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The body language over Irish has changed – and appointing commissioners is the next step

Daithi McKay


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Irish language activists at Stormont to mark the long-promised Irish language and Ulster Scots legislation introduced at Westminster in May

Irish language activists at Stormont to mark the long-promised Irish language and Ulster Scots legislation introduced at Westminster in May

Irish language activists at Stormont to mark the long-promised Irish language and Ulster Scots legislation introduced at Westminster in May

The scrutiny of the Identity and Language (NI) Bill concluded in the House of Lords recently. The introduction of this piece of legislation in May was hugely significant but the fact that it isn’t the subject of much public discussion is, I hope, a sign that unnecessary battles over language are becoming a thing of the past.

It has been 16 years since the St Andrews Agreement stated that “the Government will introduce an Irish Language Act” and whilst the Bill in the Lords is a cluster of Bills meshed together it represents a significant step forward for Gaeilge and our growing Irish speaking community.


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