Welsh Language Survey, part 2: Strong business support

This next group of questions is generally related to the use of Welsh in business.

If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that self-service tills offer the customer the choice of using Welsh?

Very important ... 21%
Important ... 33%
Moderately important ... 19%
Of little importance ... 13%
Not important at all ... 8%

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If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that their marketing materials and advertisements are bilingual (Welsh and English)

Very important ... 23%
Important ... 35%
Moderately important ... 19%
Of little importance ... 12%
Not important at all ... 6%

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If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that staff who can speak Welsh wear badges to show they can speak Welsh?

Very important ... 27%
Important ... 34%
Moderately important ... 17%
Of little importance ... 11%
Not important at all ... 6%

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If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that their products have bilingual packaging?

Very important ... 18%
Important ... 29%
Moderately important ... 22%
Of little importance ... 18%
Not important at all ... 9%

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If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that their web site is bilingual?

Very important ... 21%
Important ... 36%
Moderately important ... 17%
Of little importance ... 11%
Not important at all ... 8%

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If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services, how important do you think it is that an organisation should ensure that staff training is available so that staff can learn Welsh?

Very important ... 30%
Important ... 35%
Moderately important ... 16%
Of little importance ... 10%
Not important at all ... 4%

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These responses show that there is very strong support across Wales for Welsh to be more used and more prominent in the sphere of business and commerce. In every case there is an absolute majority of people who think the use of Welsh is important. That should act as a sobering reminder to our AMs and MPs as they look at the Welsh Language LCO.

One point to note is that each of the questions starts with "If an organisation wants to offer customers bilingual services ... " The more astute among us would realize that there must of course be some businesses and organizations which do not want to offer their customers any sort of service in Welsh.

But think about it. What we have seen fairly consistently over the past decade or so is that most large companies do at least pay lip service to offering a bilingual service. Some of them boast about it. But anybody who has tried to use the services provided knows that they are often patchy and second rate.

Some of the questions, about badges and bilingual self-service tills for example, are completely uncontentious no-brainers. They cost virtually nothing. But marketing and packaging materials in Welsh are a step beyond what we currently do. I think there is every case for saying that all statutory information (nutritional information, lists of ingredients, return policies, guarantees and the like) that currently has to be provided in English should also be provided in Welsh.

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However the last question above strikes me as being most important, because it recognizes the practical steps that need to be taken in order to provide a proper bilingual service. I've kept one proposition back as a "trump card", which is this:

When staff want to learn Welsh to use at work, the government should help their employers to provide training for them

Agree strongly ... 33%
Agree ... 39%
Neither agree nor disagree ... 13%
Disagree ... 6%
Disagree strongly ... 4%

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Net agreement ... 62%

This is important because it again falls into the overwhelming support category. Only 10% disagree. The vast majority of us agree that public money should be spent on helping staff learn enough Welsh to be able to provide a proper bilingual service.

Far from complaining about public money being used to help people learn Welsh, it appears that the vast majority of us will support our tax money being used in this way.

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2 comments:

best4future said...

I just finished an article on learning a second language helps boost children’s brain power, making children stronger, quicker and smarter. The effect is more obvious the earlier that a second language was learned.

So I totally agree with you. That is why we as parents should encourage our children to learn a second language when they are young.

best4future said...

Glad to find another person who promotes bilingual life. Me too! I am a big fun of bilingual education, bilingual parenting, and bilingual life as you are. Right now I am teaching my baby to learn Chinese, hoping she will become a bilingual in the future.

Can we exchange link? My reciprocal link goes like this:

Best4Future Blog: Bringing up baby bilingual!
Devoted to bilingual learning, parenting and teaching!

You can submit your link at http://www.best4future.com/blog and click "links". Thank you!

Glad to find another person who promotes bilingual life. Me too! I am a big fun of bilingual education, bilingual parenting, and bilingual life as you are. Right now I am teaching my baby to learn Chinese, hoping she will become a bilingual in the future.

Why don't you join in our bilingual forum (http://www.best4future.com/forum) and share your bilingual insights and experience? See you there!

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