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What are standards?

Standards explain how organisations are expected to use the Welsh language in different situations.

The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011 establishes a legal framework to impose a duty on some organisations to comply with standards of conduct on the Welsh Language. The Measure notes that Welsh Ministers may, by regulations, specify standards in the following areas:

  • service delivery
  • policy making
  • operational
  • promotion
  • record keeping

The duties which come from the standards mean that organisations should not treat the Welsh language less favourably than the English language, together with promoting and facilitating the use of the Welsh language (making it easier for people to use in their day-to-day-life).

Standards aim to:

  • make it clear to organisations what their duties are in relation to the Welsh language
  • make it clearer to Welsh speakers about the services they can expect to receive in Welsh
  • make Welsh language services more consistent and improve their quality.

There is a statutory process to follow to impose standards on organistions. Further information about that process can be found by clicking here.

What is a compliance notice?
A ‘compliance notice’ is a document that the Commissioner creates and gives to an organisation. It includes those exact standards (within the regulations) that organisations are required to comply with. There is an imposition day for each of the standards within the compliance notice – which is the date from which a standard must be operational. The earliest imposition day must be 6 months from the date in which the notice is given to an organisation. Each compliance notice is unique to every organisation.

What are regulations?
‘Regulations’ is the name given to a legal document passed by the National Assembly for Wales. It includes a list of standards that the Commissioner may impose on organisations to which come under the regulations. There are many sets of regulations which are usually relevant to similar types of organisations. It does not necessarily mean that all of the standards within the regulations are required of those organisations. Welsh Ministers are responsible for drafting the regulations.

All the regulations which have been approved by the National Assembly for Wales can be viewed by clicking on the links below:  

The Welsh Language Standards (No.3) Regulations were not approved by the National Assembly for Wales on 15 March 2016.  However, they were re-submitted and approved as No.6 Regulations on 31 January, 2017.

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