|The Irish Language home page of |
the Dept of Social Protection
Finding personnel with the ability to actually communicate in the language is another difficulty. Another problem faced is the inability of people to accept the given name or surname. All people who use the Irish (and correct form) of their surname have experienced questioning, "What's that in English?" I usually reply "Track" or "Trace" which is really on trend nowadays. (See Tearma.ie!)
These are everyday problems for the Irish speaker trying to excercise his constitutional rights to using the National Language which is the Official Language of the state. ("Ós í an Ghaeilge an teanga náisiúnta is í an phríomhtheanga oifigiúil í." - Since Irish is the National Language it is the principal official language! Alt 8.1 Bunreacht na hÉireann).
Naturally many people get tired of the incessant trouble they experience in dealing with the state and as often as not revert to English in order to save time and bother. No doubt the also contributes to the retreat of the Irish speaking areas and the so-called lack of demand for services in Irish that the civil servants report. If you want to read about some of these cases you could do worse than looks up any of the reports from the Coimisinéir Teanga since the institution of that office.
But back to Ciarán.
An Scéal seo ar Gaeltacht21:
The straw that broke the camels back for Ciarán was another State Department entirely - the Department of Social Protection. He starts by listing three irritating occasions where the state failed to serve him as a user of the First Official language of the state during July 2020 alone. then he goes on:
|Ciarán Ó Feinneadha|
"My parents baptized me Ciarán Ó Feinneadha. In my discussions with the local Office I was told “You are not on the system” and “you are not on the system at all”. So on the registration system for birth certificates by the Irish government there is no ‘Ciarán Ó Feinneadha’. They have translated my surname into an English surname they have created for me to file my real name in the system. I was told on three occasions that they have done this for everyone who has an Irish surname.
"The correct Irish version is still on the certificate itself but they have translated all our Irish surnames into English (if it is English) and have filed us in that English version only. So when they tried to confirm my birth certificate I was asked what the English version of my name was and of course I refused to invent one because it doesn't exist - I'm kind of ashamed to claim WARRIOR of course. So the local office couldn't find me in the system without the corrupted "English" version of the name under which I was filed, which I or my parents have never used.
"Both my parents have passed away in recent years and I feel that this is a personal insult to them as well as to me and to all Gaels. As well as being abusive and rude - it appears that their (the Department's) anti-Irishness has taken away all human understanding."
Comments on this on his page range from incandescent indignation to "well what do you expect?"
My own comment as a taxpayer to this state since 1966 and still suffering this kind of disrespect is a very weary indignation and very little surprise.
• A personal apology has been made to Ciarán but a statement to Tuairisc.ie leaves many questions unanswered. Conradh na Gaeilge is seeking a meeting and a trawl through the records to find out how many other cases like this may occur. (see Article 5/8/2021)