon hynny atoch chi mewn llythyr. Nid yw’r enwau gen i o’m blaen i beth bynnag.
Roeddech chi’n gofyn am y gwahaniaeth rhwng cynllun iaith a safonau. Yn sicr, pan ydym ni’n gwneud gwaith gwirio gohebiaeth, nid oes yna lawer o wahaniaeth rhwng y Gymraeg a’r Saesneg fel norm, ond, yn y sector iechyd, rydym ni wedi gweld, dros gyfnod maith, fod delio â gohebiaeth, apwyntiadau ac yn y blaen yn broblem. Mae ymchwiliadau o dan Ddeddf 1993 wedi digwydd, ac rydym ni wedi gwneud arolwg i weld beth ydy’r problemau, ac maen nhw’n sôn am dechnoleg ac yn y blaen. Felly, maen nhw’n methu â chynhyrchu gohebiaeth yn Gymraeg.
We do not provide names or name them in our assurance reports. We've followed a policy of not doing so. We do go and see these institutions and discuss and provide them with feedback, but, clearly, if you are asking, and feel that you need to know, we could send you that in a letter. I don't have the names in front of me anyway.
You asked about the difference between a language scheme and standards. When we check correspondence, there is not much difference between the Welsh and English as a norm, but, in the health sector, we have seen, over a long period of time, that dealing with correspondence, appointments and so on is a problem. Investigations have happened under the 1993 Act, and we have undertaken a survey to see what the problems are, and they talk about technology and so forth. Therefore, they are failing to produce correspondence through the medium of Welsh.
There were a couple of other areas, but I think time is against us, Chair.
Diolch yn fawr iawn. Siân Gwenllian.
Thank you very much. Siân Gwenllian.
Mae’n ymddangos bod siaradwyr Cymraeg yn colli hyder bod gwasanaethau Cymraeg ar gael. Roedd 91 y cant yn dweud eu bod nhw yn gallu delio â sefydliadau cyhoeddus yn Gymraeg os oedden nhw eisiau gwneud hynny yn 2016-17, ond mae’r ffigur i lawr i 74 y cant eleni. Pam?
It appears that Welsh speakers are losing confidence that Welsh language services would be available—91 per cent stated that they were able to deal with public organisations in Welsh if they wished to do that in 2016-17, but that figure is down to 74 per cent this year. Why?
Cwestiwn da. Cwestiwn aruthrol o gymhleth i'w ateb.
Peth o’r rheswm yw rhywbeth yr ydw i wedi cyfeirio ato yn barod: diffyg cysondeb o ran darparu gwasanaethau—rhywun yn mynd i dderbynfa, ddim yn meddwl eu bod yn mynd i gael gwasanaeth Cymraeg, ddim yn cael gwasanaeth Cymraeg, colli ffydd, colli hyder. Mae hyn yn digwydd ar y ffôn hefyd. Ac rydym ni wedi gwneud gwaith cysgodi defnyddwyr defnyddiol iawn o’n rhan ni o ran deall proses defnyddiwr. Colli hyder, embarrassment, teimlo eu bod nhw’n bod yn lletchwith, ac wedyn, yr ail dro wedyn, efallai’n troi at y Saesneg yn hytrach na defnyddio’r Gymraeg. So, felly, mae hwn yn waith yr ŷm ni’n ei wneud gyda sefydliadau i godi eu hymwybyddiaeth nhw o bwysigrwydd y cysondeb yna, ond hefyd bwysigrwydd marchnata’r ffaith bod gwasanaethau ar gael pan fyddan nhw ar gael—y cynnig rhagweithiol. Nid yw sefydliadau’n gwneud y pethau syml, fel y lanyards, gosod allan ar ddesg bod y Gymraeg ar gael, ac felly rhywun yn meddwl, ‘W, dwi ddim yn siŵr a ydw i’n mynd i drial defnyddio’r Gymraeg fan hyn’. So, felly, cyfuniad o ansicrwydd, ambell i brofiad gwael, y gwasanaeth ddim yna pan oedd rhywun wirioneddol ei angen e, diffyg o ran sefydliadau o ran hyrwyddo. Ac rŷm ni’n trafod lot ar bethau fel nudge theory ac yn y blaen, ac yn trial deall sut mae rhywun yn cynyddu defnydd. Ac mae’n rhaid inni gofio hefyd hanes, sef nad yw gwasanaethau wedi bod ar gael, ac arfer pobl o gerdded i mewn i sefyllfaoedd swyddogol, gweinyddol a defnyddio’r Saesneg.
Good question. An exceptionally complex question to answer.
Partly, it’s down to something that I’ve already referred to: a lack of consistency in terms of service provision—someone entering a reception area, not thinking that they’re going to get a Welsh language service, not getting that service, and losing confidence. And this can happen over the phone, too. We’ve done some very useful shadowing work in terms of understanding the process gone through by service users. It’s a loss of confidence, its embarrassment, feeling they are being awkward, and then, on that second occasion, they will turn to English rather than seeking to use Welsh. So, this is work that we are doing with organisations in terms of raising awareness of the importance of consistency, but also the importance of marketing the fact that services are available where they are available. It’s the active offer. Organisations aren’t doing the simple things, such as the lanyards, putting a sign on the desk that a Welsh language service is available, and then people think, ‘Well, I’m not sure if I’ll try and use the Welsh language here’. So, it’s a combination of uncertainty, some poor experiences in the past, the service not being there when someone truly needed it, some problems in terms of promotion within organisations. And we discuss nudge theory a great deal, and trying to understand how one increases the use of the language. And we have to bear in mind, too, the history of all of this, where services haven’t been available, and people’s habits in walking into official scenarios, administrative scenarios, and turning to English.
Ond buasech chi'n meddwl y buasai pethau wedi gwella oherwydd bod yna lawer mwy o safonau rŵan ar y cyrff a bod mwy o gydymffurfio yn digwydd. Ac eto, mae’r canfyddiad yna nad ydy’r hawliau ddim ar gael. A ydy’n ymwneud â’r canfyddiad ynglŷn â gwasanaethau y tu allan i’r maes statudol?
But you would think that things would have improved, because there are many more standards now on the organisations and the fact that more compliance is happening. And yet there's that perception that rights aren’t available. Does it relate to the perception regarding services outside the statutory area?
Wel, rwy'n meddwl bod Gwenith wedi cyfeirio at rywbeth diddorol o ran derbynfeydd, sef efallai nad ydy'r gwasanaeth cystal y llynedd ag yr oedd y flwyddyn gynt, ac mae hynny wedyn yn dylanwadu ar brofiad y defnyddiwr. So, felly, rydw i'n credu bod yr elfennau yna ymhlyg yn ei gilydd hefyd.
I think Gwenith referred to something interesting in terms of reception areas. Perhaps the service wasn’t as good last year as it was the previous year, and that then has an influence on the user experience. I think all of those elements are implicit in all of this.
Ocê. Mae’n amlwg yn rhywbeth sydd angen sylw mawr, neu na fuasai ddim pwrpas—.
Okay. Clearly, it's something that needs great attention, or there's no purpose—.
Os edrychwch chi ar y ffigurau, pethau syml fel, fe wnaethom ni ddanfon allan 66,000 o lanyards ‘iaith gwaith’ y llynedd—mae yn swm syfrdanol—a degau o filoedd o’r rheini’n eistedd yn rhywle mewn desgiau, fuaswn i’n dweud, ac mae eisiau eu tynnu nhw allan a sicrhau eu bod nhw i gyd yn cael eu gwisgo. Pethau bach. Gallwn ni sôn am ein hymgyrch, fel ymgyrch sir Gâr yn codi ymwybyddiaeth defnyddwyr o fodolaeth eu gwasanaethau nhw—ymgyrch gyda siaradwyr Cymraeg, ond hefyd gyda pobl sy'n dysgu Cymraeg. Mae honno wedi cynyddu defnydd. Mae gyda nhw ffigurau bod yr ymgyrch yna wedi arwain at gynnydd defnydd, ond mae eisiau cynnal hynny. Mae gwaith y gallwn ni ei wneud, ac rydym ni'n eu hatgoffa nhw, ond mae yna waith i'r sefydliadau.
If you look at the figures, it is simple things, like the fact that we sent out 66,000 'iaith gwaith' lanyards last year—an astonishing number—and tens of thousands of them are sitting in desks somewhere, no doubt, and they need to be worn. It’s the little things. We could talk about our campaign, like the campaign in Carmarthenshire in terms of raising user awareness of the existence of their services—a campaign with Welsh speakers, but also with Welsh learners. That has increased usage. They have figures that show that that campaign has lead to an increase in the use of the Welsh language, but you need to maintain that. There's work that we can do, and we remind them, of course, but there's work for the organisations themselves too.
Rydw i'n gwybod eich bod chi wedi dyfynnu un ffigur lle mae yna ostyngiad wedi bod ers llynedd, ond mae yna nifer o ystadegau, rwy'n meddwl, ac mae ein profiad ni o'r grwpiau trafod a rhai ystadegau eraill o ran arolygon barn, sy'n dangos bod pobl yn teimlo bod yna welliant. Y broblem yw, rydw i'n meddwl, cynnal y gwelliant yna a chysoni. Pe buaswn i'n gorfod crynhoi'r profiad, fuaswn i'n dweud bod gwasanaethau yn well ac maen nhw ar gael, ond nid ydyn nhw ar gael bob amser. Felly, dyna'r her—cael y cysondeb yna a'r sicrwydd.
I know you've quoted one figure where there's been a reduction since last year, but there are a number of statistics, I think, and our experience of the discussion groups, other statistics from surveys, show that people feel there's been an improvement. The problem is, I think, maintaining that progress and standardising. If I had to summarise the experience, I would say that services are better and are available, but they're not available all the time. That is the challenge—to ensure that consistency and certainty.
Efallai mae ein disgwyliadau ni yn cynyddu hefyd. Mae hynny’n ran ohono rydw i'n siŵr. O ran y safonau llunio polisi, rydych chi'n reit feirniadol nad ydy sefydliadu’n deall beth mae hynny'n ei olygu mewn gwirionedd. Felly, beth fedrwch chi wneud am hynny?
It may be that our expectations are increasing as well. I think that's certain to be part of it. In terms of policy-making standards, you're quite critical that organisations don't necessarily understand what that means. So, what can you do about that?
Yn sicr, rydw i'n meddwl nad ydyn nhw wedi eistedd lawr a dadansoddi’n union beth mae'r safonau llunio polisi yn ei olygu yng nghyd-destun y Gymraeg. Maen nhw'n ymwneud â chynyddu cyfleon i ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg ac asesu a gwneud asesiad i weld a oes mwy o gyfleon neu a allwn ni beidio â chyfyngu. Mae o'n ymwneud hefyd, wrth gwrs, â gwell triniaeth i ddefnyddwyr y Gymraeg. Ond y patrwm yw gosod y geiriau 'iaith Gymraeg' fel rhan o asesiad effaith cydraddoldeb a'i ystyried fel nodwedd person a chamwahaniaethu. Felly, os yw'r safonau—ac maen nhw'n rhai hyrwyddol—yn ymwneud â chynyddu defnydd a chynyddu cyfleon, nid ydyn nhw'n gwneud yr asesiad drwy ddefnyddio'r fethodoleg gywir, ac efallai hefyd nid oes monitro. Mae hyn yn drueni achos mae hyn yn rhoi potensial i gorff edrych ar bethau yn y cyfnod ffurfiannol reit ar y cychwyn a gwreiddio’r Gymraeg i mewn i rywbeth maen nhw'n penderfynu gwneud o'r newydd. So, mae'n gallu bod yn arbediad ariannol i'w wneud yn iawn ar y pwynt cychwynnol yna.
Rydym ni yn mynd i gynnal gweithdai. Mae gennym ni ryw dri neu bedwar wedi'u trefnu a chryn dipyn o swyddogion cyrff cyhoeddus yn dod i'r rheini ac fe fyddwn ni'n treulio diwrnod yn mynd drwy'r safonau yma. Mae yna enghreifftiau da ar gael, felly rydym ni'n mynd i fod yn defnyddio'r rheini. Rydym ni'n mynd i roi cyngor a chael trafodaeth. Felly, gobeithio y gwnaiff hynny sbarduno tipyn o ailfeddwl a mwy o waith. Ond mi wnaethom ni'r gwaith yma yn 2014-15 ac nid yw pethau wedi newid ryw lawer, felly mae angen chwistrelliad o egni i mewn i'r safonau yma, rydw i'n meddwl.
Certainly, I think they haven't sat down and analysed exactly what the policy-making standards entail in the context of the Welsh language. They are about increasing opportunities to use the Welsh language and to assess and make assessments to see whether there are more opportunities or can we not restrict. It does also relate, of course, to better treatment for Welsh language users. But the pattern is setting the words 'Welsh language' in the equality impact assessments and considering it as a personal characteristic and discrimination. So, if the standards—and they are promotional ones—are around increasing use and increasing opportunities, they don't do the assessment using the correct methodology, and perhaps there is no monitoring. This is a pity because this offers the potential for an organisation to look at things at that initial stage and root the Welsh language into something they're deciding to do from the start. So, it can be a financial saving to do it correctly at that initial stage.
We are going to hold workshops. We have about three or four already arranged and quite a number of officials from public bodies are coming to those and we'll spend a day going through those standards. There are good examples, and we're going to use those. We're going to provide advice and have a discussion. So, hopefully, that will inspire a little bit more thinking and more work. But we undertook this work in 2014-15 and things haven't changed much, so there is a need to bring an injection of energy into the standards, I think.
Iawn. A ydy hyn yn wir ynglŷn â gwaith y Llywodraeth hefyd?
Okay. Is this the case with the Government's work too?
Nid oes gen i fanylion am bob corff efo fi heddiw. Rydym ni’n mynd i weld tua 50 o sefydliadau i drafod efo nhw. Rydw i'n credu bod y Llywodraeth wedi gwneud gwaith eithaf da o ran datblygu methodoleg, os rydw i'n cofio'r cyfarfodydd rwyf wedi cael efo nhw llynedd a'r flwyddyn gynt.
I haven't got the details of every organisation with me today. We're going to have discussions with around 50 organisations. I think the Government has done some quite good work in terms of developing the methodology, from memory of the meetings I had with them last year and the previous year.
Ond nid yw'r enghraifft gofal plant, er enghraifft, i'w weld yn arwydd bod yr—.
But the childcare example, for example, doesn't seem to suggest that those improvements have been made.
Wel, allaf i ddim drafod pethau penodol efo chi heddiw mae gen i ofn, ond rydw i'n gwybod bod y fethodoleg wedi cael ei datblygu ar y seiliau cywir yn y Llywodraeth—efallai nad ydyn nhw mewn llefydd eraill—ac mae rhannu hynny yn rhywbeth rydym ni'n awyddus iawn i'w wneud.
Well, I can't discuss specifics with you today, I'm afraid, but I do know that the methodology has been developed on the right foundations within Government—perhaps that isn't the case elsewhere—and sharing that is something we're very eager to do.
Rwy'n jest yn mynd i fynd i gwestiynau Jane Hutt yn glou ar y broses cwyno, gan fy mod i'n ymwybodol bod Jane yn gorfod mynd, a wedyn nôl i gwestiynau Mick Antoniw. Diolch.
I'm just going to go to Jane Hutt's questions quickly on the complaints process, because I'm aware that Jane has to go, and then I'll come back to Mick Antoniw's questions. Thank you.
Diolch yn fawr. It's very clear that if you have a robust complaints procedure it can actually improve service delivery, but it's quite disappointing to see in your report that only 37 per cent have published a complaints procedure.
Fe wnaethom ni edrych ar 78 o sefydliadau ac mae'r safon yn gofyn i bobl gael rhyw fath o weithdrefn gwyno ar gyfer y Gymraeg a safonau'r Gymraeg a'u cyhoeddi ar eu gwefan, neu, yn achos staff, achos mae yna safonau gweithredu, ar eu mewnrwyd. Rydych chi'n iawn i ddweud bod y ganran yn isel. Hefyd, yn yr arolwg barn, 32 y cant o ddefnyddwyr oedd yn gwybod sut i gwyno wrth sefydliad. Felly, mae'n amlwg bod yna broblem ar lefel leol. Roedd rhai enghreifftiau lle nad oedden nhw, yn amlwg, wedi edrych ar weithdrefn o gwbl ers dod o dan y safonau. Roedden nhw'n cyfeirio at gorff sydd wedi'i ddiddymu erbyn hyn, y bwrdd iaith, yn cyfeirio pobl atyn nhw, sy'n siomedig iawn, i weld nad ydyn nhw wedi ystyried—. Neu roedd rhai achosion lle oedd y weithdrefn yn cyfeirio pobl yn uniongyrchol at y comisiynydd, ac nid oedd ymgais i ddelio â'r cwynion eu hunain yn lleol. Felly, yn sicr, mae hynny'n rhywbeth rydym ni am i sefydliadau ei berchnogi a gwneud rhywbeth amdano, achos, yn amlwg, mae eisiau meithrin ffydd, pan fo pethau ddim yn gweithio'n iawn, bod sefydliad yn mynd i ymateb a delio â nhw.
We looked at 78 organisations and the standard requires them to have some sort of a complaints procedure for the Welsh language and the Welsh language standards and publish them on their website, or, in the case of staff, because there are operational standards, on their intranet. You're right to say that the percentage is low. Also, in the survey, only 32 per cent of users knew how to complain to an organisation. So, it's clear that there is a problem on a local level. There were some examples where they clearly hadn't looked at procedures since coming under the system of standards. They were referring to a body that has been abolished now, the language board, referring people to them, which is very disappointing, to see that they hadn't considered—. Or, in some cases, the procedure referred people directly to the commissioner, and there was no effort to deal with the complaints themselves on a local level. So, certainly, that is something that we want organisations to take ownership of and do something about, because, clearly, there is a need to nurture faith and confidence, that, when things aren't working right, an organisation is going to respond and deal with that.
What about the differences between the ways in which organisations respond to standards investigations compared with the Welsh language scheme route?
Mae yna wahaniaeth. O fod yn ymchwilio i bethau o dan y Ddeddf iaith cyn i safonau ddod i mewn, nid oedd yna wastad sicrwydd y byddai corff yn ymateb o gwbl i gwynion am y Gymraeg. Ond rŵan, mae dyletswydd arnyn nhw i ymateb, i roi tystiolaeth, ac maen nhw yn ei wneud. Ac mae'n rhaid dweud, yn aml iawn hefyd, maen nhw'n dod i fyny efo cynigion a datrysiadau. So, mae yna newid diwylliant wedi bod.
Roedd o'n eithaf poenus ar y dechrau—nid wyf yn meddwl bod unrhyw un yn licio corff yn ymchwilio o'r tu allan—ond mae o wedi newid; rydw i'n meddwl bod sefydliadau yn ymateb yn well. Ac, wrth gwrs, mae wedi grymuso sefyllfa'r unigolyn. Iawn, maen nhw'n cwyno wrthym ni'n uniongyrchol yn hytrach na'r sefydliad, ond mae'r unigolyn mewn sefyllfa fwy grymus pan fo pethau ddim yn digwydd yn iawn yn y Gymraeg, ac mae hynny, rydw i'n meddwl, yn beth da.
Y peth arall, rydw i'n meddwl, i'w nodi ydy bod y safonau'n ehangach—gwasanaethau'n unig o dan drefn 1993, ond mae safonau'n ymwneud â gweinyddu mewnol, safonau llunio polisi, hyrwyddo. Felly, mae rhywun yn gallu rhoi cwyn ynglŷn â nad oes cyfleon ehangach i ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg. Felly, mae gafael y broses orfodi yn ehangach.
Ac rydw i'n credu hefyd—. Nid yw gorfodi yn cael ei weld fel peth cadarnhaol, ond rydym ni'n ceisio ei ddefnyddio fo yn yr ysbryd yna, ac mae o'n gwneud gwahaniaeth. Mi wnaethom ni ymchwiliad i wersi nofio—diffyg gwersi nofio—ac rydych chi'n gweld bod cyrff wedi ymateb ac wedi hyfforddi hyfforddwyr, a, pan ydym ni’n edrych ar y traweffaith, bod yna ddosbarthiadau nofio cyfrwng Cymraeg. Ac, mewn un canolfan, mae 18 wedi cymryd i fyny'r cyfle i ddefnyddio'r gwasanaeth yna drwy'r Gymraeg. Felly, rydym ni yn dechrau gweld bod hynny'n gadarnhaol o ran ei draweffaith.
There is a difference. Having looked at what was captured under the Welsh language Act before standards, there wasn't always certainty that a body would respond at all to complaints about the Welsh language. But now they are duty bound to respond and to provide evidence, and they do do that. And I have to say that, very often, they do come up with proposals and solutions. So, there's been a culture change.
It was quite painful at the outset—I don't think anybody likes to have an external organisation looking at their procedures—but it has changed; I think organisations do respond more positively. And it has empowered the position of the individual. Yes, they may complain directly to us rather than to the institution involved, but the individual is empowered when things aren't happening as they should through the medium of Welsh, and I think that's positive.
The other thing to note is that the standards are broader. It was services only that were captured under the 1993 Act, but the standards relate to internal administration, policy-making standards, promotion. So, one can make a complaint about the absence of wider opportunities to use the Welsh language. So, the reach of the enforcement the process is broader.
Enforcement isn't seen as something positive but we do try to use it in a positive sense, and it makes a difference. We looked into swimming lessons—and the absence of Welsh language swimming lessons—and you do see that organisations have responded, they trained their coaches. And, when you look at the impact, there are Welsh language swimming classes available now. And, in one centre, 18 had taken up that opportunity to use that service through the medium of Welsh. So, we are starting to see that that is having a positive impact in term of its effect.
Jest i orffen wedyn—
Just to finish then—
Diolch yn fawr iawn, Jane. Jest i orffen wedyn, cwestiynau ar newid ymddygiad pobl. Felly, Mick Antoniw.
Thank you very much, Jane. Just to finish then, questions on behavioural change. Mick Antoniw, therefore.
Chair, I think most of the issues on trust and behavioural change have actually been answered. So, there's only really one point, additionally, that I'd like to ask, and that is, obviously, the engagement internationally with the other language commissioners. This is, undoubtedly, a common feature with all languages that are under pressure and so on. What have you learned from other counties in terms of how they deal with this issue of how you actually get people to speak a language, but to actually engage and to use it and have the confidence to use it?
Ydy, mae'n broblem gydag ieithoedd lleiafrifol ar draws y byd. Mae'n rhywbeth sy'n nodweddu ieithoedd lleiafrifol ym mhob man. Un peth difyr a diddorol rŷm ni wedi'i weld yn digwydd, ac mae hyn wedi digwydd yng Nghanada yn ystod yn ystod y misoedd diwethaf, oedd cydnabyddiaeth o fewn y sector iechyd a gofal cymdeithasol bod pobl yn teimlo'n anghyffyrddus neu'n embarrassed i ddefnyddio iaith frodorol wrth ddefnyddio gwasanaethau, a gweld nad rhoi pwyslais ar y defnyddiwr oedd ei angen, ond rhoi pwysau ar y sefydliad—y cynnig rhagweithiol.
Ac mae yna lot o drafod wedi bod yng Nghanada am y cynnig rhagweithiol. Ond beth maen nhw wedi'i wneud yw cymryd hynny gam ymhellach a rhoi cyfarwyddiadau statudol nawr ar bobl broffesiynol yn y maes iechyd a gofal cymdeithasol yng Nghanada ar sut i gyfathrebu gyda defnyddwyr mewn iaith leiafrifol. Ac mae hynny wedi gwneud dau beth, sef cymryd y pwysau oddi ar y defnyddiwr a gosod pwysau statudol ar y person proffesiynol. Mae hynny'n rhan o'u cymhwyso nhw fel pobl broffesiynol yn y meysydd yma, yn iechyd a gofal. Mae hynny, rydw i'n credu, yn gam aruthrol o bositif ymlaen, o ran cymryd y pwysau i ffwrdd ond hefyd ei wneud e'n ddyletswydd broffesiynol ar unigolyn sy'n gweithio yn y maes iechyd a gofal i fod yn gallu cyfathrebu ac yn gwybod sut i gyfathrebu â phobl sydd, efallai, yn ansicr. So, mae hynny'n rhywbeth, pe bawn i'n aros yn y sedd yma, y buaswn i'n sicr â diddordeb mawr mewn edrych arno: sut mae gweu hynny i mewn i gymhwyso proffesiynol mewn gwahanol feysydd yng Nghymru a'i osod e ar lefel statudol. Mae Canada wedi'i wneud e nawr, ac mae wedi ei symud o fod yn ddrafft i fod yn statudol yn ystod y tair wythnos diwethaf yma. So, felly, mae hynny wedi bod yn agoriad llygad. Mae hynny, rydw i'n credu—ei symud e o'r unigolyn i'r sefydliad, ond hefyd y gydnabyddiaeth statudol o anghenion maes proffesiynol—mor bwysig.
Yes, it is a problem with minority languages across the world. It's something that is a feature of minority languages everywhere. One interesting thing that we've seen happening, and this has happened in Canada during in last few months, was an acknowledgement within the health and social care sector that people felt uncomfortable or embarrassed to use an indigenous language in using services, and seeing that it was not placing an emphasis on the user that was needed, but placing pressure on the organisation—the proactive offer.
And a lot of discussion has been ongoing in Canada about the proactive offer. But what they've done is take that a further step and provide statutory instructions now for professionals in the health and social care sector in Canada on how to communicate with users in a minority language. And that has done two things: namely, it's taken the pressure off the user and placed statutory pressure on the professional. That is part of their qualifications in these professional fields of health and social care. That, I think, is an extremely positive step forward, in taking pressure away but also making it a professional duty on an individual that works in the health and social care field to be able to communicate and know how to communicate with people who, perhaps, are unsure. So, that is something, if I were to remain in this post, I would certainly have great interest in looking at: how to weave that into professional qualifications in various areas in Wales and placing it on a statutory basis. Canada has done so now, and has moved it from being in draft to statutory during these last three weeks. So, therefore, that has been an eye-opener. That, I think—moving it from the individual to the organisation, but also the statutory recognition of the needs in the professional area—is all-important.
Effectively, linguistically changing the default position instead of reversing it seems to be the key, doesn't it?
A dyna yw e—yn hytrach na bod Gwenith neu finnau'n cerdded lan i ddesg ac yn meddwl, 'Beth sy'n mynd i ddigwydd?', mae'n rhoi y cyfrifoldeb ar y person proffesiynol y tu ôl i'r ddesg i gynnig gwasanaeth dwyieithog yn broffesiynol ac yn rhagweithiol.
And that's what it is, of course. Rather than if Gwenith and I were to approach a desk and think, 'What's going to happen?, it's placing the responsibility on the professional behind the desk to provide bilingual services and to do that professionally and proactively.
Grêt. Rydym ni wedi dod i ddiwedd y sesiwn, ac, yn amlwg, rydw i'n credu mai'r sesiwn olaf. Nid ydw i'n siŵr os byddwch chi'n dod yn ôl rhywbryd cyn ichi orffen, ond os ddim, diolch yn fawr iawn ichi am fod yn gydweithredol gyda'r pwyllgor ar hyd y blynyddoedd, a phob lwc ichi yn y dyfodol. A diolch yn fawr iawn am ddod mewn pan ydym ni wedi gofyn ichi ddod mewn fel pwyllgor. Diolch yn fawr iawn am y sesiwn yma heddiw, ac rydw i'n siŵr y byddwn ni'n cysylltu os oes rhai cwestiynau yng nghwestiynau David Melding nad oedd wedi cael eu hateb, fe wnawn ni ysgrifennu atoch chi, os yw hynny'n iawn. Roedd yna gwestiynau am apiau ac yn y blaen nad oeddem ni wedi gallu eu gofyn. Felly, diolch yn fawr iawn.
Great. We've come to the end of our session, and, clearly, I think this is the last session. I'm not sure whether you're coming back sometime before you finish. If not, thank you very much for co-operating with the committee over the years, good luck in the future. And thank you very much for attending when we have requested it as a committee. Thank you very much for this session today, and I'm sure that we will get in touch if there are some questions, such as those in David Melding's questions, that weren't answered, if that's okay. There were questions about apps and so forth that we weren't able to ask you about. So, thank you very much.
Diolch yn fawr i chi. Nid ydw i'n cynllunio ymddangos o'ch blaen chi eto—[Chwerthin.]—felly a gaf i ddiolch i chi am eich diddordeb? Ac a gaf i hefyd nodi, pan ddechreuais i fel comisiynydd, rydw i'n credu mai'r pwyllgor llywodraeth leol oedd yn achlysurol yn edrych ar faterion y Gymraeg? Mae wedi gwneud byd o wahaniaeth i gael pwyllgor lle mae'r Gymraeg o fewn teitl y pwyllgor, ac rydych chi yn cymryd diddordeb. Mae e yn gwneud gwahaniaeth. Diolch yn fawr iawn, iawn i chi.
Thank you very much. I don't plan on appearing before you again—[Laughter.]—therefore may I thank you for your interest? May I also note that when I started as commissioner, I think it was the local government committee that occasionally would look at issues relating to the Welsh language? It has made a world of difference to have a committee where the Welsh language is in the title of the committee, and you do take an interest. It does make a difference. Thank you very, very much.
Grêt, diolch yn fawr iawn.
Fe wnawn ni gymryd seibiant o bum munud a dod yn ôl. Diolch.
Great, thank you very much.
We'll take a break of five minutes and return. Thank you.
Gohiriwyd y cyfarfod rhwng 11:02 a 11:10.
The meeting adjourned between 11:02 and 11:10.
Diolch, a chroeso i eitem 3 ar yr agenda yma heddiw: gwaith craffu blynyddol ar Gyngor Celfyddydau Cymru. Croeso i Nick Capaldi, prif weithredwr Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru, ac i Gwyn Williams, cyfarwyddwr cyllid a gwasanaethau busnes. Croeso atom.
Fel sydd yn arfer, mae gyda ni gwestiynau gan Aelodau ar sail themâu gwahanol. Felly, os yw’n iawn gyda chi, awn ni’n syth i mewn i gwestiynau.
Roeddwn i jest eisiau gofyn cwestiwn clou i gychwyn. Mae’n amlwg ein bod ni wedi cael corporate plan y cyngor celfyddydau, ond rydym ni’n disgwyl bod yna gynllun gweithredol hefyd. Roedd y cynllun gweithredol diwethaf allan yn 2017. A allwch chi ddweud wrthym ni pryd y bydd y cynllun gweithredol yn dod mas i gyd-fynd â’r cynllun mwy eang, strategol yn hynny o beth? Diolch.
Thank you, and welcome to item 3 on the agenda here today: the annual scrutiny of the Arts Council of Wales. Welcome to Nick Capaldi, chief executive of the Arts Council of Wales, and to Gwyn Williams, director of finance and business services. Welcome.
As usual, we have questions from Members on various themes. So, if it's okay with you, we will go straight into questions.
I just wanted to ask a quick question to begin with. It's clear that we've had the arts council's corporate plan, but we are expecting an action plan as well. The last one was out in 2017. Can you tell us when the action plan will come out to correspond with the wider strategic plan in that sense? Thank you.
Certainly, yes. We produce an operational plan that sets out in some detail what we're doing each year at the start of each year, and our operational plan for 2018-19, the current year, does exist. You probably tried to find it on our website, and if for any reason it's not there, I apologise, and we will put that right.
We'll contact you after this meeting, then, to get that.
Okay. Rhianon Passmore.
Thank you, Chair. Welcome. With regard to the overall increases to the revenue budget for the Welsh arts council, but the underlying and pertinent context of falling lottery levels, the deficit in local authority funding due to the need to protect front-line direct services, do you feel that your mandate at the moment is stretched, and what do you think is going to fall off the cliff edge?
Yes, a very succinct analysis. We are stretched, there's no doubt about that. And I think that we are seeing the consequences of this in two ways: firstly, to the arts organisations and the activities that we fund, but, secondly, on us as an organisation as well. Just to put this into context, 10 or more years ago, we were in an environment where Welsh Government funding was increasing year on year, and that was terrific, when lottery funding was very buoyant. Now, where we are today, our combined levels of grant in aid and lottery funding, if adjusted for the retail prices index, is actually slightly less than 20 years ago. So, I think the drift and the drag of that has had a significant impact. It has meant fewer attendances—attendances are down slightly this year on the year before, as is participation in terms of our key organisations, and we've been able to fund fewer applications for funding through our schemes. So, it is a problem. We've tried to make sure—and this is a policy of the council—that as much money as possible goes to direct, front-line activity. So, we've been looking at our own costs and resources and, over two reviews of our organisation over the last five years or so, we've reduced our staffing numbers by around 25 per cent, and that is beginning to tell in terms of the strain on my very dedicated and committed staff.
And I think that's acknowledged widely in terms of the workforce. However, in terms of the increasing mandate, the very difficult climate, in particular the music education world at this moment in time, around the wider context of funding the arts portfolio, and everybody is trying to maximise every penny of their buck at the moment, do you feel that all strategies are being explored with Welsh local government in terms of their contribution from the Welsh arts council? And, really, do you see it as your job, or do you see it as Welsh Government's job, to be able to perhaps refocus and recalibrate and actually fully fund the organisations that you are currently working with?
Well, clearly, the principal levers of control are in the Welsh Government's hands, and we do rely on them very much to set the strategic context within which funding to the arts from local authorities comes. It is a discretionary area of local authority funding for the most part, but even when there are mandatory services around education, as you know only too well, that doesn't mean to say that these areas are protected. There have been big losses in local authority funding for the arts. If you take our portfolio of revenue-funded organisations, for example, over the last five years, funding to that portfolio has halved. It used to be £10 million, it's now £5 million, and I suspect there's only one direction that that funding is going in.
So, in order to try and mitigate the effects of this, we are obviously involved in the day-to-day campaigning and relationship building that one would expect around particular projects and organisations. But we're also trying to use the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015, which I think is the arts' friend in this context, to work with local authorities to demonstrate how the arts can illuminate and support a whole range of civic priorities and strategies.
We are actually finding that, whilst we're losing funds through the traditional grant-giving areas, we are finding opportunities around cultural tourism, around town-centre regeneration, around arts and health. And I think the 22 local authorities and the public services boards, if anything, have been more active in coming to us for advice and support.
So, in regard to perhaps the new compact with local government, you've found another vehicle to be able to do that. Do you feel that the days of local authority funding—their contribution to the arts—are over?
No, but I think that, increasingly, we will have to find new and different ways of working in partnership with local authorities. Local authorities still, either through their planning responsibilities or the broader opportunities that they have for certain tax-varying powers, do have levers that they can use, and I think that, if we move beyond the traditional grant-giving model and start looking in partnership at how we can work with local authorities, I think funds will be there.
Okay. I suppose a little question around the difference that your new corporate plan is going to make, but in a sense the same sort of question applies to you: we are in a different landscape due to imposed austerity on Wales, and that's a political choice. We have to obviously work within that financial envelope, as you do. So, do you feel that the model of working for the Welsh arts council is now ripe for change, or do you feel that your current model of working is fit for purpose for this new age of very, very constrained budgets?
No, I don't think that the model that we have at the moment and the way we work is the one that will serve us best going forward. Within the corporate plan, we talk about a third priority, perhaps call it an enabling action, where we are going to have to work far more closely with a range of different partners on the ground to work collaboratively. Now, again, that ties in very neatly with the well-being of future generations and the five ways of working, and I think that we can't do everything ourselves—clearly, we can't. So, if we are to maintain a footprint across the country as a whole, we're going to have to work with a whole range of individuals, organisations, local authorities, funded organisations, to make sure that nobody within Wales who wants advice and information about what the arts council can do is denied that opportunity.
And do you feel, therefore—and I'm sure you'll give me an affirmative answer—because of the landscape that you are now in and the responsibilities attached to that, and a lot of demand out there from different portfolios within the arts world in Wales, and all of them very important, especially the anti-poverty agenda—do you feel that your corporate plan is then innovative enough and ambitious enough to be able to take on all of these competing demands?
I think it marks a significant change. We've been talking about all of these issues for a number of years, and I think that council—it was something of a watershed moment about a year ago when it looked at the actual results and went back over a period of time, and the clear conclusion was that we weren't doing enough. So, I can absolutely assure you that my council is determined to change this over the five years of the plan. Its subtitle, 'For the benefit of all', is intentional and they will be holding my feet to the fire, along with the rest of my colleagues, to make sure we do achieve results.
Can I just ask, emanating from one of Rhianon's questions—you said that the model is not the best to move forward, but, for me, working collaboratively is different to saying that the model isn't working, so are you saying, therefore, that the arm's-length system needs to change, are you saying that there needs to be some more direction given by you, other than Government? What type of model would you see to be for the future if this model isn't working? I didn't quite understand what you were trying to get at there.
Okay. I'm not suggesting that we need constitutional or organisational change. I think that works well. The principle of being arm's length, I think, is an important one, and we do guard jealously our independence and our ability to make individual funding decisions. That doesn't mean to say, of course, that the Welsh Government shouldn't have an opinion about how £30 million-worth of public money is spent, and we must take account of that, as we do, but in the delivery of activity, which is what I'm talking about in the model, when we were better resourced and when we had more staff, a lot of the developmental work, a lot of the contact with potential applicants, a lot of the work from a business services point of view that we were doing with organisations and individuals, we would do ourselves. Now, we are finding that we're either having to contract some of that out to specialists or find other partners locally who we can work with, who can provide us with the local intelligence that, previously, locally based arts council staff would have provided.
And how long is that sustainable? Because what I hear a lot of from the arts scene is that a lot of the other lobbies in Wales, such as health, education are quite loud, but the arts lobby seems to be sort of quieter, even though the arts really is probably struggling a lot more than other sectors, because of that non-statutory agenda. Do you feel that there is a role to try and raise the profile of the fact that, actually, if more cuts are made in this area, things will actually totally disappear?
Yes, I do. I don't know whether it'll be welcome or not to the Welsh Government, but I sense that the lobby is starting to grow and that artists and arts organisations and activists are beginning to think about how they get their message across. Yes, I think that health and education are loud voices, and rightly so—these are important areas of work—but I think it's also an opportunity for us to talk to colleagues in health and education to find out how we can enable the arts to deliver against some of their agendas.
Yes, we'll come on to that, thank you. Jenny Rathbone.
Thank you very much. Obviously, a large chunk of the money you get from Welsh Government goes to Arts Portfolio Wales. Could you just describe the relationship between Arts Portfolio Wales and the arts council?
Arts Portfolio Wales comprises at the moment 67 organisations that are spread across Wales. These are organisations large and small. So, from our largest, which is Welsh National Opera, to our smallest in terms of funding, which would be the Welfare Hall at Ystradgynlais—
So, how do you get to be a member of this club?
About every five years or so, we have an open application process, and we invite any organisation, including existing members of the portfolio, to submit business plans for the forthcoming five-year period. There's then quite a detailed process of assessment in terms of working out against the money that's available to us what the size of the portfolio is, and there's a whole series of—there are factors that inform that, from geographical spread to variety of art form.
Okay. So, the idea is to give some financial certainty to organisations over a five-year period.
Yes. At the moment, strictly speaking, we are only funded on an annual basis and, whilst we can give commitments—we were given an indication of funding for two years in this last funding round, which was helpful—a lot of arts organisations are planning on a three- to five-year planning horizon and the fact that, unlike our colleagues in England, we are unable to give that degree of certainty causes real problems. But, certainly, our larger organisations are contracting people now for projects that will be in 2021-22.
So, Arts Portfolio Wales is administered by you, is that right?
Yes. The funding is administered by us. These are all organisations that are independently constituted, which have their own governance arrangements, and our role once the funding has been allocated is to monitor their performance.
Obviously, there's been quite a lot of debate about some organisations. National Theatre Wales—there's been an interesting debate about its role, and you yourselves have also submitted to people's interests and comments on what you're doing. How do you think your plans are going to change in light of your commitment to have a much greater commitment to equality, diversity and fairness? Your chair's remarks were very robust in this regard.
They were. And I think that we are going to have a challenging few months ahead as we get into the detail of how, with the portfolio, we want to move forward. To be fair, a large number of those organisations are already there and are already committed to broadening and widening access, and in those areas I think it will be a relatively straightforward conversation. But, I'm afraid there are organisations that will need help to understand (a) what this means and (b) how serious we are. We've already undertaken a round of training and briefing with organisations, which went very well, and there was a strong recognition across the piece that this was the direction of travel we needed to go in. However, at the points at which it starts to bite, i.e. in the precise activities that these organisations are doing, the precise make-up of their boards, the precise make-up of their workforce in terms of who is engaged, those will be the moments where the challenges will increase.
Okay. The Sherman Theatre, which is in my constituency, has obviously been pathbreaking, not only in getting the first Olivier Award but also its work with people with protected characteristics, which I observed over the summer. So, what's your role in, if you like, spreading good practice so everybody's aware of the types of things that can be done to bring in new audiences?
The Sherman Theatre has been a real beacon in this area, and I think the transformation of the Sherman's fortunes—. You were asking about organisations that attract press comment; well, the Sherman, six or seven years ago, was firmly in that category. However, under the sadly-soon-to-be-departing artistic director, Rachel O'Riordan, they've done a fantastic job. I think that the Sherman 5 programme is a real leader in Wales, because it shows a very practical way that you can engage different people in what you're doing. We chose, for precisely the reasons of your question, to launch our corporate plan at the Sherman, and Rachel O'Riordan spoke about Sherman 5 as part of our corporate plan launch.
Thank you for that. Time's short, so I just wanted to ask you about the lottery funding. I noticed that £900,000 of grants went to individuals, and that presents a very significant monitoring and administration commitment. Could you just explain to us why you do that, as opposed to giving it to organisations?
I think that if you're going to develop opportunities in the arts, then I think one has to do both. One has to support the organisation, but one also has to support the creative professional, the creative individual, the ones who, at the end of the day, are actually making the work. We are very keen to support and enable individuals to develop their creative practice, their skills, their professionalism. So, programmes, and probably the most high profile is our Creative Wales awards, where we make 10 awards a year, and these are to generally established artists who, for whatever reason, want to explore a new direction in their practice. At a time when, rightly, we are so preoccupied with the needs of younger people in terms of education and training, it's sometimes easier to overlook those older people who are at a particular stage in their career, and I think it's very important. The majority of our funding goes to organisations, but we must support the creative individual.
How much is the policy around the distribution of lottery funding determined by the lottery, as opposed to you?
There are lottery directions—financial and policy directions—that set out in broad terms what we can and can't fund. Those are reviewed by the Welsh Government, and they consult with us and talk to us about that. But in the same way that we are allowed a high degree of discretion in terms of individual decisions around grant in aid funding, then pretty much the same applies to lottery.
So, do you envisage any conflict in relation to your new commitment to equalities, diversity and fairness?
No. This is absolutely four-square in terms of what lottery funding is there to do, and lottery funding is there to reach into those communities, those places, those people who, for whatever reason, have faced impediments to engaging with mainstream arts or arts provision. So, no, the lottery is our friend in this respect.
Okay. So, do you think you could be criticised in the past for not having given sufficient emphasis to these issues?
I was pressed on this in a radio interview I did recently, and I think the only conclusion one can draw from that is 'yes', because if we had been doing better in the past, this wouldn't be such an acute issue. So, I think it's been a real impetus to our council to say, 'This needs to change.'
Sorry, I just wanted to hear off the record just what your views were on the decline in the lottery funding for Wales generally. That's something that we are concerned about in relation to how arts groups then may have to look for alternative streams.
I think the committee is wise to be very concerned about this, and just to be clear, it doesn't just impact on arts lottery funding; it impacts on the good causes across the piece. What is happening at the moment is through a combination of poor sales performance by Camelot Group, the National Lottery provider, and really quite aggressive competition from other lotteries—so-called 'society lotteries'. When the original legislation was set up, society lotteries were supposed to be for those small, local charities—the local wildlife trust or the local play group. What has happened is that clever people abroad have found ways of aggregating society lotteries to create a national organisation. So, if one thinks about perhaps the most aggressive, which is the People's Postcode Lottery, this is an organisation that is based in the Netherlands and pays no tax in the UK. It has decimated the official national lottery in the Netherlands, and is targeting the UK and Germany as the two countries where regulatory requirements make it easy to do so.
In practical terms, back around 2013, we were receiving £19 million a year from the lottery. In recent years, it's dipped as low as £15.5 million and £16 million. So, last—
So, £90 million—.
Oh, one nine to 15. Ah, I thought that was a big difference. [Laughter.] I didn't hear you properly then. Yes, quite significant. Okay. But it's still significant.
And that's being replicated across all of the good causes—so, sport, heritage, the work that—.
So, what's the answer? What are you trying to do to mitigate against some of the cuts that will have to happen as a result of people not getting lottery funding?
There are two things that I think we can do. We've been working quite hard with National Lottery—Camelot to promote the benefits of the lottery more widely to improve their marketing, to try and get the message out about who is benefiting from lottery funding. There are some potential green shoots that that might be having an effect. I think we still feel slightly aggrieved that the way the lottery licence was set up means that things like scratch cards, which deliver only 10p in the pound to the good causes, are the most popular purchases as opposed to the main lotto game, which is in decline but was delivering 25p in the pound.
I think there is a job of work—and we, as a neutral, independent organisation, have to be careful how we do this—but I think there is some lobbying and campaigning with the UK Government that is needed. And the question, I suppose, one might usefully ask is, 'Why, when one reads every year that Camelot's profits are increasing year on year, is the income for good causes declining year on year?'
Okay. That's something we can pursue as well as a committee. Okay, moving on—David Melding.
Thank you, Chair. A couple of years ago, I think this committee published a report on the non-public funding of the arts, and I'm just wondering how useful that report has been and how many of the recommendations you feel you've incorporated in your work to broaden the range of funding streams.
I think it was a terrifically important piece of work, and a timely piece of work. I think that for all of the reasons that we've explored this morning, we have to stretch every pound of public funding as far as possible. But I think the starting point of the committee was, 'Well, that's a noble aspiration, but, actually, how practical is that in today's economic context, and what are the opportunities for doing that?' So, for us, it was a really important focus of debate, and I think that the published report galvanised people within the arts.
Since it's been published, initiatives that we've taken include—we've prepared a new guide aimed at those who were new to fundraising. I think one of the concerns of this committee was that we seemed to have a very good programme in resilience that was targeted at the portfolio, but what about those many organisations that weren't members of the portfolio?
We are supporting bursaries and fellowships in projects like the National Arts Fundraising School and the Arts Marketing Association's work to try and raise the level of skills. We are funding or contributing funds to Arts & Business Cymru's fundraising internships, where they place people within organisations. We are embarking on a series of visits of that type; we've got two days in London next month, meeting the large trusts and foundations to tackle this issue of whether or not Wales is getting its fair share of that funding.
The area that is challenging us at the moment is extending resilience for all of the reasons that we were hearing earlier on about whether we're being too thinly stretched, because extending the programme, which is a good programme, depends on resources, and would that we felt confident that we would get additional resource from the Welsh Government to do this. We'll certainly ask, but I think that we need to look from within our own resources. I think that we've still to complete the evaluation of all of the resilience projects, but the anecdotal evidence is it's making such a difference that we really do need to roll this out more widely.