Pwyllgor Diwylliant, Cyfathrebu, y Gymraeg, Chwaraeon, a Chysylltiadau Rhyngwladol

Culture, Communications, Welsh Language, Sport, and International Relations Committee

08/11/2023

Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol

Committee Members in Attendance

Alun Davies
Carolyn Thomas
Delyth Jewell Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor
Committee Chair
Llyr Gruffydd
Tom Giffard

Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol

Others in Attendance

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson Cadeirydd, Chwaraeon Cymru
Chair, Sport Wales
Brian Davies Prif Weithredwr, Chwaraeon Cymru
Chief Executive, Sport Wales
Efa Gruffudd Jones Comisiynydd y Gymraeg
Welsh Language Commissioner
Lowri Williams Cyfarwyddwr Strategol, Comisiynydd y Gymraeg
Strategic Director, Welsh Language Commissioner

Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol

Senedd Officials in Attendance

Haidee James Ail Glerc
Second Clerk
Lleu Williams Clerc
Clerk
Osian Bowyer Ymchwilydd
Researcher
Rhea James Dirprwy Glerc
Deputy Clerk

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.

Cyfarfu’r pwyllgor yn y Senedd a thrwy gynhadledd fideo.

Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 09:35.

The committee met in the Senedd and by video-conference.

The meeting began at 09:35.

Penodi Cadeirydd dros dro
Appointment of temporary Chair

Bore da. Croeso i gyfarfod y pwyllgor y bore yma. Nid yw'r Cadeirydd yn gallu bod yn y cyfarfod heddiw, felly, yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.22, galwaf am enwebiadau ar gyfer Cadeirydd dros dro tan bod y Cadeirydd yn cyrraedd heddiw.

Good morning. Welcome to this meeting of the committee. The Chair is unable to be in the meeting today, so, in accordance with Standing Order 17.22, I call for nominations for a temporary Chair until the Chair arrives today.

Dwi'n clywed enwebiad ar gyfer Llyr.

Llyr has been nominated.

Rydw i'n datgan felly mai Llyr Gruffydd sydd wedi ei benodi yn Gadeirydd dros dro, ac rydw i'n galw arno i gymryd sedd y Cadeirydd tan i'r Cadeirydd gyrraedd.

I therefore declare that Llyr Gruffydd has been appointed temporary Chair, and I call on him to take the Chair until the Chair joins us.

Penodwyd Llyr Gruffydd yn Gadeirydd dros dro.

Llyr Gruffydd was appointed temporary Chair.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Gobeithio mai dros dro, dros dro y byddaf i fan hyn, achos dwi'n cael ar ddeall bod Delyth ddim yn bell o gwbl o'r adeilad, felly, cyn gynted ag y gwnaiff hi gyrraedd, mi wnawn ni'n amlwg ganiatáu iddi gymryd ei lle. 

Thank you very much. I hope that my appointment as Chair is very temporary, because I understand that Delyth is not far at all from the building, so, as soon as she arrives, we will obviously allow her to take her seat as Chair. 

1. Cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datgan buddiannau
1. Introductions, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest

Yn absenoldeb y Cadeirydd, yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.22, mae'r pwyllgor wedi cytuno i fi weithredu fel Cadeirydd dros dro. Felly, mi gychwynnwn ni ar y cyfarfod. Ydy popeth mewn trefn? Iawn. Mae eisiau nodi bod Hefin David wedi anfon ei ymddiheuriadau, felly mi nodwn ni hynny, ac yn amlwg, mae Delyth yn ymddiheuro, ond mi fydd hi yn cyrraedd o fewn y munudau nesaf. Cyn dechrau, oes gan unrhyw Aelod unrhyw fuddiannau i'w datgan? Nac oes. Dyna ni. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

In the absence of the Chair, in accordance with Standing Order 17.22, the committee has agreed that I should act as temporary Chair. So, we'll start the meeting. Is everything in order? Yes, I see that it is. We do need to note that Hefin David has sent his apologies, so we will note that, and clearly, Delyth apologises, but she will be arriving within the next few moments. Before we move on, do any Members have any declarations of interest to make? No. There we are. Thank you very much.

2. Craffu ar waith Comisiynydd y Gymraeg – Hydref 2023
2. Scrutiny of the Welsh Language Commissioner - Autumn 2023

Fe symudwn ni felly at yr ail eitem ar yr agenda, sef craffu ar waith Comisiynydd y Gymraeg. Dwi'n estyn croeso cynnes i Efa Gruffudd Jones, Comisiynydd y Gymraeg, ynghyd â Lowri Williams, cyfarwyddwr strategol gyda Chomisiynydd y Gymraeg. Mi awn ni'n syth i gwestiynau, ac mi wnaf i wahodd Alun Davies i gychwyn.

We'll move on therefore to the second item on the agenda, which is scrutiny of the Welsh Language Commissioner. I extend a warm welcome to Efa Gruffudd Jones, the Welsh Language Commissioner, as well as to Lowri Williams, strategic director at the Welsh Language Commissioner's office. We'll go straight to questions, and I'll ask Alun Davies to start.

Diolch yn fawr. Croeso y bore yma. Siẁd mae'n mynd?

Thank you very much. Welcome. How's it going?

—yn fy marn i. Hoffech chi i fi ymhelaethu ar sut dwi'n gweld—

—in my view. Would you like me to expand on how I see—

Tipyn bach, tipyn bach. Y tro diwethaf roeddech chi yma oedd ar gyfer y pre-appointment hearing, dwi'n meddwl.

Yes, a little. The last time you were here was for the pre-appointment hearing, I believe.

Dŷch chi wedi cael eich penodi, so sut dŷch chi'n meddwl mae pethau wedi mynd dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf?

You have since been appointed, so how do you think that things have gone over the past year?

Iawn. Diolch am y croeso i fod yma heddiw, a dwi'n falch iawn o'r cyfle, fel y gwnes i ei addo, dwi'n credu, i ddod yn ôl ac adrodd i chi ar ôl i fi ddechrau ar fy ngwaith.

Dwi wedi mwynhau'r misoedd diwethaf yn fawr iawn, a dwi wir yn edrych ymlaen at y blynyddoedd sydd i ddod. Mae rhywbeth braf am gael tymor penodol—dwi'n meddwl bod honno'n system dda; mae'n golygu bod gyda fi ffocws clir am yr hyn dwi'n mynd i'w gynllunio i'w wneud. Dwi yn teimlo fy mod i nawr mewn sefyllfa dda i asesu lle ydyn ni, ac i sicrhau ein bod ni'n gweithredu yn y ffordd fwyaf effeithiol, gyda'r impact mwyaf ar y Gymraeg. Prif nod Comisiynydd y Gymraeg yw hybu a hwyluso defnyddio'r Gymraeg, ac yn amlwg, dwi eisiau gweld Cymru yn wlad lle y gall pobl ddefnyddio eu Cymraeg yn hawdd a heb rwystr, felly dwi eisiau sicrhau fy mod i'n defnyddio'r pwerau sydd gyda fi drwy'r Mesur i sicrhau hynny.

Mae angen i ni gwestiynu'n gyson sut mae'n gwaith ni'n arwain at gynnydd yn y defnydd o'r Gymraeg, a dŷn ni wrthi'n edrych ar y pethau yna nawr. Mi wnaeth cyfrifiad 2021 osod cyd-destun i'r gwaith, a dwi ddim eisiau bychanu o gwbl ganlyniadau'r cyfrifiad, ond dwi'n meddwl bod y darlun ar draws Cymru efallai'n fwy cymhleth nag y mae'r ffigurau moel yn eu hawgrymu. Yn fy swydd flaenorol, fe welais i'r cynnydd mewn diddordeb mewn dysgu Cymraeg, ac mae'r diddordeb hwnnw'n parhau. Mae gan Gymru fywyd diwylliannol bywiog, a thra bod hynny'n wir, dwi'n credu bod sefyllfa'r Gymraeg yn obeithiol. Mae dyfodol y Gymraeg, dwi'n hollol grediniol, yn nwylo'n plant a'n pobl ifanc ni, felly dwi'n dal i fod o'r farn bod angen i blant a phobl ifanc fod yn flaenoriaeth i'n gwaith ni, a dwi wedi bod yn ymweld â phlant a phobl ifanc yn Llangefni, y Preseli, ac yn y blaen.

Right. Thank you very much for the welcome today, and I'm very pleased to have an opportunity, as I promised, I believe, to come back and report after starting my work.

I have enjoyed the past few months a great deal, and I very much look forward to the years to come. It's wonderful to have a fixed term—I think that's a good system; it means that I have a clear focus for what I'm going to plan to do. I do feel that I'm now in a good position to assess where we are, and to ensure that we operate in the most effective way, with the greatest impact on the Welsh language. The main objective of the Welsh Language Commissioner is to promote and facilitate the use of the Welsh language, and clearly, I want to see Wales as a country where people can use their Welsh easily and without any barriers, so I want to ensure that I use the powers that I have through the Measure to ensure that that happens.

We do need to question regularly how our work leads to progress in terms of the use of the Welsh language, and we're looking at those issues now. The 2021 census set out a context for that work, and I don't want to downplay the results of the census at all, but I think that the picture across Wales is perhaps more complex than those figures would suggest. In my previous post, I saw the increase in the interest in learning Welsh, and that interest continues. Wales has a very lively cultural life, and while that's true, I believe that the situation for the Welsh language is hopeful. The future of the Welsh language, I firmly believe, is in the hands of our children and young people, so I remain of the view that children and young people need to be a priority for our work, and I've been visiting children and young people in Llangefni, Preseli, and so on.

Cyn i ni fynd ymhellach, fe wnaf i jest nodi bod y Cadeirydd wedi cyrraedd, felly fe wnaf i symud o'r Gadair a chaniatáu i'r Cadeirydd gymryd ei lle, ond, plîs, cariwch ymlaen.

Before we go any further, I'll just note that the Chair has arrived, so I will move from the Chair and allow the Chair to take her place, but, please, do continue.

Mi wnaf i barhau â'r ateb—ydy hwnna'n iawn? Felly, argraffiadau cychwynnol: dwi wedi darganfod bod swyddfa a swyddogion y comisiynydd yn ymwneud ag ystod ehangach o waith nag oeddwn i, ac efallai chi, a'r cyhoedd, yn gwybod amdano fe, o bosib. Mae yna dîm effeithiol sy'n gweithio gyda'r sector preifat i gynyddu'r gwasanaethau sydd ar gael iddyn nhw, ac rŷn ni'n gweithio hefyd gyda'r trydydd sector ac maen nhw yn ymateb yn frwd iawn i'r ymgysylltu gyda ni. Mae gyda ni rywbeth o'r enw y Cynnig Cymraeg lle mae pobl yn arwyddo i gynnig mwy o wasanaethau Cymraeg. 

Dwi'n meddwl ein bod ni'n gwneud gwaith effeithiol yn dylanwadu ar bolisi. Mae yna dîm bychan yn ymateb i ymgynghoriadau, yn cynnal cyfarfodydd ac yn gwneud gwaith yn rhoi tystiolaeth. Er enghraifft, byddwn ni yfory yn rhoi tystiolaeth i'r Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio. Rŷm ni'n gweithio'n dda gyda chomisiynwyr eraill, ac fe gyhoeddom ni adroddiad dros yr haf yn ymwneud ag anghenion dysgu ychwanegol. Mae gyda ni gyfrifoldebau i ddarparu cyngor ar enwau safonol lleoedd, ac mae hwnnw'n waith pwysig. Ac rŷm ni hefyd ar hyn o bryd yn cadeirio Cymdeithas Ryngwladol y Comisiynwyr Iaith, gwaith hynod ddiddorol a phwysig, dwi'n credu, o ran rhannu arfer da yn rhyngwladol. Mae hyn, wrth gwrs, ar ben y gwaith o reoleiddio efallai eich bod chi'n fwy cyfarwydd ag e, a dros y flwyddyn ddiwethaf mi fuodd y swyddogion cydymffurfio yn cydweithio â'r cyrff hynny sy'n dod o dan safonau iaith ac fe gyflwynwyd 250 o gamau gorfodi o dan y polisïau hynny. 

Dwi hefyd wedi darganfod, ar y cyfan, a dweud y gwir, bod gan y mwyafrif llethol, neu efallai'r holl gyrff cyhoeddus dwi wedi ymwneud â nhw, agwedd gadarnhaol iawn tuag at y Gymraeg. Maen nhw ar dân eisiau dweud wrthyf i beth maen nhw'n ei wneud. Mae ganddyn nhw rai heriau. Ond dwi yn sicr yn meddwl bod hynny yn rhywbeth sydd wedi newid dros y 10 i 15 mlynedd diwethaf, a dwi'n meddwl bod modd tadogi hynny, yn sicr, i raddau i'r safonau sydd wedi eu gosod sy'n gwneud y Gymraeg yn non-negotiable, i ddefnyddio term Saesneg. Maen nhw'n deall ei fod yn ofyniad cyfreithiol, a maen nhw eisiau ei gyflawni fe. Felly, dwi yn meddwl o'r hyn dwi wedi weld bod yna shifft mewn agwedd a dyhead, ddim bob tro mewn cyflawniad weithiau oherwydd problemau ymarferol. Ond mae'r hyn rŷm ni'n ei ddisgwyl nawr yn ddiamod—gan y BBC, er enghraifft. Roeddwn i'n sôn am Drafnidiaeth Cymru a chyhoeddiadau Cymraeg—fuasai hynny ddim wedi bod yn wir, dwi ddim yn meddwl, ddegawd yn ôl. Ac rŷn ni'n gallu gweld mai'r cyrff sydd wedi bod hiraf o dan y safonau iaith yw'r rhai sydd yn perfformio orau, yn ôl ein tystiolaeth ni.

Ond mae mwy i'w wneud, ac, yn sicr, mae sicrhau bod pobl yn defnyddio'r gwasanaethau sydd nawr ar gael yn her. Wrth ddechrau ar fy swydd, fe nodais i dair blaenoriaeth. Fe wnaf i redeg drwyddyn nhw yn gyflym iawn i chi. Does dim byd wedi gwneud i fi feddwl fy mod i eisiau ei newid nhw, ond efallai fy mod i eisiau ychwanegu atyn nhw. Y cyntaf yw hyrwyddo'r gwasanaethau sydd ar gael. Rŷn ni wedi cyhoeddi cyngor i gyrff ar hynny, ond, yn sicr, rŷn ni am iddyn nhw wneud mwy ac rŷn ni am eu cefnogi nhw i wneud mwy. Mae cynyddu'r defnydd o'r Gymraeg yn y gweithle hefyd yn flaenoriaeth. Mae hwnna'n rhywbeth sydd o fewn cwmpas fy nylanwad i oherwydd y safonau sy'n ymwneud â gweithleoedd. A dwi'n sicr eisiau blaenoriaethu pobl ifanc ym mhopeth dwi'n ei wneud. 

Y flaenoriaeth bellach dwi eisiau—dwi'n dod at y diwedd—a'r flaenoriaeth ychwanegol fuaswn i eisiau ychwanegu at hynny, dwi'n credu, ar sail y dystiolaeth dwi wedi ei weld, yw'r flaenoriaeth i ni wella'r defnydd o'r Gymraeg yn y sector iechyd. Maen nhw o dan safonau ers 2019. Dŷn nhw ddim yn perfformio cystal â'r sectorau eraill, ac, wrth gwrs, mae'n hanfodol bod gofal ac iechyd yn dod yn gynyddol ar gael i ni yn Gymraeg. 

Felly, i grynhoi, arwyddion positif ond heriau, a dwi eisiau arwain sefydliad llwyddiannus sy'n mynd i'r afael â'r heriau ac sy'n dangos ôl ei waith. 

I will continue with my response—is that okay? So, my initial impressions: I have discovered that the office and the officials of the commissioner are involved in a wider range of work than I, and you perhaps, and the public, were aware of. There is a very effective team that works with the private sector to increase the services available to them, and we are working also with the third sector and they are responding very enthusiastically to the engagement with us. We have the Cynnig Cymraeg, the Welsh Offer, where people sign up to provide more services through the medium of Welsh. 

I think we are doing effective work in influencing policy. There is a small team responding to consultations, holding meetings and doing work giving evidence. For example, tomorrow we'll be giving evidence to the Reform Bill Committee. We are working well with other commissioners, and we published a report over the summer with regard to additional learning needs. We have responsibilities to provide advice on standard place names, and that's very important work. And we are currently chairing the International Association of Language Commissioners. That's very interesting and important work, I think, in terms of sharing good practice internationally. This is, of course, on top of the work of regulating that perhaps you are more familiar with, and over the past year the compliance officials worked with those organisations subject to the standards and 250 enforcement steps were taken as a result of those policies. 

I've also found, on the whole, truth be told, that the vast majority, or perhaps all of the public bodies that I have engaged with, have a very positive attitude towards the Welsh language. They want to tell me what they are doing, and they have some challenges that they're facing. But I certainly think that that is something that's changed over the past 10 to 15 years, and I think that that can be attributed, to some extent, to the standards that have been set that make the Welsh language non-negotiable, to use the English term. They understand that it is a legal requirement, and they do want to fulfil it. So, I do think in terms of what I've seen that there's been a shift in aspiration and attitude, not always in terms of implementation because of practical issues that arise. But what we expect now is unconditional—from the BBC, for example. I was talking about Transport for Wales and Welsh language announcements—that wouldn't have been the case, I don't think, a decade ago. And we can see that the bodies that have been under the standards regime for longest are those that perform best, according to our evidence.

But there is more to do, and certainly, ensuring that people use the services that are now available is a challenge. In starting my role, I noted three priorities. I'll run through them very briefly. Nothing has made me think that I want to change those, but perhaps I want to add to them. The first is to promote the services that are available. I've announced guidance for bodies on that, but certainly, we want them to do more and we want to support them to do more. Increasing the use of the Welsh language in the workplace is also a priority. That's something that is within the scope of my influence because of the standards related to workplaces. And I certainly want to prioritise young people in everything that I do. 

And the additional priority—I'm coming to the end now—that I would want to add to that, on the basis of the evidence that I've seen, is the priority for us to improve the use of the Welsh language in the health sector. They are under the standards regime since 2019. They aren't performing as well as other sectors, and, of course, it's vital that healthcare services are increasingly available through the medium of Welsh.

So, to summarise, there are positive signs, but there are challenges that remain. I want to lead a successful organisation that tackles those challenges and that shows the impact of its work. 

09:40

Diolch. Alun, jest cyn i chi fynd ymlaen plis, roeddwn i eisiau jest ymddiheuro i'r pwyllgor ac i'r tystion fy mod i wedi bod yn hwyr y bore yma. Roedd y trenau yn hwyr, ond roedd y cyhoeddiadau yn dweud eu bod nhw wedi eu canslo o leiaf yn Gymraeg hefyd. Felly, mae hynny'n rhywbeth. Ond diolch i Llyr am gamu i mewn. Nôl i chi, Alun. 

Thank you. Alun, before you go on, I just wanted to apologise to the committee and to our witnesses that I was late this morning. The trains were late, but the announcements stating that they were cancelled were available in Welsh. So, that's something. But thank you to Llyr for stepping in. Back to you, Alun.  

Diolch yn fawr. Mae yna ddau beth dwi eisiau dychwelyd atyn nhw o'ch ateb cyntaf chi. Yn gyntaf, roeddech chi'n dweud mai prif rôl y comisiynydd yw hyrwyddo a hybu'r Gymraeg. Rwy'n cytuno gyda hynny, ond mi fuasech chi yn cofio o'r gwrandawiad gawsom ni llynedd bod yna dipyn bach o dyndra yn y pwyllgor wrth i chi ddweud hynny. Dwi eisiau dod nôl atoch chi a gofyn i chi sut ydych chi'n gweld eich bod chi wedi bod yn cyflwyno hynny, achos mae hybu'r Gymraeg yn mynd tu hwnt i'r gyfraith a hawliau cyfreithiol—mae amboutu siarad a defnyddio'r Gymraeg. So, liciwn i ddeall tipyn bach mwy am sut ydych chi wedi bod yn mynd ati i wneud hynny.

Ac yn ail, pan oeddech chi'n sôn amboutu'r cyfrifiad, roeddech chi wedi defnyddio'r gair 'cymhleth', dwi'n meddwl, ond mae hyn yn air sy'n dweud dim, wrth gwrs. Mae'r cyfrifiad yn dweud un peth ac rydych chi'n dweud, 'Wel, mae'n gymhleth'. Wel, so what? Beth mae 'cymhleth' yn meddwl, yn eich barn chi?

Thank you. There are two things that I'd like to return to from your first response. First of all, you said that the main role of the commissioner is to promote and facilitate the use of the Welsh language. I agree with that, but you will recall from the hearing last year that there was some tension in the committee as you made those comments. I want to return to the issue and ask you how successful you've been in doing that, because promoting the Welsh language goes beyond the law and legal rights—it's about speaking and using the language. So, I'd like to understand a little more about how you've been doing that.

And secondly, when you mentioned the census, you used the word 'complex', I think—'cymhleth'. But that's a word that's ultimately meaningless, of course, because the census gives you a set of data, and you say, 'Well, it's complex'. Well, so what? What does 'complex' mean, in your opinion?

09:45

Ocê, fe wnaf i ddechrau gyda'r cyntaf. I raddau, dwi wedi dod i'r casgliad bod rhywfaint o drafodaeth ffug am hyrwyddo a hybu—i raddau—oherwydd, os ŷn ni'n creu gwasanaethau, a datblygu gwasanaethau, mae'n rhaid i chi eu hyrwyddo nhw, neu beth yw'r pwynt? Rŷch chi'n gofyn yn benodol am beth rŷn ni wedi'i wneud. Rŷn ni wedi cynnal arolwg o gyrff cyhoeddus a'r gwaith hybu maen nhw'n ei wneud, ac mae yna safon sy'n disgwyl iddyn nhw hybu eu gwasanaethau nhw. Rŷn ni wedi derbyn yr ymatebion. Yn gyffredinol, mae tua 50 y cant ohonyn nhw'n cynnal ymgyrchoedd penodol, ond mae yna waith pellach i'w wneud, buaswn i'n dweud, ac mae hwn yn dasg y byddwn ni am ymgymryd â hi. 

Yn fwy cyffredinol o ran hyrwyddo, byddwn ni'n cynnal ymgyrch ym mis Rhagfyr ar y cyd â'r cyrff yma i drio dylanwadu a sicrhau bod pobl yn gwybod beth sydd ar gael iddyn nhw. Un o'r pethau cymhleth yw—byddwch chi, efallai, wedi gweld hyn yn ein hadroddiad sicrwydd ni, a'r dystiolaeth sydd fanna—nad yw siaradwyr Cymraeg ar hyn o bryd ddim bob tro yn dewis defnyddio gwasanaethau Cymraeg. Mae yna lu o resymau am hynny. Does dim rhaid i mi eu dweud nhw i gyd, ond gallwch chi ddychmygu beth ydyn nhw: diffyg arfer, y gwahaniaeth yn safon y gwasanaethau, nad yw'r gwasanaeth ar gael yn ddiofyn, ac nad oes profiad blaenorol gyda nhw o ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg, efallai, mewn capasiti o ddelio â chorff cyhoeddus. 

Felly, mae'n rhaid i ni weithio ar y ffrynts yma i gyd, ond, yn syml iawn, hoffwn i weithio mwy gyda chyrff cyhoeddus i'w cynorthwyo nhw i hyrwyddo'r gwasanaethau sydd ganddyn nhw ar gynnnig. Ac mae llawer ohonyn nhw yn gwneud gwaith da i'r perwyl yma, ond rydyn ni eisiau mwy o bobl i ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg sydd nawr ar gynnig.

Okay, I'll start with the first point. To an extent, I've come to the conclusion that there is some sort of false debate about promotion and facilitation—to an extent—because if we create services and develop services, you have to promote them, or what's the point? You asked specifically what we've done. We've held a survey of public bodies and the promotion work that they do, and there is a standard that expects them to promote their services. We have received the responses and, in general, around 50 per cent of them do hold specific campaigns, but there is further work to do, I would say, and that's a task that we would want to take up.

More generally in terms of promotion, we'll be holding a campaign in December alongside these bodies to try to influence and ensure that people know what is available to them. One of the complexities—perhaps you will have seen this in our assurance report, and the evidence there—is that Welsh speakers at the moment don't always choose to use services through the medium of Welsh. There are a whole host of reasons for that. I don't have to set them all out, as you can imagine what they are: a lack of practice, the difference in the quality of services, that the service isn't available as the default, and that they have no previous experience of using the Welsh language, perhaps, in the capacity of dealing with a public body.

So, we have to work on all of these fronts, but, simply put, I would like to work more with public bodies to support them to promote the services that they have available. And many of them are doing good work to that end, but we want more people to use the Welsh language that's now available.

Sori, gaf i dorri ar draws yn fanna? Rydych chi'n disgrifio proses sydd yn eithaf cul mewn sawl ffordd. Pan dwi'n sôn amboutu hybu'r Gymraeg, dwi'n sôn am hybu'r Gymraeg; rydych chi'n sôn amboutu hybu gwasanaethau trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

If I could interrupt you there, you're describing a process that is relatively narrow in many ways. When I'm talking about promoting the Welsh language, I'm talking about it in general terms; you're talking about promoting services through the medium of Welsh.

Ydw, oherwydd does dim adnoddau gyda fi, yw'r gwir amdani hi, i wneud llawer mwy na hynny. Os wyt ti'n sôn am gynnal ymgyrchoedd enfawr neu ddigwyddiadau, dyw'r gyllideb ddim gyda fi. 

Yes, because I don't have resources, truth be told, to do much more than that. If you're talking about holding major campaigns or events, then I don't have the budget to do that. 

Dwi ddim yn sôn am unrhyw beth enfawr; dwi'n sôn am eich blaenoriaethau chi.

I'm not talking about something major; I'm talking about your priorities.

Dyw'r gyllideb ddim gyda fi, yw'r ateb syml.

Well, I don't have the budget to do that. That's the simple answer. 

Ond rydych chi wedi dweud mai hwn ydy eich blaenoriaeth chi.

But you have said that this is your priority.

Ie. Felly, byddwn ni'n defnyddio'r pwerau sydd gyda ni, y pethau sydd o fewn fy nghwmpas i, sydd ddim yn mynd i gostio mwy. Dyna pam dwi'n cyfeirio, efallai, at rai o'r safonau. Er enghraifft, mae yna safon hybu gwasanaethau ar gyrff cyhoeddus. Felly, ydyn ni, tybed, yn gallu gweithio gyda nhw i sicrhau bod y safon yma yn cael ei weithredu'n well? Felly, mae hwn yn rhoi ffordd, nid yn ddi-gost—bydd yna gost iddyn nhw i'w wneud yn iawn—ond dwi'n sôn am ddefnyddio'r arfau sydd gyda fi yn y ffordd fwyaf effeithiol posibl.

Nawr, dwi ddim yn meddwl fy mod i yn y sefyllfa i benderfynu, 'O, mae angen hyrwyddo'r Gymraeg yn X, Y, Z'. Fodd bynnag, byddwn i am gefnogi—. Ac mae yna lu o fudiadau yn hyrwyddo'r Gymraeg, os yn ni'n meddwl am fudiadau sy'n gweithredu ar lawr gwlad yng Nghymru. Fe wnaf i eu henwi nhw: Mudiad Ysgolion Meithrin, efallai, ffermwyr ifanc, Merched y Wawr, yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol. Mae'r cyrff yma'n bodoli, ac mae beth dwi'n gallu gwneud i'w cefnogi nhw'n gyfyngedig, o bosibl, ond buaswn i bob amser yn teimlo bod angen i'r mudiadau yna i gyd fod yn rhan o hyrwyddo'r Gymraeg. Dyw e ddim yn fater i un corff un unig. 

Yes. So, we will use the powers that we have, the things within my scope of influence, which aren't going to cost more. That's what I'm referring to some of the standards, perhaps. For example, there is a standard for promoting services among public bodies, so I wonder whether we can work with them to ensure that that standard is better implemented. And then that gives us not a cost-free approach—there will be a cost for them to do it properly—but I'm talking about using the tools I have in the most effective way possible. 

Now, I don't think that I'm in a position to decide, 'Well, we need to promote the Welsh language in X, Y or Z'. However, I would want to support—. And there are a whole host of organisations promoting the Welsh language, if you think of the grass-roots organisations across Wales—Mudiad Ysgolion Meithrin, young farmers, the National Eisteddfod, Merched y Wawr. These bodies do exist, and what I can do to support them is limited, perhaps, but I would always feel that those organisations all need to be involved in promoting the Welsh language. It's not a matter for one body alone.

Roeddwn i'n dechrau o'ch safbwynt chi, wrth gwrs. Pan oeddech chi o'n blaen ni y llynedd, roeddech chi'n dweud eich bod chi eisiau blaenoriaethu hybu'r Gymraeg, a dwi'n credu—

I was starting from your point of view, of course. When you appeared before us last year, you said that you wanted to prioritise promotion of the Welsh language, and I think—

Ydw, ond, i fi, mae 'hybu'r Gymraeg' yn golygu defnyddio'r Gymraeg—hybu'r defnydd o'r Gymraeg.

Yes, but, to me, promoting the Welsh language means using the Welsh language—promoting its use. 

Ie, ond ddim jest yn nhermau defnydd o wasanaethau.

But not just in terms of the use of services. 

Nage, ond beth dwi'n gallu gwneud, beth sydd o fewn cwmpas fy ngwaith i, a chyllideb gyda fi i wneud. Felly, dwi'n dechrau wrth fy nhraed yw beth buaswn i'n dweud. 

No, but what I can do, or what's within my remit as commissioner, and what I have a budget to achieve. So, I'm starting at my feet, if you like. 

09:50

Ocê. Digon teg. Ac wrth ddisgrifio canlyniadau'r cyfrifiad fel canlyniadau cymhleth, mae hwnnw yn air diddorol iawn i fi achos dyw e ddim yn—. Dwi ddim cweit yn siŵr beth ŷch chi'n meddwl. 

Okay. Fair enough. And in describing the census results as complex results, that's a very interesting word for my part because it doesn't—. I'm not really sure what you mean.

Wel, mi wnaf i esbonio rhai o'r pethau dwi'n golygu. Felly, mae'r niferoedd wedi disgyn yn gyffredinol. Mae'r niferoedd yn y cadarnleoedd, sy'n bryder, wedi disgyn yn gyffredinol, ond mae yna dwf yn niferoedd y siaradwyr 18 i 36 [cywiriad: 20 i 44] ymhob ardal yng Nghymru. Dyna dwi'n golygu yw'r cymhlethdod sydd yn y ffigyrau. Ac ar ben hynny, mae cymhlethdod y wybodaeth arall rŷn ni'n casglu drwy'r holiaduron eraill.

Felly, beth dwi'n trio dweud yw ddylen ni ddim cymryd bod sefyllfa'r Gymraeg yn hollol ddu. Os oes yna gynnydd yn nifer y bobl o oedran magu teulu sy'n siarad Cymraeg, mae hynny'n rhoi gobaith i'r dyfodol. Felly, beth dwi'n trio dweud yw mai neges i ni ailymegnïo sydd yn y cyfrifiad, ac nid i ddweud, 'O, och a gwae, mae ar ben. Mae popeth rŷn ni'n gwneud yn anghywir'. Dwi ddim o'r farn bod popeth rŷn ni'n gwneud yn anghywir.

Rŷn ni wedi edrych ar effaith y cyfrifiad ar ein gwaith ni fel sefydliad. Rŷn ni wedi edrych a ddylen ni fod yn newid unrhyw elfennau o'n gwaith ni o ganlyniad i'r cyfrifiad. Y canlyniad ar y cyfan yw 'na'. Rŷn ni angen parhau i wneud beth rŷn ni'n gwneud, a dwi'n credu bod hynny'n wir am 'Cymraeg 2050' hefyd. Felly, mae yna bethau cymhleth yn y cyfrifiad ac nid un ffigwr moel yw'r cyfrifiad. Felly, mae'n dal i fod angen gwneud gwaith dadansoddi, dwi'n meddwl, ac mae yn cael ei wneud. 

Well, I'll explain some of what I mean. The figures were down generally. The numbers in the so-called heartlands have fallen, and that's a concern, but there is a growth in the number of Welsh speakers aged between 18 and 36 [correction: 20 to 44] in all areas of Wales. That's what I mean by complexity in the figures. In addition to that, there is the information that we gather through other surveys. 

So, what I'm trying to say is that we shouldn't assume that the situation of the Welsh language is entirely bleak. If there is an increase in the number of people raising children who speak Welsh, then that is positive for the future. So, we can take the message of the census as a message that we need to regenerate, not look at it as being totally bleak and to think that everything we're doing is wrong. Not everything we're doing is wrong. 

We have looked at the impact of the census on our work as an organisation. We have considered whether we should change any elements of our work as a result of the census. The upshot of that generally is that no, we shouldn't. We need to continue to do what we're currently doing and I think that's true of the 'Cymraeg 2050' strategy too. So, there are some complexities within the census and the census doesn't give us a single figure. There still needs to be some analysis done of that, and that is being done. 

Dwi'n cytuno gyda hynny, fel mae'n digwydd. Ond sut, felly, mae'r dadansoddiad rŷch chi newydd roi i ni yn dylanwadu ac yn siapio eich gwaith chi, achos mae'r rhain yn ffeithiau ac yn wybodaeth oedd ddim gyda chi pan oeddech chi o flaen y pwyllgor y llynedd?

I agree with that, as it happens. But how, then, does the analysis that you've given us influence and shape your work, because these are facts and information that you didn't have when you appeared before the committee last year?

Ie. Felly, mae e'n golygu bod angen i ni roi—. Yn y lle cyntaf mae'n cadarnhau bod angen i ni roi mwy o sylw i bobl ifanc. Mae'r cyfrifiad, wrth gwrs, yn dweud bod mwy o bobl ifanc yn siarad Cymraeg nag sydd mewn ysgolion cyfrwng Cymraeg, felly beth ŷn ni'n gwneud am y bobl yna? Mae e'n sicr—

Yes. It means that—. First of all, it confirms that we need to have more focus on young people. The census, of course, tells us that there are more young people speaking Welsh than there are young people in Welsh-medium schools, so what do we do about that cohort of people? It certainly—

So, beth ydych chi'n gwneud, felly? Beth ydych chi'n gwneud amdanyn nhw?

So, what are you doing? What are you doing about that cohort of young people?

Beth ydyn ni'n gwneud? Pobl ifanc?

What are we doing? Young people?

Ie. Rŷch chi newydd ddweud bod na fwy o blant sy'n siarad Cymraeg nag sydd mewn ysgolion Cymraeg, felly gofynnoch chi'r cwestiwn, 'Beth ydyn ni'n gwneud amdanyn nhw?' Roeddwn i jest yn gofyn i chi ateb y cwestiwn hefyd. 

Yes. You've just said that there are more young people who speak Welsh than are in Welsh-medium schools, and so you asked the question, 'What are we doing about those young people?' I just wanted you to answer that question also. 

Ie, yn union. Iawn. Ocê. Er enghraifft, mae cyhoeddi adroddiad ar anghenion dysgu ychwanegol plant a phobl ifanc yn arwydd pwysig o'r gwaith rŷn ni'n gwneud i sicrhau bod plant a phobl ifanc yn gallu parhau i siarad Cymraeg wrth dderbyn eu haddysg nhw. Mae'r ffeithiau a'r wybodaeth sydd gyda ni yn dangos yn ddiamheuol nad yw'r sefyllfa bresennol yn dderbyniol.

Does dim digon o addysg ar gyfer plant ag anghenion dysgu ychwanegol ar gael yn Gymraeg. Felly, os nad ydyn ni'n rhoi cyfle iddyn nhw gael eu haddysg yn Gymraeg, mae nifer o bethau'n digwydd. Mae'r rhieni'n dewis addysg cyfrwng Saesneg cyn mynd i'r sector addysg cyfrwng Cymraeg, felly maen nhw'n cael eu hamddifadu o allu siarad y Gymraeg. Mae yna sefyllfaoedd lle mae pobl yn newid cyfrwng eu haddysg wrth fynd drwy addysg gan fod llai a llai o ddarpariaeth wrth iddyn nhw fynd yn hŷn. Felly, mae hon, dwi'n credu, yn enghraifft bwysig o lle dwi'n blaenoriaethu plant a phobl ifanc ac eisiau sicrhau eu bod nhw'n parhau i allu siarad Cymraeg, a dyw'r sefyllfa bresennol ddim yn dderbyniol. 

Yes, exactly. Okay. For example, the publication of a report on the additional learning needs of children and young people is an important part of the work that we do in ensuring that children and young people can continue to use the Welsh language when they're receiving their education. The facts and the information that we have show without doubt that the current situation is not acceptable.

There isn't enough additional learning needs education available through the medium of Welsh. So, if we don't give them the opportunity to have their education through the medium of Welsh, a number of things happen. Parents choose English-medium education before approaching the Welsh system, so they're deprived of the ability to speak Welsh. There are scenarios where people change the medium of their education as they progress because there is less and less provision as their children get older. So, I think this is an important example around prioritising children and young people and seeking to ensure that they can continue to speak Welsh, and the current situation is not acceptable. 

Beth ydw i'n gallu gwneud am hynny? Dwi'n gallu cyhoeddi adroddiad. Dwi'n gallu trefnu cyfarfodydd, ond dyw'r grym i newid hynny—. Mae angen i bobl eraill weithredu.

Now, what I can do about that? Well, I can publish a report. I can arrange meetings, but as to the power to change that, others need to act. 

Ac ydych chi yn trafod gweithredu gydag eraill? Dwi'n cymryd eich bod chi'n sôn am Lywodraeth Cymru.

And do you discuss the actions that need to be taken with others? I take it that you're talking about the Welsh Government.

Ie, a Chymdeithas Lywodraeth Leol Cymru. Felly, ydyn. 

Yes, the Welsh Government and the Welsh Local Government Association.

A beth ydy canlyniadau'r trafodaethau? 

And what are the results of those discussions?

Rŷn ni'n dal wrthi yn trafod, ond rŷn ni'n dal i fod angen rhoi pwysau. Mae'r maes yn heriol. 

Those discussions are ongoing, but we need to continue to keep the pressure up. It's a challenging area.

Dwi'n cytuno gyda chi a dylwn i ddweud bod gen i fuddiannau yno. Ond efallai, Cadeirydd, fod hynny'n rhywbeth rŷn ni'n gallu dychwelyd ato fe mewn sesiwn wahanol. 

I agree with you and I should say that I have interests there. But perhaps, Chair, this is something that we can return to in another session.

Buaswn i'n croesawu hynny'n fawr. 

I would warmly welcome that. 

Diolch am hwnna, Alun. Cyn i ni symud ymlaen, o ran hybu'r iaith, faint o arian ydych chi ei angen er mwyn gwneud y gwaith yna? Dwi'n gwybod bod hwnna'n rhywbeth anodd i'w fesur, ond sut fyddech chi'n mesur hynny?

Thank you for that, Alun. Before we move on, in terms of promoting the use of the language, how much funding do you require in order to do that work? I know that's very difficult to quantify, but how would you go about quantifying that?

09:55

Wel, petaswn i'n dweud wrthych chi, yn fy nghyllideb i, fod gen i £150,000 ar gyfer gwariant rhaglen sy'n cynnwys cynnal geiriadur, sy'n cynnwys presenoldeb mewn sioeau, sy'n cynnwys ein gwaith marchnata ni, rŷch chi'n gallu gweld yn fuan iawn fod y math o symiau sydd gyda fi'n rhydd i wneud unrhyw waith sylweddol yn fychan iawn, iawn. Felly, faint o arian fydden i'n hoffi ei gael? Mae hwnna'n rhy anodd i'w ateb, a bod yn onest. 

If I were to tell you that, as part of my budget, I have £150,000 for programme expenditure, which includes supporting a dictionary, attendance at shows and our marketing work, you can see very quickly that the kinds of sums I have available to do any substantial work are very small indeed. So, how much money would I like to have? Well, that's a question that's too difficult to answer, if I'm honest. 

Ond mae'r symiau sydd gyda fi yn fychan iawn, iawn. 

But the amounts that I have are very small indeed. 

Ocê. Diolch am hynna. Fe wnawn ni symud ymlaen at Carolyn Thomas. 

Okay. Thank you very much for that. We'll move on to Carolyn Thomas. 

—please respond in Welsh; that's fine, I'll use my headphones. I'm just going to ask you some questions regarding financial accountability. So, I read in your report that you've bought a new case management system for £243,000. I just want to explore the value for money for it—what it's going to be used for. I've read that it's going to be in operation this year, so how will it help, really, through the benefits?

Dwi'n falch iawn eich bod chi'n codi'r cwestiwn, ond dwi ddim yn hapus gyda'r atebion sydd gyda fi i roi i chi. Fe gofiwch chi, efallai, fod swyddfa'r comisiynydd wedi dioddef ymosodiad seiber rai blynyddoedd yn ôl. Felly, mae buddsoddi mewn diogelwch seiber, ar hyn o bryd, yn flaenoriaeth i ni, ac rŷn ni wedi derbyn achrediad Cyber Essentials Plus, ac yn gweithio tuag at IASME Governance ar hyn o bryd. Ac mae'r sefydliad yn rhoi pwyslais cywir, dwi'n credu, ar sicrhau na fydd unrhyw beth tebyg yn digwydd eto, oherwydd pan fydd rhywbeth fel yna'n digwydd, dwi'n credu ei fod e'n cael impact am rai blynyddoedd, mewn gwirionedd, ar waith sefydliad. 

Cyn yr ymosodiad seiber, mi oedd gan y sefydliad system weddol syml, dwi'n credu, i ddelio gydag achosion a project management, customer relationship management, achosion o gŵyn ac ymchwilio. Felly, yn dilyn yr ymosodiad, gwnaed lot o waith sgopio. Cafwyd lot o gyngor o lot o lefydd. Trafodwyd nifer o opsiynau gwahanol, ac fe gomisiynwyd, am y swm rŷch chi'n sôn amdano, waith meddalwedd, wedi'i seilio ar system Dynamics. Mi oedd y system yma i fod, yn wreiddiol, i'w gyflwyno i ni ym mis Hydref 2022 i'w brofi. Cafodd hynny ei fwrw ymlaen i Chwefror 2023, ac mae'n flin gyda fi i rannu gyda chi ein bod ni'n dal mewn sefyllfa lle dŷn ni ddim yn gallu defnyddio'r system ar hyn o bryd. Mae yna waith mireinio pellach i'w wneud. Rŷn ni yn y broses, ar hyn o bryd, o gael cyngor arbenigol pellach i'n cynghori ni ar yr hyn sydd angen digwydd nesaf. Mae yna elfennau o'r system rŷn ni'n gallu eu defnyddio, ond dyw'r system yn ei chyfanrwydd ddim yn barod eto i ni ei defnyddio. 

Y bwriad yw—ac mae angen y system—. Ar hyn o bryd, mae'n swyddogion ni'n defnyddio system manual o gofnodi achosion, tracio achosion. Mae'n gweithio—mae'r system yn gweithio. Y bwriad yw, pan fydd hwn yn ei le—felly, rŷn ni'n gobeithio y bydd e, dros y cyfnod nesaf, yn datblygu ymhellach ac yn gallu cael ei roi mewn lle—y bydd hynny'n rhyddhau adnoddau staff i wneud gwaith mwy diddorol.

Rŷn ni wedi cael ein cynghori gan Lywodraeth Cymru yn y mater yma ac rŷn ni'n ddiolchgar iawn, iawn iddyn nhw am eu cyngor. Felly, mae e'n fater lle nad yw'r gwaith sydd wedi'n cyrraedd ni ar hyn o bryd yn cael ei ddefnyddio. Felly, rŷn ni mewn cyfnod, ychydig bach, o orfod gwneud gwaith datblygu pellach, a dŷn ni ddim yn gwybod yn union beth yw hyd a lled y gwaith datblygu pellach ar hyn o bryd. 

I'm delighted that you have raised that issue, but I'm not happy with the answers that I have for you. You will recall, perhaps, that the commissioner's office suffered a cyber attack some years ago. So, investment in cyber security is a priority for us at the moment, and we've received the Cyber Essentials Plus accreditation, and we're working towards IASME Governance at the moment. And the organisation is putting a proper emphasis on ensuring that something similar can't happen again, because when something like that does happen, I think it has an impact for some years on the work of an organisation. 

Before the cyber attack, we did have quite a simple system in dealing with casework and project management, customer relationship management, and complaints and enquiries. So, following that cyber attack, a lot of scoping work was done, we took a lot of advice from a number of different sources, and a number of different options were considered. And we commissioned, for the sum that you mentioned, some software work, which was based on the Dynamics system. This system originally was to be introduced in October 2022 for testing. That was knocked back to February 2023, and I'm sorry to tell you that we're still in a position where we can't use the system. There is some further refinement to be done. We are currently in the process of taking further specialist advice on what needs to happen next. There are elements of the system that we can use, but the system as a whole is not yet ready for us to use. 

Now, the intention is—and we do need the system—. Our officials are currently using manual systems of recording cases and tracking them, and it does work—the system works. The intention is that when this is properly in place—and we do hope that it will be developed further over coming months and can be put in place—that will then release staffing resources to do more interesting work.

We have been advised by the Welsh Government on this issue, and we're very grateful to them for that advice. So, it is an area where the work that's been done to date is not being fully used, so we're in a period now where we have to do further developmental work, and we're not exactly sure what the scope of that work is at the moment. 

Carolyn, fyddech chi'n meindio os dwi jest yn gofyn rhywbeth yn gyflym?

Carolyn, would you mind if I just ask a quick question?

Just quickly. 

Faint yn fwy rŷch chi'n meddwl fydd y gost o hynny?

How much more do you think that will cost?

Dŷn ni ddim yn gwybod. 

We don't know. 

Dŷn ni ddim yn gwybod. Oherwydd natur y contract, mae'n dechnegol, ond mae yna bethau yn ymwneud â natur y contract sydd ddim yn—. Wyt ti eisiau esbonio, Lowri? Na. Mae'n anodd esbonio. Does dim byd llawer mwy i'w esbonio, heblaw dydy'r gwaith ddim yn orffenedig ar ddiwedd y contract. A doedd e ddim wedi ei fwriadu i fod yn orffenedig ar ddiwedd y contract, oherwydd natur y contract. Felly, mi oedd yna wastad gwaith datblygu pellach a mireinio i'w wneud, ond rŷn ni mewn trafodaethau ar hyn o bryd ynglŷn â hynny.

We don't know. Because of the nature of the contract, it's very technical, but there are things related to the nature of the contract—. Would you like to explain, Lowri? No. It's difficult to explain. There's not much more I can say, other than that the work is not complete at the end of the contract. And it was never intended to be completed at the end of the contract, because of the nature of that contract. So, there was always further refinement to be undertaken, but we are in discussion at the moment on that.

10:00

Diolch. You're looking at rationalising the estate, which I personally commend, down from—I think it was four offices down to just one.

Na. Ydych chi eisiau i fi esbonio?

No. Would you like me to explain?

Felly, mi oedd gyda ni bedair swyddfa—Caernarfon, Rhuthun, Caerfyrddin a Chaerdydd. Mae'r swyddfa yng Nghaerfyrddin bellach wedi'i chau a'r gweithwyr yn weithwyr cartref ond gydag anogaeth i gwrdd a defnyddio cyfleusterau desgiau poeth Yr Egin, er enghraifft. Mae swyddfa Caerdydd yn mynd i symud yn y ddeufis nesaf, a byddwn ni hefyd yn ymgynghori â staff, a'r bwriad yw cau'r swyddfa yn Rhuthun erbyn diwedd mis Mawrth. Felly, fe fydd gyda ni ddwy swyddfa, yng Nghaernarfon ac yng Nghaerdydd, ar ddiwedd hynny, ond bydd yr arbedion costau i'r sefydliad yn sylweddol iawn—mwy nag £80,000—felly mae hynny i'w groesawu, dwi'n credu.

So, we did have four offices—Caernarfon, Ruthin, Carmarthen and Cardiff. The office in Carmarthen now has closed, and the employees are homeworkers but with encouragement to meet and to use hot-desking facilities in Yr Egin, for example. The Cardiff office is going to move in the next two months, and we will also be consulting with staff, and the intention is to close the office in Ruthin by the end of March. So, we'll have two offices, in Caernarfon and Cardiff, at the end of that period, but the cost savings for the organisation will be significant—more than £80,000—so that is to be welcomed, I think.

Okay, thank you. So, you're looking at hot desking within the Welsh Government's office.

Na. Mae yna lawr yn CP2, sydd—. Nid swyddfeydd y Llywodraeth ydyn nhw. Mae yn adeilad Llywodraeth Cymru, ond mae yna lawr—[Torri ar draws.] Dŷn ni ddim yn eistedd drws nesaf i swyddogion Llywodraeth Cymru. Mae yna lawr ar gyfer cyrff yn y sector cyhoeddus, gan gynnwys yr Asiantaeth Safonau Bwyd a Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru, felly byddwn ni'n rhentu gofod—nid hot desking gymaint â gofod penodol i ni o fewn y swyddfa honno.

No. There is a floor in CP2—. They're not Government offices. It's a Welsh Government building, but there is a floor—[Interruption.] We don't sit next door to Welsh Government officials. There is a floor available for public sector bodies, including the Food Standards Agency, Natural Resources Wales and so on, so we'll be renting a space—not a hot-desk arrangement, but a specific space for us in that building.

Okay, thank you, because my further question was about the independence, you know, of Welsh Government—

Wel, wrth gwrs, mae hynny yn hollbwysig i fi. Trwy'r symudiad yma, rŷn ni'n arbed llawer mwy o arian nag o rentu unrhyw swyddfeydd eraill, ac fe wnaethom ni fynd trwy'r ymarfer yna. Rŷn ni ar lawr ar wahân i swyddogion Llywodraeth Cymru, â system pàs sy'n golygu allwn ni ddim crwydro i swyddfeydd ein gilydd o gwbl.

Well, of course, that is crucial for me. Through this shift, we are saving a great deal more money than renting any other offices, and we went through that exercise. We are on a separate floor to Welsh Government officials and have a pass system that means that we can't wander into the Welsh Government offices and they can't come into ours.

Okay. And lastly, just regarding reserves, just if you could expand on the amount of reserves you have. Previously it was said it was prudent to maintain 5 per cent of the annual budget, but current reserves, as of March 2023, stood at £165,000, which isn't very much.

Wel, does dim hawl gyda ni i gadw arian wrth gefn. Newidiodd hynny yn dilyn Deddf a basiwyd gan Senedd ar parliamentary supply o fewn fframwaith rheoli arian cyhoeddus y Deyrnas Unedig. Felly, mi oedden ni'n gallu cario a chadw arian wrth gefn. Erbyn hyn, dydyn ni ddim. Mi wnaf i dynnu eich sylw chi, efallai; mi oedd hyn yn fater o bryder pan ddaeth hyn i rym, oherwydd y ffaith ein bod ni weithiau angen arian ychwanegol ar gyfer ymgymryd ag achosion llys. Fodd bynnag, rwy'n credu bod gennym ni lythyr ar ffeil gan Lywodraeth Cymru sy'n dweud pe bydden ni yn y sefyllfa o gyrraedd diwedd blwyddyn ariannol ac ein bod ni angen cyllid ychwanegol, y bydden nhw'n rhoi ystyriaeth lawn i hynny, ac mae gyda ni enghraifft o hynny wedi digwydd yn effeithiol. Felly, ar hyn o bryd, does gyda ni ddim pryderon am hynny.

Well, we don't have a right to hold reserves. That changed following an Act passed by Parliament on parliamentary supply, which was passed by the UK Parliament. So, we were able to hold reserves. We're now not. I will draw your attention to the fact that this was a cause of concern when this came into force, because of the fact that we sometimes do need additional funds for undertaking legal action. But I do think that we have a letter on file from Welsh Government, which says that, if we were in a situation where we reached the end of the financial year and we needed additional funding, they would give full consideration to providing that, and we do have an example of that where it worked effectively. So, at the moment, we have no concerns about that.

Diolch am hynny. Diolch. Jest yn gyflym, i fynd yn ôl at y sefyllfa gyda, wel, nid rhannu swyddfa ond y swyddfeydd y byddwch chi ynddyn nhw, oes yna gyrff eraill sydd efallai mewn sefyllfa gyfatebol rydych chi eisiau dysgu o'u profiad nhw, neu ydych chi wedi cael barn am sut i wneud yn siŵr eich bod chi nid dim ond yn annibynnol ond eich bod chi'n cael eich gweld yn annibynnol?

Thank you for that. Thank you. Just briefly, to return to the situation with, well, not sharing the offices, but the offices that you will be using, are there any other bodies that are perhaps in an equivalent situation, where you would want to learn from their experience, or have you had a view on how you ensure that you're not just independent but that you're seen to be independent?

Wel, fel mae'n digwydd, mae Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru yn yr union yr un sefyllfa â ni yn yr ystyr eu bod nhw hefyd yn rheoleiddio Llywodraeth Cymru. Mae Archwilio Cymru, fel dwi'n deall, hefyd mewn sefyllfa debyg gyda swyddfeydd yn Llandudno, felly mae hyn yn drafodaeth yn ein plith ni, ond dwi'n meddwl bod yr arbedion o ran arian ac, i fod yn deg, cyfleusterau'r swyddfa a safon y swyddfeydd i'n gweithwyr ni—. Dwi'n meddwl ein bod ni'n gallu rhoi digon o gamau mewn lle i sicrhau ein hannibyniaeth ni.

Well, as it happens, Natural Resources Wales is in exactly the same situation as us in the sense that they also regulate Welsh Government. Now Audit Wales, as I understand it, is in a similar situation with offices in Llandudno, so this is an ongoing discussion amongst us, but I do think that the financial savings and, to be fair, the facilities available and the quality of the office space for our staff—. I do think that we can put the necessary steps in place to secure our independence.

10:05

Diolch am hynna. Yn fyr, mae Alun eisiau dod i mewn ar hyn hefyd.

Thank you for that. Briefly, Alun wants to come in on that.

Dwi'n teimlo'n anghyfforddus gyda hynny, mae'n rhaid bod yn hollol glir gyda chi, comisiynydd. Dwi'n gweld beth dŷch chi'n ei ddweud, ond dyw pwrpas eich swydd ddim jest i achub arian—

I feel uncomfortable with that, to be honest with you, commissioner. I see what you are saying, but the purpose of your office isn't just to save money—

Wel, rwyt ti newydd fod yn gofyn i fi wario arian a buddsoddi arian mewn pethau eraill.

Well, you've just been asking me to spend elsewhere and to invest elsewhere.

Ond hefyd, mae'n rhaid ichi fod yn atebol i ni am y penderfyniadau rŷch chi'n eu gwneud. A dwi'n dweud wrthych chi fy mod i'n anghyfforddus gyda hynny. Dwi ddim wedi dweud fy mod i'n ei wrthwynebu fe, dwi'n dweud fy mod i'n anghyfforddus gyda hynny a dwi eisiau ystyried hynny'n bellach. Oherwydd mae'n anodd pan—. Rwy'n deall y sefyllfa; mae gennym ni sefyllfa yn Nhŷ Hywel ble mae gan y Llywodraeth swyddfeydd fan hyn. Ond rwy'n becso bod yna—. Dwi ddim eisiau gweld perthynas cosy rhyngoch chi a'r Llywodraeth—

But you also have to be accountable to us for the decisions you make. And I'm saying that I'm uncomfortable with that. I don't say that I oppose it, but I'm telling you that I feel uncomfortable with it and I want to consider that further. Because it is difficult when—. I understand the situation; we have a situation in Tŷ Hywel where the Government has offices there. But I'm concerned that there is—. I don't want to see a cosy relationship between you and the Welsh Government—

Dwi eisiau gweld bod yna bellter a thyndra pwysig rhwng rheoleiddwyr a'r Llywodraeth. Dwi'n credu bod hynny'n beth bwysig. Nawr—

I want to see that there is distance in terms of that important tension between regulators and Government. I think that's something that's important to maintain. Now—

Dwi'n meddwl os ŷch chi'n edrych ar ein track record ni o ran archwiliadau, byddwch chi'n gweld ein bod ni'n ddigon parod i roi ein barn.

I think if you look at our track record in terms of audits, you will see that we are happy to challenge.

Ie, ie, ond dwi eisiau bennu fy mrawddeg hefyd. Ond rwyf yn meddwl bod angen—yn arbennig mewn gwledydd llai, lle rŷn ni'n tueddi adnabod ein gilydd yn well na, dweud, dros y ffin—dwi yn meddwl bod angen i ni feddwl amboutu'r ffordd dŷn ni'n gweithredu. So, dwi yn meddwl, fel pwyllgor, y dylem ni ystyried hyn yn bellach. Ond cariwch ymlaen am nawr.

Yes, but I just want to finish my point. I do think, particularly in smaller nations, where we do tend to know each other better than perhaps over the border, that we need to think about the way that we operate. So, I think, as a committee, we should be considering this further. But do continue.

Yr unig beth y buaswn i'n tynnu'ch sylw chi ato yw beth mae hyn yn ei olygu, i raddau, yw ein bod ni nawr â'n prif swyddfa ni yng Nghaernarfon, sef rhywbeth dwi, yn bersonol, yn croesawu'n fawr o ran arwyddion cyhoeddus. Dwi ddim yn byw yng Nghaernarfon. Mae Lowri yn gweithio o'r swyddfa yng Nghaernarfon. Ein prif swyddfa ni, bellach, fydd Caernarfon a dwi'n meddwl bod hynny'n bwysig iawn o ran natur y corff.

The only thing I would highlight is that what this means, to a certain extent, is that we now have our main office in Caernarfon, which is something that I warmly welcome in terms of public services. I don't live in Caernarfon. Lowri works in the office in Caernarfon. So, our main office will be in Caernarfon and I think that's very important in terms of the nature of the organisation.

Does gen i ddim problem gyda hynny. Ond dwi'n credu bod—

I don't have a problem with that. But I think—

A dweud y gwir, mae mwyafrif y staff yn gweithio hefyd o'r swyddfa yng Nghaernarfon.

And to be honest, most of the staff work from Caernarfon too.

—e'n briodol i'r pwyllgor ystyried beth dŷch chi wedi'i ddweud wrthym ni.

—it's appropriate for the committee to understand what you've just told us.

Dwi'n derbyn y pwynt. Yn amlwg, rŷn ni wedi cynnal y trafodaethau yma ein hunain, ond wedi dod i'r casgliad, yn y sefyllfa eithriadol yma o gyni ariannol, ein bod ni angen defnyddio'n harian i hyrwyddo'r Gymraeg lle rŷn ni'n gallu.

I accept that point. Clearly, we've had these discussions ourselves, but have come to the conclusion that, given this exceptional situation of financial hardship, we need to use our money to promote the Welsh language where we can.

Ie, ond mae sut dŷch chi'n gweithredu'n bwysig hefyd.

Yes, but how you operate is important too.

Oce. Ac i symud ymlaen at hawliau siaradwyr Cymraeg, dŷch chi wedi tynnu sylw at y ffaith bod gostyngiad wedi bod yn nifer y bobl sydd yn dewis defnyddio'r Gymraeg gyda chyrff cyhoeddus o'i gymharu â chyn y pandemig. Ydych chi'n gallu ymhelaethu bach ar hynna, plîs?

Okay. To move on to the rights of Welsh speakers, you've drawn attention to the fact that there's been a decrease in the number of people who choose to use the Welsh language with public bodies as compared to the period before the pandemic. Could you expand on that a little, please?

Beth rŷn ni'n gallu ei ddweud yw, o'r arolygon barn, mae llai yn dweud eu bod nhw'n ei defnyddio; dyw'r dystiolaeth ddim mor glir gan y cyrff eu hunain. Ond, serch hynny, dŷn ni ddim yn gwybod y rheswm. Rŷn ni yn gwybod, yn ystod y pandemig, roedd pobl wedi peidio â chwyno am bethau y byddan nhw fel arfer yn cwyno amdanyn nhw, gan gymryd bod pethau pwysicach gan bobl i ddelio â nhw. Felly, petasech chi'n gofyn i fi am fy asesiad, dwi'n meddwl mai dyna fyddwn i'n dod i'r casgliad amdano fe. Felly, mae gwaith pwysig i'w wneud nawr i ni sicrhau bod gwasanaethau ar gael yn ddiofyn yn y lle cyntaf. Dwi wir yn meddwl taw hwnna yw'r ffordd hawsaf o gynyddu gwasanaethau: os yw'r gwasanaeth yn ddiofyn. Os taw, 'Helo, bore da' rŷch chi'n cael ar y ffôn, gwnewch chi ateb yn Gymraeg, ond os oes rhywun yn eich cyfarch chi, 'Good morning', beth, fel person naturiol, ydych chi'n mynd i'w ddweud? Felly, mae yna waith, yn sicr, i'w wneud, ond mae'n amlwg bod yna rywbeth wedi digwydd yn y pandemig o ran disgwyliadau pobl a'u harferion nhw.

What I can say is that, from the surveys, fewer say that they use the services; the evidence isn't as clear from the bodies themselves. However, we don't know the reason for that. We do know that, during the pandemic, people tended not to complain about things that they would usually have complained about, perhaps because people had more important things to deal with. So, if you were to ask me for my assessment, I think that's the conclusion I would come to. So, there is important work to be done now in order to ensure that services are available by default. I do really think that that is the easiest way to enhance services: if the service is available by default. If it's, 'Helo, bore da' you hear, then you will respond in Welsh, but if someone greets you with, 'Good morning', then what would you say? So, there is certainly work to be done, but it's clear that something happened during the pandemic in terms of people's expectations and their habits.

Ie. Diolch. Mae yna dystiolaeth wedi bod yn y gorffennol fod pobl yng Nghymru'n llai tebygol o gwyno yn y lle cyntaf, felly, mae'r pandemig efallai wedi gwneud hwnna hyd yn oed yn fwy o beth. Felly, byddwn ni'n cadw golwg ar hynny hefyd. O edrych, eto, ar yr arolwg, mae un o bob pump o bobl wedi cael eu hatal rhag defnyddio'r Gymraeg yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf. Sut byddwch chi'n defnyddio'ch pwerau chi i fynd i'r afael â'r broblem yna, achos mae hwnna'n teimlo fel—?

Yes. Thank you. There has been evidence in the past that people in Wales are less likely to complain in the first instance, so perhaps the pandemic has made that an even more prominent tendency. So, we'll keep an eye on that. Again, in terms of looking at the survey, one in five of those who responded reported that they've been prevented from using the Welsh language in the past year. How will you use your powers to try to tackle that issue, because that feels like a major issue?

I fi, mi oedd hwnna'n syfrdanol o ffigur. Mae o wedi dod o arolwg barn, felly, rŷn ni am wneud ychydig bach mwy o ymchwil cyn cynllunio beth rŷn ni wir yn mynd i allu gwneud amdano fe. Mae yna bwerau o dan y Mesur o ran ein gallu i ymchwilio i ymyraethau i ryddid pobl i siarad, ond, wrth gwrs, mae hwnna'n broses beichus a phwy sy'n mynd i wneud hynny, wir, oni bai ei fod e'n broblemus iawn? Ond mae'n teimlo fel, o'r wybodaeth ansoddol ddaeth o'r arolwg fod pobl yn aml yn dioddef o sefyllfa lle, os ŷn nhw ar fws, pobl ifanc ar fws—'Don't speak that language,' y fath yna o sylwadau. Dyna beth rŷn ni'n gallu ei gasglu o'r wybodaeth. Felly, y cam cyntaf i ni yw gwneud ychydig bach yn fwy o ymchwil, ac mae hynny ar waith, i ddarganfod ydy hwn yn rhywbeth cyffredin iawn. Mae'r arolwg barn yn awgrymu ei fod e'n fwy nag roeddwn ni i gyd yn ei feddwl, achos efallai ei fod e ddim yn digwydd i bobl fel fi, ond mae'n amlwg ei fod e'n brofiad cyffredin.

Beth ydyn ni'n gallu ei wneud amdano fe? Beth dwi'n gallu ei wneud amdano fe neu beth ydyn ni i gyd yn gallu ei wneud amdano fe? Mae yna dal waith i'w wneud, felly, ar newid agweddau. Fe ddywedais i ar y dechrau fod arweinwyr y sector gyhoeddus ag agweddau cadarnhaol iawn tuag at y Gymraeg—ydy'r rheini wedi treiddio trwy'r gymdeithas i gyd? Efallai nad yw e ddim cymaint ag y bydden ni i gyd yn ei hoffi. Felly dwi'n meddwl unwaith y cawn ni'r ychydig bach yn fwy o ymchwil y byddwn ni ar dir mwy cadarn i ystyried beth allwn ni ei wneud yn fwy yn y maes yma, a phobl eraill ei wneud yn fwy.

For me, that was a shocking figure. The information came from a survey, so we do want to conduct a little more research before planning our response to it. There are powers under the Measure where we can carry out inquiries into people's freedom to use the Welsh language, but, of course, that's a burdensome process and who's really going to do that unless it's a very real problem? But, from the qualitative information that came from the survey, people often suffer from comments such as, 'Don't speak that language,' on a bus, and that happens to young people. That's what we've gathered from the information. So, what we need to do now is to do a little more research, and that is ongoing, to find out whether this is a common issue. The survey suggests that it's a greater problem than we had thought, because perhaps it doesn't happen to people like me, but it clearly is a common experience.

What can we do about it? What can I do about it or what can we all do about it? There is still work to be done on changing attitudes. I said at the outset that leaders in the public sector have very positive attitudes towards the Welsh language—has that permeated through the whole of society? Well, perhaps not, not as much as we would all want to see, perhaps. So, I think, once we get that additional research, we'll be on firmer ground in considering what we can do in this area, and what others can do also.

10:10

Jest i ychwanegu, mae yna ambell i beth arall hefyd dŷn ni wedi ei wneud. Yn amlwg, dŷn ni'n gweld pwysigrwydd gweithio gydag undebau llafur, felly dŷn ni wedi gweithio hefo Cyngres yr Undebau Llafur, er enghraifft, i greu pamffled i fod yn codi ymwybyddiaeth o'r hawl i siarad Cymraeg yn y gweithle, achos, wrth gwrs, mae yna safonau penodol yn ymwneud â gallu gweithio trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg.

Gwnaethom ni, fel rhan o'r gwaith ddylanwadu ar y Ddeddf Partneriaeth Gymdeithasol a Chaffael Cyhoeddus (Cymru) 2023, drio gwthio'r pwynt fod gallu gweithio trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg a gallu hyfforddi ac yn y blaen i fod yn datblygu sgiliau yn rhan greiddiol o waith teg. Dŷn ni'n gobeithio yn fuan cael sgwrs gyda'r Dirprwy Weinidog Partneriaeth Gymdeithasol i fod yn trafod gwaith y cyngor partneriaeth gymdeithasol a sut mae'r canllawiau a'r cod arfaethedig fydd yn dod gan Weinidogion ond yn cael ei drafod gyda'r cyngor partneriaeth yn gallu rhoi sylw i'r rhyddid i ddefnyddio'r Gymraeg a phwysigrwydd gallu siarad Cymraeg yn y gwaith, felly.

Just to add, there are some other pieces of work that we've done. Clearly, we've see the importance of working with trade unions, so we've worked with the Trades Union Congress, for example, to create a pamphlet to raise awareness of the right to speak Welsh in the workplace, because there are specific standards related to being able to work through the medium of Welsh.

As part of the influencing work on the Social Partnership and Public Procurement (Wales) Act 2023, we tried to push the point that being able to work through the medium of Welsh and being able to train through the medium of Welsh to develop skills is a core part of fair work. We are hoping very soon to have a discussion with the Deputy Minister for Social Partnership to discuss the work of the social partnership council, how the proposed guidance and code that will be put forward by Ministers and discussed by the partnership council will be able to give due attention to the freedom to use the Welsh language and the importance of being able to speak Welsh in the workplace too.

Diolch, mae hwnna'n ddefnyddiol. Diolch. Ac yn olaf gen i ar hyn o bryd, mae'r adroddiad yn sôn am rai achosion penodol mewn awdurdodau lleol lle mae rhai unigolion wedi cael eu hatal rhag defnyddio'r Gymraeg. Ydych chi'n meddwl bod hwnna'n mynd yn fwy o broblem fel patrwm, neu sut ydych chi wedi ffeindio hwnna?

Thank you, that's very useful. Thank you. And finally from me for the moment, the report talked about some specific cases in local authorities where some individuals have been prevented from using the Welsh language. Do you think that this is becoming more of a problem or a trend in that sector, or how have you analysed that?

Fy nghasgliad i o'r dystiolaeth sydd o fy mlaen i yw bod y broblem mewn cymdeithas yn y llefydd anffurfiol yn hytrach na—. Does dim tystiolaeth gyda fi bod hyn yn broblem fawr mewn gweithleoedd. Mae yna enghreifftiau unigol, ond mae'r arolwg fel pe bai e'n awgrymu ei fod e'n digwydd mewn coridor coleg neu ar fws neu mewn sefyllfaoedd mwy anffurfiol. Felly, does dim pryder penodol gyda fi am weithleoedd, mewn gwirionedd. Ond, wrth gwrs, os oes yna achosion, rŷn ni'n gallu ymchwilio a darparu cyngor.

My conclusion from the evidence I have is that the problem is a societal one, in those informal settings. I have no evidence that this is a major problem in workplaces. There are individual examples, yes, but the survey seems to suggest that it happens in a college corridor or on a bus or in more informal circumstances. So, I don't have a specific concern about workplaces. But, of course, if there are cases, then we can investigate and provide advice.

Ocê. Diolch am hynna. Fe wnawn ni symud ymlaen at Llyr Gruffydd.

Okay. Thank you for that. We'll move on to Llyr Gruffydd.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Yn eich adroddiad blynyddol rŷch chi'n nodi eich bod chi wedi gosod hysbysiadau cydymffurfio i wneud rhestr o safonau y mae'r Senedd wedi ei phasio yn benodol gymwys i dros 125 o gyrff. Nawr, ar y dechrau, efallai, doedd rhai ddim yn gallu cyrraedd y safonau uchaf, efallai; roedd yna rai eithriadau, os dwi'n cofio'n iawn. Oes yna felly broses o adolygu hysbysiadau cydymffurfiaeth sydd eisoes wedi cael eu gosod er mwyn cynyddu'r disgwyliadau dros amser, ac, os oes e, ar sawl achlysur mae hynny wedi digwydd?

Thank you very much. In your annual report, you note that you have set compliance notices on a list of standards that the Senedd has passed applicable to over 125 bodies. Now, at the beginning, some, perhaps, weren't able to meet the highest standards, perhaps; there were some exceptions, if I remember correctly. Is there, therefore, a process of reviewing compliance notices that have already been set to increase the requirements over time, and, if so, on how many occasions has that happened?

Mae hwnna'n gwestiwn manwl iawn.

That's a very detailed question.

Wel, dwi'n berson sy'n lico manylion. [Chwerthin.]

I do like to look at the minutiae. [Laughter.]

Reit, fy nealltwriaeth i yw bod y comisiynydd wedi gwneud pob ymdrech i osod cyn gymaint o safonau ag mae'n gallu yn rhesymol. Felly, dwi ddim yn meddwl, o fy nealltwriaeth i, fod yna lawer iawn o eithriadau wedi bod. Wrth osod safonau, mae sefydliadau yn gallu cyflwyno rhesymau dros beidio â gosod safon arnyn nhw. Yn fy mhrofiad diweddar i, yn sicr, rydym ni'n gwneud ein gorau i beidio â chytuno i'r rheini, ond weithiau yn rhoi cyfnod estynedig iddyn nhw gyrraedd y safon. Dyna fy mhrofiad diweddar i.

O ran mynd nôl ac adolygu, dwi ddim yn siŵr beth fyddai'r broses am hynny. Dwi'n meddwl, yn gyffredinol, fod y mwyafrif o'r safonau wedi eu gosod ar y mwyafrif o gyrff, y rhai rydym ni'n gallu. Beth sydd yn digwydd yn achlysurol, ac yn fy mhrofiad i, unwaith neu ddwywaith y flwyddyn, yw bod sefydliad yn dod atom ni â her am safon sydd wedi ei osod, gan ddweud, 'Dyw hwn ddim yn ymarferol am y rhesymau yma,' ac wedyn rydym ni'n ystyried yr her yna. Mae hynny'n gallu codi. Fel arfer, mae yna resymau eithriadol o dda, felly weithiau—weithiau—mae yna safon yn cael ei amrywio, ond mae yna reswm penodol iawn am hynny, ond yn fy mhrofiad i, mi alla i feddwl am un ers i fi gychwyn.

My understanding is that the commissioner has made every effort to impose as many standards as possible in a reasonable way. I don't think, from my understanding, that there have been very many exceptions. In setting standards, organisations can provide reasons why a standard shouldn't be imposed on them. In my recent experience, we do our best not to agree to those, but we do perhaps give them an extended period to achieve that standard. That's my recent experience.

In terms of review, I'm not sure what the process for that would be. I think, generally speaking, that the majority of standards have been put in place for most organisations. What does happen occasionally, in my experience, once or twice a year, is that an organisation will come to us with a challenge to a standard, and tell us, 'it's not practical for these reasons,' and then we will consider that. That can arise. Usually, there are very good reasons, so, on occasion—just on occasion—a standard may be varied, but there is always a very specific reason for that, but in my experience, I can only think of one example since I took up the post.

10:15

Felly, oes angen bod yn fwy rhagweithiol, er mwyn sicrhau bod y bar yn codi rywfaint?

So, do we have to be more proactive, to ensure that that happens?

Wel, fel dwi’n deall, mae’r safonau uchaf, y disgwyliadau uchaf wedi’u rhoi. Beth fuaswn i’n dweud y mae angen rhoi mwy o sylw iddo fe yw'r hyn sy’n dod yn glir yn ein hadroddiad sicrwydd ni, sef dyw’r cyrff sydd yn barod o dan safonau ddim yn cyrraedd y safonau i gyd sydd arnyn nhw. Mae hyn yn arbennig o wir yn y sector iechyd, sydd wedi o dan safonau am y cyfnod byrraf, ond os wyt ti’n edrych ar y dystiolaeth, mae’r safonau yma, dylen nhw gael eu gweithredu nawr. Dwi wedi cael y cyfle i annerch holl brif weithredwyr y cyrff iechyd yn ddiweddar iawn, a dyna oedd y neges roeddwn i’n dweud: ‘Mae’r safonau mewn grym. Dylech chi fod yn eu cyrraedd nhw nawr.’ Dydyn nhw ddim, cweit, eto. Felly mae’n sylw ni, a dweud y gwir, yn mynd ar gael pobl i gyrraedd y safonau sydd arnyn nhw.

Well, as I understand it, the highest standards and expectations are in place. What I would say is that we need to pay more attention to is what becomes clear in our assurance report, namely that those bodies already captured by standards don't meet all of their standards. And this is particularly true in the health sector which has been captured by standards for the shortest period of time, but if you look at the evidence, these standards should be being implemented now. I've had an opportunity to speak to all the chief executives of the health boards, and that was my message: 'The standards are in place. You should be delivering against those standards now.' They are not quite there yet. So, our focus is on getting people to deliver standards.

A beth oedd ymateb y sector iechyd pan godoch chi’r cwestiwn yna, oherwydd, yn amlwg—

And what was the response of the sector when you raised that question?

O, maen nhw’n uchelgeisiol. Mae yna broblemau ymarferol gyda nhw, ond dwi’n awyddus i gadw’r—

They're ambitious. They have practical problems, but I'm eager to keep—

Sgiliau staff, maint y sefydliadau. A fodd bynnag, bydda i’n cadw’r pwysau arnyn nhw yn sicr, a dwi’n cwrdd â’r Gweinidog iechyd yn ddiweddarach y mis yma i drafod hyn.

Staff skills, the size of the organisations. However, I will keep up the pressure on them, and I will be meeting the health Minister later this month to discuss the issue.

Wrth gwrs, mae rhai o’r cyrff—ac efallai iechyd yn fwy diweddar—dŷn nhw ddim yn cyrraedd y safonau, er eu bod nhw wedi bod yn atebol i’r safonau ers blynyddoedd mawr, felly—

Of course, some of the bodies—and health perhaps more recently—aren't meeting the standards, even though they have been accountable to them for several years, so—

Yn yr achos hynny, mae gyda ni gynllun monitro blynyddol trwyadl o’r cyrff yma, felly yn yr achos yma, byddai fy swyddogion i yn cwrdd â’r cyrff ac yn tynnu eu sylw nhw. A bod yn deg, dwi’n meddwl bod cyrff ar y cyfan pan ŷn ni’n tynnu eu sylw nhw yn cywiro yr hyn maen nhw’n gallu.

Beth sy’n digwydd—mae yna ddau lwybr arall allwn ni gymryd wedyn os nad ydyn ni'n gweld gwelliant: rŷn ni’n gallu ymchwilio ar ein menter ein hunain—ac mae hyn wedi digwydd yn y gwasanaeth iechyd, gyda gwasanaeth derbynfa Betsi Cadwaladr fel enghraifft—ac â dweud y gwir, mae yna ymchwiliadau ar waith gyda nifer o gyrff iechyd ar hyn o bryd, lle rŷn ni’n mynd ac yn ymchwilio, ac mae hynny yn ein galluogi ni i roi camau gorfodi arnyn nhw gydag amserlen.

Y route arall yw os oes yna aelod o’r cyhoedd yn cwyno am wasanaeth. Felly, mae yna dri pheth yn digwydd. Mae yna arolygon blynyddol gan ein staff ni o bob un corff, a chyfarfodydd yn digwydd rhwng swyddogion. Pan ŷn ni’n sicr yn gweld problemau, rŷn ni’n gallu cynnal ymchwiliadau ar ein menter ein hunain, ac rŷn ni’n gallu delio gyda chwynion gan y cyhoedd.

Felly, dwi’n meddwl ein bod ni eisiau bod yn rheoleiddiwr rhagweithiol. Mae yna bethau pwysig yn y safonau yna, ac mae’r adroddiad sicrwydd yn rhoi rhywfaint o flas i chi o’r hyn rŷn ni’n darganfod, a’r hyn rŷn ni eisiau mynd i’r afael ag e fel sefydliad.

Er mwyn arwain at bwynt Alun o gynyddu defnydd, dyma bwrpas hwn i gyd. Nid y pwrpas yw eu cael nhw i gyfieithu eu gwefannau nhw, y pwrpas yw ein bod ni’n cael mwy o bobl i ddefnyddio’r gwasanaethau Cymraeg sydd ar gael er mwyn atgyfnerthu’r Gymraeg.

Yes. In that case, we have a thorough annual monitoring scheme, so in this case, my officials would meet with the organisations and draw their attention to the problems. I think, generally speaking, when we do highlight these issues with organisations, they do take steps to correct the situation.

What happens—there are other routes we can take if we don't see improvements: we can carry out investigations of our own bat—and this has happened with Betsi Cadwaladr health board, for example—and there are investigations in the process with a number of health organisations where we do investigate, and that allows us to take enforcement steps with a particular timetable.

The other route is that if a member of the public complains about a service. So, there are three things happening. There are annual reviews by our staff of all organisations, and meetings happen between officials. When we do see problems, we can carry out investigations, and we can deal with complaints from the public.

So, I do think that we want to be a proactive regulator. There are important things in those standards, and the assurance report gives you a flavour of that, and lets you know what we're finding in what we want to tackle.

In order to go back to Alun's point on increasing usage, that's the whole point of this. It's not to get them to translate their websites, it's to encourage more people to use these Welsh language services that are available, in order to reinforce the Welsh language.

Felly, un maes lle mae yna gyfleoedd a bygythiadau o safbwynt defnydd o’r Gymraeg, yw deallusrwydd artiffisial—

So, one area where there are opportunities and threats in terms of the use of the Welsh language, is artificial intelligence—

—a thechnoleg. Yn amlwg, mae mwy a mwy o wasanaethau yn cael eu darparu trwy gyfrwng dulliau technegol ac yn y blaen, sydd efallai ddim mor hawdd i’w darparu trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg, ond hefyd mae yna fodd defnyddio’r dechnoleg yna er budd y Gymraeg.

—and technology. Clearly, more services are being provided through the medium of technical methods and so on, that perhaps aren't as easy to provide through the medium of Welsh, but there is also a means of using that technology for the benefit of the Welsh language.

Felly, allwch chi sôn ychydig am eich gwaith yn y maes yna?

So, your views on that, please.

Mae yna nifer o bwyntiau fan hyn. Mae’n dod yn gynyddol amlwg i fi bod deallusrwydd artiffisial—ein bod ni angen trafod a sicrhau bod y Gymraeg yn ganolog i unrhyw ddatblygiadau artiffisial, ac mae gan Lywodraeth Cymru eu cynllun datblygu technoleg nhw, wrth gwrs.

Mae nifer o bethau’n berthnasol i’r safonau. Un yw y safonau eu hunain: ydyn ni angen ailedrych arnyn nhw i sicrhau eu bod nhw’n dal datblygiadau deallusrwydd artiffisial? Rŷn ni ar hyn o bryd yn delio gyda sefyllfaoedd lle dyw podlediadau, er enghraifft, ddim wedi eu disgrifio yn y safonau, ond rŷn ni’n gorfod delio gyda nhw, felly mae hwnna’n un pwynt.

Y pwynt arall yw’r pwynt sy'n hollol gywir, mae yna gyfle a her mewn—. Mae deallusrwydd artiffisial yn cynnig cyfle gyda lot o wasanaethau ffôn, ac mae yna rai wrthi yn rhoi hyn ar waith. Mae yna sgyrsfotiau ar gael nawr yn Gymraeg, ond, wrth gwrs, os nad ŷch chi’n cynllunio’r Gymraeg o’r dechrau yn y gwasanaethau yma—a dwi’n meddwl bod hyn yn rhan o her y sector iechyd—mae yna lawer o feddalwedd yn cael ei ddefnyddio a llawer o systemau lle dyw’r Gymraeg ddim wedi ei gynllunio o’r dechrau, ac mae yna gyrff cyhoeddus eraill, onid oes, sy’n ymwneud â datblygu digidol yn y sector gyhoeddus. Felly, mae yna waith i'w wneud a dwi'n meddwl eich bod chi wedi adnabod maes pwysig iawn. Dwi ddim yn meddwl ein bod ni, fel sefydliad, wedi mynd i'r afael ag ef yn llawn eto o gwbl, ond dwi'n meddwl y dylai fod ar yr agenda i ni i gyd.

Yes, there are a number of points here. It is becoming increasingly obvious to me that AI is an issue that we need to discuss and ensure that the Welsh language is at the heart of any developments in that area, and the Welsh Government does have its technology development programme, of course.

There are a number of things that are relevant to the standards. One is the standards themselves: do we need to review them to ensure they do capture AI developments? We are currently dealing with situations where podcasts, for example, aren't described in the standards, but we do have to deal with them, so that's one point.

Another point, and the point that you quite rightly made, is that there are opportunities and challenges in AI. It provides a number of opportunities in terms of phone services, and some are using those opportunities. There are chatbots available through the medium of Welsh, but if you don't plan for the Welsh language from the outset—and I think this is part of the challenge for the health sector—there's a great deal of software being used and many systems being used where the Welsh language hasn't been included from the outset, and there are other public bodies that are involved with digital development in the public sector. So, there is work to be done there and I do think you've identified an area that is extremely important. And I don't think that we, as an organisation, have fully tackled it as of yet, but I do think that it should be on the agenda for us all.

10:20

Ie, ac mae e’n rhywbeth rŷn ni wedi cyffwrdd ag e fel pwyllgor, ac mae angen iddo fod yn destun gwaith pellach.

Gaf fi ofyn pa asesiad rŷch chi wedi’i wneud o’r memorandwm o gyd-ddealltwriaeth sydd rhwng y comisiynydd a Chomisiwn y Senedd, sydd ddim, wrth gwrs, yn dod o dan y safonau?

Yes, and it is something that we have touched on as a committee, and it does need to be subject to further work.

May I ask what assessment you have made of the memorandum of understanding between the commissioner's office and the Senedd Commission, which does not, of course, come under the standards regime?

Ond yng ngoleuni, efallai, diwygio'r Senedd, oes angen edrych ar ddatblygu'r trefniadau yna ac efallai fod mwy o oruchwyliaeth dros y comisiwn? Dwi ddim yn gwybod a oes gyda chi farn ar hynna.

But in the light of Senedd reform, do we need to look at developing those arrangements and perhaps there is more oversight in terms of the commission itself? I don't know whether you have a view on that. 

Ie, yn sicr dwi'n ymwybodol o'r memorandwm yna o gyd-ddealltwriaeth. Dwi ddim yn gwybod, Lowri, os wyt ti eisiau ymateb fan hyn.

I'm certainly aware of that memorandum of understanding. I don't know, Lowri, if you'd like to respond to this.

Dŷn ni wedi dechrau cael trafodaethau ynglŷn â'r memorandwm hwnnw. Beth dŷn ni'n ei weld, dwi'n meddwl, ydy bod newidiadau mawr yn mynd i ddigwydd i'r Senedd dros y blynyddoedd nesaf a dŷn ni'n gweld cyfleoedd mawr yn fan hyn i ailegnio ac ailafael wedyn, efallai, yn y memorandwm hwnnw, ond bod y Senedd ei hun yn edrych, neu'r comisiwn o ran cefnogi’r Senedd, o ran sut y mae rhagor o gyfleoedd i Aelodau fod yn gallu defnyddio’r Gymraeg a beth mae hyn yn ei olygu o ran y gefnogaeth sydd ei angen i alluogi hynny—pa un ai ydy hynny’n dod allan o femorandwm, er enghraifft, ynteu ydy o'n dod o ddulliau eraill. Mae hynny’n rhywbeth yn sicr dŷn ni'n awyddus i fod yn ei drafod. Byddwn yn trafod rhywfaint ar hyn, dwi ddim yn amau, yfory wrth inni roi tystiolaeth i'r Pwyllgor Biliau Diwygio, felly.

Yes, we have started to have discussions on the memorandum. What we're seeing, I think, is that there will be major changes in the Senedd over the next few years and we see major opportunities here to revitalise that memorandum, but that the Senedd itself could look, or that the commission in supporting the Senedd could consider how further opportunities for Members to use the Welsh language could be implemented and what that means in terms of the support needed to enable that—whether that comes through a memorandum or whether it is through other approaches. That is certainly something that we're eager to discuss. We will be discussing some of these, I suppose, tomorrow as we give evidence to the Reform Bills Committee.

Jest yn olaf, os caf fi, Gadeirydd, pan fuoch chi gerbron y pwyllgor—doeddwn i ddim ar y pwyllgor adeg hynny—yn eich gwrandawiad cyn penodi, fe ofynnwyd ichi ba rannau o'r sector breifat y byddech chi'n eu blaenoriaethu o ran ymestyn y safonau—

And finally, if I may, Chair, when you appeared before the committee—I wasn't a member of the committee at that time—in your pre-appointment hearing, when you were asked what parts of the private sector you would prioritise in terms of extending the standards—

Dwi ddim yn cofio beth ddywedais i. [Chwerthin.]

I don't remember what I said. [Laughter.]

Efallai eich bod chi angen mwy o amser i feddwl am hynny.

Perhaps you need more time to think about that.

Efallai fy mod i dal yn yr un sefyllfa—

Perhaps I'm still in the same situation—

Reit, ocê, wel, dyna roeddwn i'n mynd i ofyn: ydych chi wedi cael cyfle i ystyried—?

Well, that was my question, essentially: have you had an opportunity to consider—?

Ie, hynny yw, ydy e'n gwestiwn rhethregol beth bynnag? Y sefyllfa ar hyn o bryd yw dwi ddim yn ymwybodol bod trafodaeth am gyflwyno'r safonau i'r sector breifat a dŷn ni ddim wedi gwneud asesiad o ba mor bosibl fyddai hynny.

Beth fyddwn i'n dweud yw ein bod ni nawr ar fin rhoi safonau ar y cwmnïau dŵr. Dwi ddim yn siŵr a ydyn nhw yn y sector breifat neu beth bynnag yw hynna yng Nghymru erbyn hyn, ond mae’r trafodaethau hynny'n hynod, hynod o gadarnhaol. A dwi'n edrych ymlaen, a dweud y gwir, a dwi'n credu eu bod nhw hefyd ar gyfer gosod safonau arnyn nhw.

O ran y sector breifat yn ei gyfanrwydd, fe wnes i gyfeirio ar y dechrau at y ffaith bod gyda ni dîm o staff sy’n gweithio gyda’r sector breifat. Beth fuaswn i'n dweud yw bod yna rai sectorau lle rŷn ni wedi gallu gwneud datblygiadau mawr yn y gorffennol—y sector bancio, lle rŷn ni'n teimlo ein bod ni'n colli tir oherwydd eu defnydd nhw o dechnoleg, sydd ddim yn ein taro ni'n hollol synhwyrol, oherwydd mae’r sefydliadau yma'n sefydliadau rhyngwladol sy’n defnyddio ieithoedd gwahanol mewn llefydd eraill yn y byd. Fodd bynnag, dŷn ni ddim yn mynd yn bell iawn—wel, does dim ap bancio ar gael yn Gymraeg, nac oes, felly dŷn ni ddim wedi llwyddo hyd yn hyn. Dyw e ddim yn argoeli’n dda chwaith, taswn i'n hollol onest. Felly, mae yna sectorau fel yna, lle dyw ein sgiliau perswâd ni a’r gweithredu dros y blynyddoedd ddim wedi llwyddo. Felly, mae hynny'n eich arwain chi i feddwl, oni bai bod y gyfraith yn newid, na fyddwn ni'n gweld newid. Felly, mae hwnna'n un sector penodol.

Mae yna sectorau eraill, er enghraifft, efallai archfarchnadoedd, lle mae yna ddatblygiad. Felly, efallai fod y ddadl dros roi rheolau cyfreithiol ddim yn gymaint o brawf dros hynny. Felly, dyna le ydw i ar hyn o bryd, ond yn y cyfamser, mae yna lawer iawn o waith da yn digwydd a llawer iawn o gyrff yn y sector preifat yn awyddus iawn i ddefnyddio eu Cymraeg nhw.

Yes, is it a rhetorical question anyway? The situation at the moment is that I'm not aware that there is discussion on introducing standards into the private sector and we haven't carried out an assessment of how possible that might be. 

What I would say is that we are now about to place standards on the water companies. I'm not sure if they're private sector organisations or not in Wales at the moment, but those discussions have been extremely positive. And I look forward, and I think they're looking forward, to seeing the standards put in place there.

In terms of the private sector in its entirety, I referred at the outset to the fact that we have a team of staff that works with the private sector. What I would say is that there are some sectors where we have been able to make major developments in the past, for example the banking sector. And now we feel that we may be losing ground because of their use of technology, which doesn't strike us as being entirely sensible, because these are international organistions that use different languages across the world. However, for example, there is no Welsh language banking app available, is there, so we haven't succeeded to date, and it doesn't bode well, if I'm perfectly honest, for the future. So, there are sectors such as those, where our persuasiveness and our action over the years haven't been successful. So, that leads you to think that unless the law changes, we won't see change in those sectors. So, that's one specific sector. 

There are other sectors, supermarkets, for example, where there has been development. So, perhaps the case for placing legal standards isn't as urgent. So, that's where I am at the moment, but in the meantime, there's a great deal of good work happening and many organisations in the private sector are very eager to use the Welsh language.

Iawn, grêt. Fe wnawn ni symud ymlaen at Tom Giffard.

Great. We'll move on to Tom Giffard.

Diolch yn fawr. Rŷch chi wedi sôn yn barod am y sector iechyd. Roeddwn i'n moyn gofyn ichi am y fframwaith 'Mwy na geiriau’ yn y sector iechyd a beth yw eich asesiad chi o'r fframwaith hwnnw? A ydy e'n gwneud digon i godi safonau?

Thank you very much. You've spoken already about the health sector. I wanted to ask you about the 'More than just words' framework for the health sector. What's your assessment of that framework? Is it doing enough to raise standards?

Mae'n ddiddorol iawn ac yn amserol ac efallai y gwnaf i ofyn i Lowri gyfrannu i'r ateb yma. I mi, mae 'Mwy na geiriau' a'r safonau'n mynd law yn llaw. Ac mae fy swyddogion i newydd wneud cyflwyniad i fwrdd newydd 'Mwy na geiriau'. Mae rhai o’r safonau, wrth gwrs, yn gallu gorfodi a dyw strategaeth 'Mwy na geiriau' ddim yn gallu gorfodi. Felly, mae yna rai elfennau o fewn gweledigaeth 'Mwy na geiriau' lle mae fy nghyfundrefn i'n gallu helpu.

Fy marn i yw bod yna ffordd bell i fynd, a hefyd mae'r safonau dim ond yn mynd mor bell. Yr hyn sydd yn strategaeth 'Mwy na geiriau' mewn gwirionedd yw'r hyn sy'n wirioneddol bwysig. Rŷch chi angen y camau sydd yn y safonau er mwyn cyflawni'r pethau gwirioneddol bwysig y mae 'Mwy na geiriau' yn trio eu cyflawni. Felly, i fi, mae'r ddau yn mynd law yn llaw. Lowri, dwi ddim yn gwybod os wyt ti eisiau ychwanegu rhywbeth.

It's very interesting and timely and perhaps I'll ask Lowri to contribute on this issue. For me, 'More than just words' and the standards go hand in hand. And my officials have just given a presentation to the new 'More than just words' board. Some of the standards, of course, can take enforcement actions, but the strategy cannot. So, there are some elements within the vision of 'More than just words' where my regime can assist. 

My view is that there's a long way to go and the standards only go so far. What is in the 'More than just words' strategy in reality is what is truly important. You need the steps in the standards in order to deliver these very important things that 'More than just words' is seeking to achieve. So, for me, they go hand in hand. But, Lowri, I don't know if you want to contribute.

10:25

O safbwynt safonau'r Gymraeg, dydyn nhw ddim yn mynd mor bell ag y byddai modd i 'Mwy na geiriau' fynd. Mae 'Mwy na geiriau' yn ymwneud â gallu darparu gofal trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg i bobl. O safbwynt y safonau, mae yna gwpwl o safonau sy'n mynd i'r cyfeiriad hwnnw. Mae safon 110 yn gofyn i fyrddau iechyd ac yn y blaen i lunio cynlluniau ar gyfer cynyddu eu capasiti nhw i fod yn darparu ymgynghoriadau clinigol. Hefyd, mae yna ofyn i fyrddau iechyd fod yn adnabod dewis iaith cleifion mewnol ar y diwrnod cyntaf maen nhw yn yr ysbyty. Ond wedyn mae 'Mwy na geiriau' yn amlwg efo'r pwyslais yna o fod yn ceisio sicrhau bod pobl ifanc, er enghraifft, pobl hŷn, pobl â phroblemau iechyd meddwl—eu bod nhw yn cael gofal trwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg. 

Mae'r asesiad yna o'r adroddiad 'Mwy na geiriau' blaenorol wedi adnabod yn glir fod y safonau wedi gwthio gweithrediad y fframwaith hwnnw yn ei flaen, ac mae wedi hefyd, fel mae'n digwydd, gydnabod bod y camau gweithredu yn y sector gofal cymdeithasol ar y blaen i'r gwaith oedd yn cael ei wneud o safbwynt 'Mwy na geiriau' yn y sector iechyd, sy'n mynd nôl at beth roedden ni'n trafod gynnau, wrth gwrs, fod y safonau wedi bod ar ofal cymdeithasol, oherwydd awdurdodau lleol, am amser hirach, fel petai. 

Mi ddaru ni weithio efo'r grŵp gorchwyl a gorffen oedd yn gyfrifol am y 'Mwy na geiriau' newydd i fod yn pwysleisio pwysigrwydd y safonau a sut y byddai'r safonau'n gallu cynorthwyo gweithrediad 'Mwy na geiriau', ac fel arall hefyd. Wedyn, ers hynny, ers i'r 'Mwy na geiriau' newydd gael ei gyhoeddi, dŷn ni wedi adnabod llefydd lle mae yna ychydig bach o orgyffwrdd. Dŷn ni wedi cyfathrebu hynny efo'r Llywodraeth. Dŷn ni wedi pwysleisio dro ar ôl tro, mewn ffordd, fod y cyfan yn rhan o'r un jig-so a'n bod ni'n gweld bod gan y safonau—yn arbennig, er enghraifft, oherwydd y gofyn yna i adnabod sgiliau'r gweithlu a rhoi cyfleoedd i'r gweithlu ddatblygu sgiliau yn y Gymraeg a hefyd i fod yn pennu gofynion swyddi, er enghraifft, sydd yn ddiddorol mewn gwirionedd oherwydd, o'n gwaith ni, roedd 0 y cant o'r swyddi a hysbysebwyd ar gyfer y sector iechyd yn ystod y flwyddyn ddiwethaf wedi cael eu hysbysebu gyda'r Gymraeg yn hanfodol. Buasai rhywun wedi disgwyl y byddai rhai ohonynt, oherwydd gofynion 'Mwy na geiriau'. 

Felly, jest i grynhoi, mae'n sefyllfa ddiddorol, ond dwi'n meddwl, o fod yn cydweithio, dŷn ni'n mynd i'r un cyfeiriad. Ac fel dŷn ni wedi dweud, dŷn ni'n trafod yn rheolaidd efo swyddogion y Llywodraeth, efo'r bwrdd cynghori ac yn y blaen, a bod yna gydweithio wedyn i alluogi gwireddu'r safonau ond hefyd 'Mwy na geiriau'. 

From the point of view of the Welsh language standards, they don't go as far as 'More than just words' would. 'More than just words' relates to the ability to provide care through the medium of Welsh to people. In terms of the standards, there are a couple of standards that go in that direction. So, standard 110, which requires health boards and so on to be planning to increase their capacity to be providing clinical consultations, and also there is a requirement for health boards to be identifying the in-patient language choice on the first day that they are in hospital. But then 'More than just words' has that emphasis on trying to ensure that young people, for example, older people, those with mental health issues—that they have care through the medium of Welsh.

The assessment of the previous 'More than just words' report has identified clearly that the standards framework has driven action and the implementation of that framework, and it has also identified, as it happens, that the actions in the social care sector are leading the work that's being done in the health sector, which goes back to the previous discussion that we had, that the standards have been on social care, because of local authorities, for a longer time. 

We worked with the task and finish group that was responsible for the new 'More than just words' framework to be emphasising the importance of the standards and how the standards could support the implementation of the 'More than just words' framework and vice versa. And since then, since the new 'More than just words' framework was published, we've identified areas where there is an overlap, and we've communicated that with the Government. And we've emphasised time and time again that it's all part of the same jigsaw and that we've seen that the standards, particularly in terms of the requirement to be identifying the skills of the workforce and providing opportunities for the workforce to develop their Welsh language skills and also to be setting job specifications, which is very interesting, truth be told, because in terms of our work, 0 per cent of the posts advertised in the health sector in the past year were advertised with Welsh being essential. One would have expected some of those to be advertised with Welsh being essential because of 'More than just words'.

So, to summarise, it's an interesting situation, but we are collaborating—we're moving in the same direction and we're having regular discussions with Government officals and with the advisory board and so on so that there is that collaboration to be able to achieve and deliver the standards but also 'More than just words'.

Diolch am hynny. Diddorol iawn. Gaf i ofyn rhywbeth hollol wahanol? Dwi'n gwybod bod gennych chi gynlluniau i gynnal cynhadledd a chyfarfod cyffredinol Cymdeithas Ryngwladol y Comisiynwyr Iaith yn 2024. Beth ydych chi'n meddwl bydd y gost debygol i chi a beth fydd y prif fanteision o wneud hynny?

Thank you for that, it's very interesting. Can I ask, then, about an entirely different issue? I know that you have plans to hold the International Association of Language Commissioners conference and general meeting for 2024. What are the likely costs for you of that and what will be the main benefits of doing so?

Roeddwn i'n ddiolchgar iawn i Gadeirydd y pwyllgor am noddi'r digwyddiad fydd yn cael ei gynnal yn y Senedd. Mae'n ddigwyddiad pwysig yn rhyngwladol. Rŷn ni'n gobeithio y bydd yr holl gomisiynwyr iaith rhyngwladol eraill yn dod. Byddan nhw'n teithio ar eu cost eu hunain, ond yn amlwg bydd costau ynghlwm â'r dydd. Rŷn ni'n barod wedi sicrhau rhywfaint o nawdd gan y sector breifat i gynnal y digwyddiad, a byddwn ni'n ymchwilio avenues eraill dros y cyfnod nesaf. Efallai y byddwn ni angen cefnogaeth bellach i'w gynnal e, yn dibynnu ar sut rŷn ni'n mynd i'w gynnal e. Ond dyw e ddim wedi cael ei gynnal wyneb yn wyneb ers dwy flynedd, felly mae'n gyfle pwysig, a dwi'n credu y byddwn ni'n gallu croesawu nifer fawr—gobeithio y gallwn ni groesawu nifer fawr o gynrychiolwyr o Gymru i'r digwyddiad i ddysgu gan wledydd eraill. 

Well, we're very grateful to the Chair of the committee for sponsoring the event that will be held in the Senedd. It's an important event internationally. We do hope that all international language commissioners will come. They will be paying their own travel costs, but there will be costs related to the event itself. We've already drawn some sponsorship from the private sector to enable us to hold that and host that event, and we will be exploring other avenues over the coming period. Perhaps we will need additional support to host the event, depending on how we do that. But it hasn't been held face-to-face for two years, so it is an important opportunity, and I think that we'll be able to welcome a large number—we hope to be able to welcome a number of representatives from Wales to learn from other nations too. 

Ond, hyd yn hyn, oes ffigwr gyda chi am y gost?

But do you have a figure?

Bydd e—. Oes. Dwi ddim yn gwybod—. Ydw i'n gorfod ei rhannu fe'n gyhoeddus?

Yes. I don't know—. Do I have to share it publicly?

10:30

Y pwynt yw hwn: allwn ni ei gynnal e ar sawl cost. Felly, mae yna amrediad o gostau. Rŷn ni wedi dechrau casglu nawdd masnachol. Rŷn ni'n ddiolchgar i sawl cwmni cyfreithiol sydd yn barod wedi cynnig noddi'r digwyddiad. Byddwn ni hefyd yn gobeithio gweithio gyda phartneriaid. Mae safon beth rŷn ni'n mynd i allu cynnig yn dibynnu ar faint o arian allwn ni ei gynhyrchu.

The point is this: we can hold it for several different costs. So, there is a range of costs. We've started to gather public sponsorship. We're very grateful to several legal companies that have agreed to sponsor the event. We'll also be working with partners. The standard of what we're going to be able to provide depends on how much funding we can generate.

Dwi'n meddwl ei bod hi'n werth nodi hefyd o safbwynt proffil Cymru yn rhyngwladol pa mor bwysig ydy hi ein bod ni'n perthyn i gymdeithas o'r fath a bod cynhadledd yn digwydd yng Nghymru i ddangos sut rydym ni'n rhannu arfer da. Dwi'n meddwl bod hynny'n un o amcanion Deddf cenedlaethau’r dyfodol, er enghraifft, ein bod ni'n gyfrifol yn rhyngwladol, felly ein bod ni'n gwneud hynny trwy rannu arfer da. Ac mae nifer o ranbarthau a gwledydd sy'n aelodau o'r gymdeithas, wrth gwrs, yn ardaloedd o flaenoriaeth i strategaeth ryngwladol y Llywodraeth. Os cofiwch chi, mi fues i yma ychydig o fisoedd yn ôl yn trafod y berthynas efo Iwerddon; yn amlwg, mae gennym ni berthynas agos gyda chomisiynydd iaith Iwerddon, felly bydd y gynhadledd yn gyfle i fod yn atgyfnerthu'r berthynas yna ac i fod yn rhannu arfer da a dysgu gan y gwledydd a rhanbarthau eraill ar draws y byd.

I think it's also worth noting in terms of Wales's international profile how important it is that we are involved with such an association and that the conference is happening in Wales in order to show that we are sharing good practice. I think this is one of the objectives of the future generations Act, that we do have an international profile and share good practice. A number of the regions and countries that are members of the association are areas of priority for the Welsh Government's international strategy, too. You will recall that we were here a few months ago discussing the relationship with Ireland; clearly, we have a close relationship with the Irish language commissioner, so, this conference will be an opportunity to reinforce that relationship and to share good practice and to learn from other nations and countries across the globe.

Dwi'n hollol hapus i fod yn agored am hyn i gyd, jest ar hyn o bryd, dydyn ni ddim cweit yn gwybod; ond byddwn ni bendant yn cynnal y gynhadledd.

I'm happy to be open about all of this, but at the moment, we don't quite know; but we will certainly be hosting the event.

Ac yn fodlon ysgrifennu at y Cadeirydd i—?

And you're willing to write to the Chair to—?

Gwych. Diolch am hynna. Gaf i fynd nôl at pan roeddem ni'n sôn am y gyllideb? O ran effaith chwyddiant cyflog, pa effaith ydych chi'n meddwl bydd hwnna'n cael ar adnoddau staffio os does dim cyllid ychwanegol?

Great. Thank you for that. May I return to our discussion about the budget? In terms of the impact of wage inflation, what impact do you think that will have on staffing resources if there is no additional funding?

Mae'r ateb i hwnna'n glir iawn. Rydw i wedi egluro yn gynt bod fy nghyllideb rhaglen mor fach, allai ddim gweld bod yr arbedion yn gallu dod o fanna, felly effaith uniongyrchol peidio cael ychwanegiad i'r gyllideb fydd colli swyddi. Does dim ffordd arall. Ac wrth reswm, bydd hynny'n effeithio ar y rhaglen waith sydd gyda ni o ran y sector breifat, o ran y gwaith rheoleiddio; felly, fe fydd e yn cael effaith. Dŷn ni wedi gwneud cais rhesymol, dŷn ni'n gobeithio, sef dim ond am y chwyddiant cyflogau. Dydyn ni ddim wedi gofyn am—. Mae yna broses lle rŷn ni'n gwneud cais i Lywodraeth Cymru am arian; yn y cais hwnnw, y cyfan rŷn ni wedi ei wneud yw gofyn am yr ychwanegiad ar gyfer chwyddiant cyflogau. Os nad yw hynny'n dod—. Dŷn ni ddim wedi cynnal y trafodaethau am beth fyddai effaith hynny, ond mae synnwyr cyffredin yn dweud mai'r effaith fyddai lleihau ein rhaglen waith ni a lleihau'r nifer o swyddogion sy'n gweithio inni.

Buaswn i'n hoffi efallai tynnu eich sylw chi at y ffaith pan sefydlwyd y corff—ac efallai o fewn y Mesur—roedd yna ddarpariaeth ar gyfer cyflogi 47 o unigolion; 42 yw'r nifer ar hyn o bryd, am resymau ariannol, a hefyd dwi'n meddwl bod costau gweinyddiaeth gyffredinol y corff wedi lleihau 40 y cant yn y cyfnod yna. Felly, dwi'n meddwl ein bod ni'n gorff darbodus; does dim llawer mwy i'w dorri erbyn hyn, gan y byddwn ni wedi gwneud yr arbedion swyddfeydd. Felly, fe fydd e'n effeithio—. Hynny yw, gallwn i ymhelaethu, ond y nifer o gyrff yn y sector preifat rŷn ni'n gallu delio gyda nhw a'r nifer o ymchwiliadau rŷn ni'n gallu eu cynnal yw'r math o bethau fyddai’n bownd o gael eu heffeithio.

The answer to that is very clear. I explained earlier that my programme budget is so small, I can't see that the savings can come from there, so the direct impact of not having an addition to the budget will be job losses. There is no other way around that. And naturally, that will impact on our programme of work in terms of the private sector and the regulatory work; so it will have an impact. We have made a reasonable bid just for the wage inflation increase. We haven't asked for—. There is a process where we make a bid to the Welsh Government for funding; in that bid, all we have asked for is that addition for wage inflation. If that isn't forthcoming—. We haven't had those discussions on what the impact of that would be, but common sense tells you that the impact would be to reduce our work programme and to reduce the number of officials working for us.

I would like to highlight the fact that when the organisation was created—and I think it's included within the Measure—there was provision for employing 47 individuals; the number at the moment is 42, for financial reasons, and I also think that the general administration costs of the organisation have reduced by 40 per cent in that period. So, I do think that we are a prudent organisation; there's not much more to be cut, because we will have made the savings in terms of our office space. So it will impact—. I could expand on this, but it will affect the number of private organisations we can deal with and the number of investigations we can carry out. 

Mae'r neges yna yn glir. Diolch am hynna. A jest wrth edrych ar gyllideb 2024-25, beth fyddai eich blaenoriaethau chi ar gyfer hynny; beth fyddech chi eisiau gweld yn digwydd?

That message is clear. Thanks for that. Looking at the budget for 2024-25, what would your priorities be for that; what would you want to see happening?

Fy mlaenoriaeth i fyddai gallu parhau â'r rhaglen waith rŷn ni wedi ei gynllunio. Mewn byd delfrydol, hoffwn i gael mwy o arian i ymgymryd â mwy o brosiectau diddorol, ond ar hyn o bryd, dwi'n deall bod cyni yn y sector cyhoeddus, ac felly dyna pam dwi'n credu fy mod i wedi bod yn sôn am ddefnyddio'r pwerau sydd gyda fi a gwneud defnydd effeithiol o beth sydd gyda fi.

My priority would be to continue with the work programme that we have planned. In an ideal world, I would like to have more money to undertake more interesting projects, but at the moment, I do understand that there is a shortage of funds in the public sector, and that's why I've been talking about using the powers that I have and making effective use of what I currently have.

Diolch am hynny. Oes gan unrhyw Aelodau unrhyw gwestiynau pellach? Dydw i ddim yn gweld bod. Oedd unrhyw beth pellach oeddech chi'n gobeithio byddai'n codi'r bore yma sydd ddim wedi?

Thank you for that. Do Members have any further questions? I see that there are none. Is there anything else that you hoped would come up in today's meeting that hasn't?

Na. Dwi'n falch iawn am y cyfle i fod yma. Gobeithio fy mod i wedi egluro ychydig am fy ngwaith i. Rwy'n hapus iawn i ddod unrhyw bryd.

No. I was delighted to have the opportunity to join you. I hope I have explained some of my work to you and I'm happy to return at any point.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Roeddwn i wedi sôn efallai y byddwn ni'n ysgrifennu atoch chi am ragor o wybodaeth am rai pethau, felly byddwn ni'n gwneud hynny. Bydd transgript hefyd o'r hyn sydd wedi cael ei ddweud yn cael ei ddanfon atoch chi i chi wirio ei fod e'n gofnod teg o'r cyfarfod, ond diolch yn fawr iawn i'r ddwy ohonoch chi am roi tystiolaeth y bore yma; dŷn ni wir yn ei werthfawrogi. Ac ymddiheuriadau unwaith eto am fod rhyw bum munud yn hwyr ar y dechrau. Diolch eto i Llyr am gamu i'r adwy. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

Aelodau, byddwn ni nawr yn cymryd egwyl fer tan 10:55. Fe wnawn ni aros i glywed ein bod ni'n breifat.

Thank you very much. I did mention a few points that we would write to you for further information on, and we will certainly be doing that. A transcript of what has been said will also be sent to you for you to check that it's a fair reflection of the meeting, but thank you very much to both of you for sharing your evidence this morning; we truly appreciate it. And apologies once again that I was around five minutes late at the beginning. Thank you once again to Llyr for stepping into the breach. Thank you very much.

Members, we will now take a short break until 10:55. We'll wait to hear that we're in private session.

10:35

Gohiriwyd y cyfarfod rhwng 10:35 a 10:55.

The meeting adjourned between 10:35 and 10:55.

10:55
3. Craffu ar waith Chwaraeon Cymru – Hydref 2023
3. Scrutiny of Sport Wales - Autumn 2023

Bore da eto. Croeso’n ôl i'r bobl sydd yn gwylio ein pwyllgor. Dŷn ni nawr yn symud ymlaen at eitem 3, craffu ar Chwaraeon Cymru.

Good morning once again. Welcome back to those watching our committee meeting. We're moving on to item 3, scrutiny of Sport Wales.

It's my pleasure to invite the witnesses to introduce themselves for the record.

Hello, I'm Tanni Grey-Thompson. I'm chair of Sport Wales.

Bore da. Brian Davies. Fi yw prif weithredwr Chwaraeon Cymru.

Good morning. I'm Brian Davies. I am the chief executive of Sport Wales.

Thank you both very much. We'll go straight into questions, if that's all right. Could you outline for us, please, what the effect is of the cost-of-living pressures that are being felt in Wales on sports participation, but also on facilities? 

In terms of sports participation, we're seeing a number of challenges, which is laid on top of the impact of COVID. It's going to take a little bit more time for some of the figures to come out, but what we're seeing is that people from the most challenged socioeconomic backgrounds are struggling to participate. We're seeing that in some of the school figures as well, in terms of participation outside the school curriculum, in terms of the numbers of young people. So, the cost-of-living crisis will continue to have an impact. I think it's something that we're incredibly mindful of in Sport Wales and also within the governing bodies, in terms of how we're trying to present sports opportunities.

But the impact is not just going to be felt in the short term—it's going to be felt for years and years to come, because if young people are dropping out of physical activity now, or they don't feel that they have the opportunity to do so, the impact that's going to have on the health and well-being, and mental health well-being as well as physical, will be felt for a long time to come.

In terms of facilities, obviously, we get support for capital projects—£8 million. It's great to have that support, but if we look at the number of applications we have in terms of continuing to build facilities, we could always do with more money, understanding that part of the conversation is very challenging in terms of the budgets. But the impact of local decisions, potential pool closures—all these things come together to have an impact.

There are probably a couple of things I'd just add to that, if I can. We were really grateful to the Welsh Government for a contribution to the cost-of-living crisis last year, which we distributed to the sector, and I know our partners in the sector were very grateful for that support. Obviously, that isn't there this year, in the year we're currently in.

When it comes to the capital, clearly there's been at least a 25 per cent increase in costs of any capital projects, so that eats in massively to our capital allocation that we can distribute. And as Tanni has said, the number of applications we receive far outweighs the actual amount that's available to distribute. So, the demand is enormous. It's an area of the sector that was disregarded for so many years. We had the glory days of the initial lottery introduction where we built world-class facilities, brand new—Britain's first velodrome, first indoor athletics track. They didn't exist in the UK, and we built them with the support of partners like local authorities and governing bodies back in that heyday. But there is now a lack of capital for this sector to benefit from, and a 25 per cent increase in costs at least.

It's a very challenging picture. Thank you for outlining that. I think it was last year, Brian, when you'd been giving evidence, I think with Owen Hathway—it might have been the year before last—that we were talking about the effect that poverty has on sports participation at grass-roots level. I think it might have been Owen who had been talking about when parents are aware that their children aren't getting enough food, they might be reluctant to allow them to take part in sports because they don't want to make them exert themselves so much that they get more hungry. Is that something that you're anecdotally seeing more of a problem with? 

11:00

I don't think it's more of a problem. It's as stark as it was then, I guess. The statistics we have show that those in the most deprived areas of Wales are 30 per cent less likely to take part in physical activity and sport. And there are lots of reasons for that, including cost of actual participation, but also those kinds of impacts that sport can make you more hungry if you're very active. 

On the flip side of that, there have been some excellent examples in the sector of Fit and Fed schemes. Obviously that was an injection of support directly for those kinds of initiatives. And what some of those schemes found, certainly the ones that rugby ran, were that the parents themselves needed to be fed, not just the children, which was a really tragic state of affairs. 

But it does show, also, what impact sport can make positively here in terms of trying to make people realise that there are opportunities for them, because they do exist, and we've just got to make them affordable. That's the challenge for us in the sector: making the opportunities affordable.

We're going to need to rely far more heavily on the voluntary part of the sector than we have maybe done. Historically we might have—we've probably shifted away from it a little. We're going to have to go back, because the money needs to go further, and volunteers are going to be vital here for us. But it's also good for the volunteers. It's great for their mental health and well-being as well. So, there will need to be a focus on increasing voluntary activity to try and address some of those issues we identified last time when it comes to activity in the most poor areas of Wales. 

Thank you. And since our committee published the report looking at sports participation in those areas that don't have the same benefits and don't always have the same investment, have you had any discussions with the Welsh Government that have arisen from some of the recommendations we made in that report?

They do form part of our continual discussions really, mainly because our new investment approach is predicated on investing in those areas that most need it, and through the sports that children are telling us they most want to do, or currently can't do—latent demand.

So, yes, they do form part of our continual discussions with the Welsh Government. There were a couple in those recommendations that were specific to Government, outside our control or even our influence, really. So they don't, but on the ones that there's an overlap with, we definitely still have regular quarterly meetings with officials and biannual meetings with Tanni and the Minister as well, which form part of the agenda. 

I think the funding model is quite exciting. Obviously, there's evaluation of it as we go forward, but we're moving away from focusing very heavily on medals, because there's lots of research that shows it inspires some people, but it doesn't inspire everybody.

Actually, the funding and support we give to governing bodies and working in partnership is about getting to a different set of people, because if we don't get people being physically active then we don't have any pathways. So, I think that model is really important. And it's interesting to see what's now happening in England. Sport England are making a big announcement this week about changing their funding model. Obviously, they have a different amount of money to us, but, actually, I'd like to think we've had some influence on them. 

Thank you so much. 

Fe wnawn ni symud ymlaen at Tom. 

We'll move on to Tom. 

I'll stick with the cost of living to start. Brian, you mentioned the influence or the effects of the cost-of-living pressures not being felt equally geographically across the country, and that that impacted the decisions you made in terms of how you resourced, and where. Can you give us a flavour of exactly what goes into that decision-making process? Is there some kind of formula that we're looking at that really bakes that in? Can you paint that picture a bit better for us?

A majority—around about 60 per cent—of our income goes out to partners, and those partners vary. They are governing bodies of sport, they are local authorities, they are national partners of some description, or third sector. We treat them differently. There's a model for governing bodies in terms of the data that we hold on them, on sport, and what people are telling us they want to do. Local authorities will be more predicated on the index of multiple deprivation and data from that aspect. And then, on national partners, it's a bit more difficult, because we don't hold specific data on national partners. So, a national partner, for example, would be StreetGames, Urdd Gobaith Cymru, Disability Sport Wales. We don't hold sport-specific information on those partners, so we need to do it on a principles basis: what are they trying to achieve against our strategy and the vision for sport? So, there are three methods of investing. 

11:05

And in terms of those national partners—you mentioned some of them there—are you ensuring, from your perspective, that they're doing work in some of those geographic areas of deprivation that you've identified, or is it just a principles-based model?  

Most of them are national. So, the Urdd do work—incredible work, in fact—nationally and not just through the Welsh language either, but, importantly, they do it through the Welsh language at the same time. So, most of them are national. The local or more regional work is done through our reactive grant scheme that anyone can apply to, provided they're constituted or have a bank account that has more than one signatory, they're not a local authority—clubs, for example. So, a lot of that regional or local stuff is done through our reactive application schemes. 

But the other aspect that we launched, two years ago now, that we're still working on is the sport partnerships model. So, we've launched Actif North Wales. West Wales is now set up as well with Swansea University as the lead, and just appointed a new chair, I believe, of that partnership, and there are plans for three others—central south, Gwent and mid. And those are the aspects that, hopefully, the national partners and governing bodies will work with to work in those regions, and do some specific work against the vision for sport.

Thanks. I wanted to move on to inflation and the impact that's having on your budget. You mentioned the increase in capital costs by about 25 per cent. Can you give us an indication of the impact that inflation is having on your budget, and perhaps on other things that we wouldn't, on the surface, think about? 

As I said earlier, about 60 per cent goes out to partners, so the impact is being felt by them, if you like, for 60 per cent of our budget. The remainder in-house budget, we're trying to be pragmatic with what we do; we're trying to save costs. Some of our commitments, though, are long-term commitments, like the utility costs of our centre in Cardiff. They're difficult to change, difficult to have an impact on. Although we're not not necessarily wedded to pay increases in the public sector the Welsh Government might make, we tend to align with that, so there's an issue there, going forward. But I'd say we're pretty lean, and therefore it is difficult when costs go up, and there is no doubt that we have passed a little on to our customer base. So, catering costs at the national centre have gone up. Gym membership we've managed to keep down, or keep static, but there will come a time next year when we'll need to look at that. So, it is difficult, but I'm quite proud of our internal mechanisms and our finance team especially, and the way they do manage to make the budget that we do receive work. We're very fortunate we get lottery support, but there's a limit on how much lottery you can use on yourself as a distributor. So, that's not always the answer for us.

Yes. And you mentioned there passing some of the costs on, or some of the inflationary pressures on. Is that not undermining, if you like, the very first point that we made about the impact that's having on people who can least afford it? 

There's no doubt that those inequalities have been exacerbated not only by COVID previously, but now by the cost-of-living crisis—100 per cent. But, for me, that supports our decision three years ago to change the investment model to make it focused on those areas of society that need public support most when it comes to sport and physical activity. Sport, let's face it, is brilliant at doing what it's always done—traditional sport—especially in Wales. We've got a very, very proud track record, but if we need to make a difference wider than just sports participation per se, we've got to invest in the right areas, and that's what the three investment streams try to do. It's only just started, though, so we're not going to see the impact for a while, but, for me, it supports the board's decision three years ago to change the way we invest in the sector.

Sorry, could I just add really briefly that it's what people want to do? We've got the stats that show that people want to do walking. If they're doing outdoor activities, it's canoeing and kayaking. We say 'sport', but also we mean it in a wider, physical activity sense, because some people want to do organised sport and some people want to do more the physical activity. So, I think, again, the data that we're getting through is really helpful in identifying what people want to do and what they would like to do and that they can't currently do. It's joining all those things up together.

11:10

Yes. I suspect it's too simplistic, but there's a direct correlation between the level of investment, capital and revenue in sport, and levels of participation—is there? Can we say that?

I think it's a very simple equation. I'd add to it that, if that was the only equation we had at our disposal, we wouldn't make enough impact. We need to bring in other avenues of support as well that are available to Government—cross-sector support—because that will make a huge difference. We're about to launch, this side of Christmas, the social return on investment figures we've got from Sheffield Hallam University. They're incredibly encouraging. They're no surprise to us who work in the industry, that sport contributes massively above just purely for sport reasons. It contributes so much to the wider economy, to the health and well-being of the nation—I mean, staggering figures. For every pound, £4.44 return on social investment. That's massive. But it is a complex picture. So, imagine what that figure would be if we had a bit more joined-up thinking between education and public health and sport. It could be staggeringly impressive. So, there is a correlation, for sure. I would like to see a more complex correlation with other sectors of Government.

Some of the reassurance is that the data that's coming through on social return fits in with lots of other worldwide research on the impact of sport and physical activity. And the numbers are really important. But Brian's absolutely right—we've got to be looking at in-school, after-school. We've got to join it all up.

So, with diminishing funds, we're seeing an increase in prominence or emphasis from you and others on these other elements that need to be understood and valued and utilised.

There is definitely a bit of recalibration and the investment approach—

But I think that was happening anyway. Regardless of cost of living, I think we recognise it's really important to tie all those things up together.

Sure, but probably cost of living has accelerated the necessity to do that, I'd imagine. Or is that too cynical, maybe?

No. I said earlier those inequalities have been exacerbated, so it probably does defend it. Whether then we need to shift the model even further, potentially, the model is currently what it is in terms of the gravitas we give to different areas of inequality that we're trying to address. But that's the beauty of the model. We can change. We do annual funding to partners, so we can change the model. It has been difficult to change it as it is, because some sports, as I said earlier as well, are really good at what they do, and they want to keep doing it, but we're forcing a little bit of change on them. And the sector has responded magnificently, because no-one likes change in the round, but we have asked our partners to change quite a bit. We could do it even further if necessary.

Sure. I am taking liberties here, I know—just one last question, if I may. You mentioned annual funding. Of course, as somebody who's worked in the third sector previously, annual funding is an anathema, because you don't know what's happening from one year to another. So, I'm sure, as an organisation, you would be concerned if you were subject to annual funding. So, how are you managing that?

It's a very good point. Following the last election to the Senedd, we had a term-of-government remit letter and indicative funding, but, obviously, that's now under discussion anyway. So, it is always difficult. When we do make awards, we give indicative, long-term figures, but everyone applies every year.

Building on that, then, how would a flat or reduced budget in 2024-25 impact your work?

We've done some modelling. Again, with 60 per cent of our income going out, it will be very difficult not to pass some of that change, if necessary, on to partners. We will try and absorb as much as possible, and our initial guesstimate, if you like—we had a meeting with the board, and we've got a board coming up at the end of this month where we'll present some further detail—we guesstimate we could probably absorb circa 50 per cent of it, if there was a cut. If it stands still, the inflationary impact we might be able to absorb and not pass on. But if there was a cut, we would have to pass on probably about 50 per cent of it, I think.

11:15

Okay. Diolch. Moving on to participation, your 2022-23 report looking at school-age participation identified an 'alarming drop', in your words. Do you think that you have the resources that would be sufficient to drive the change that's necessary to address that alarming drop?

Bluntly, no. Again, earlier I talked about the collaboration and co-operative work with other areas of Government. And we did some pilots—we did twelve pilots—with schools in terms of activity beyond the school day last year, and the results were incredibly positive. And what we've done since then is work with colleagues in education to see how we can extend that and make it more widely available. Sadly, that has come to a bit of a pause. Were that to be reinitiated and the momentum gained again, I think we could, but it would need partnering with other areas of Government, like education.

The feedback and the narratives from the 12 pilots were incredibly positive about what children were doing after school, how they were then attentive—behavioural improvements, attendance improvements were fantastic. And we chose the areas specifically to try and address significant problems that had been identified in those areas. So, I think, without that collaboration, it will be difficult to drive the change that's necessary.

And I've seen some of that first-hand in terms of schools that I visited, in terms of ability to concentrate, behaviour, academic achievement. If you go to a school, you can always tell the child that they don't want you to talk to for different reasons, whether it's behaviour, and actually talking to young people about the difference they felt, the confidence—. But this lifelong love of sport needs to be in-built from a really young age, recognising that schools can't do everything, because there is responsibility from parents and community. But school has a big impact on how young people see themselves.

And some of these inequalities go way back—go back as long as I've been alive—in terms of how girls engage and don't engage, and where the drop-out is, experience of lessons. There's the timing, of how much time you have within a lesson to deliver something that's meaningful and builds that love. What I would hope is that everyone goes through school loving physical activity, but, actually, it's how you teach people to understand it's important. So, if they don't love it, they need to understand how important it is to their future lives.

Just to follow up on that very point, I think you make a very good point in terms of the problems. What's the solution? How do you get people to love sport from that early age?

Some of the positives we found from our survey, certainly the schools sport survey, are really encouraging and optimistic. Ninety-three per cent of the children surveyed said they wanted to do more sport. That's a great opportunity. That is something to build on. Clearly, we need to grasp that opportunity.

There's also a huge unmet demand, which is from around about 56 per cent of young people up to the age of 16—their demands are not being met from the offer. So, we need to change the offer or look at additionality to the offer, so some of these urban sports—skateboarding, BMX, climbing—these sports that the International Olympic Committee have suddenly decided that seem to be important to them.

So, from your perspective, changing the narrative, if you like, around young people's engagement with sport could be built around changing the nature of the sports that—

Yes, listening to what they're saying. That's what the school sport survey's designed to do, to ask them what it is they want to do. Ashamedly, we've not invested much in basketball over the years, as a body. But it's coming out as the No. 1 sport that young people want to do. So, we have to change it, and that's what the investment approach does. It responds as much as it can to what young people are telling us they want to do, what their needs are and what their demands are. 

But also, I think we've got a responsibility, if you take a body like basketball, it's helping them build the capacity and capability as well, not just suddenly saying, 'Right, we're going to give you this huge increase', because, actually, we need to help and support that development. And I think Brian's right: some of what we see as the newer sports are really exciting in terms of how they engage young people, how they support each other, less structure. There are so many opportunities in terms of that, but some of that comes back to facilities and place as well. Skate parks have to be in the right place with the right environment around them; people have to feel safe. So, there are lots of spinning plates.

11:20

Sorry. Really sorry, one final question. If your strategy, if you like, is to follow the popularity—a demand-led approach, if you like—how are you supporting those sports that perhaps fall out of favour or fall out of fashion and may come in the future? How do you ensure that those structures you mention, which are in place in those sports, don't fall away?

I was going to add to Tanni's points, really, as well, so I'm glad you've asked that because it is important we don't throw the baby out with the bath water here. Some of the traditional sports do an incredible amount of work and the quantities of people taking part in those sports are significant. So, we have to try and strike that balance and make sure we don't just ignore that area, otherwise you could be making gains in some areas of society and sports and ignoring the others, and we try not to do that. So, that's why the model does give cognisance to the fact that popularity of existing sports does feature, but the cake has been the same size. So, we're trying to do more with the same size cake so it does get redistributed, and that's what I meant earlier when I said change is difficult for some people. You're effectively just redistributing the same amount of money to try and do more, and that means some will be getting less. But we should not ignore them, because they do form an important part of the findings we're getting from the school sport survey. 

It's rather wonderful that the public gallery is actually full of young people at the moment. So, I know that you've got your—[Inaudible.]

I'm just putting a hand up. Who wants to do basketball?

But, actually, as we're talking about young people's participation in sport, I'm really glad that there are so many young people here to be able to actually listen to what is being said, because it is for all of you, of course, that we want to be getting this right. 

I know, I know. I like to think of myself as being young, but I'm really not. It's wonderful to have you here, really.

Mae'n ffantasig. 

It's wonderful. 

In fact, and to come back to that point, because we've spoken before about the emotional relationship that young people have with sport, particularly in school, and you were talking, Tanni, about the lifelong relationship with sport, with physical activity, and that love that needs to be nurtured, and, sometimes, how that isn't always nurtured in school, possibly because—. Do you think that there's more that could be done? Is there more support that could be made available so that, for those young people who don't see themselves as being very good at sport, they can still have a love of it and that it's not all about being the best, actually, it's just taking part that can be something that you can love to do? I'm a runner and I'm terrible at running. Do you think there's more that could be done with that kind of thing?

I think so. I think that's where the funding model is quite useful, actually, in terms of moving away from targets—so, us moving away from Commonwealth Games targets for medals—because it's recognising that—. In the past, we've definitely valued probably sporty boys more than sporty girls. There are years and years of things that we're dealing with here that we need to overcome. But that's where, I think, also where the sports partnerships have an impact, in terms of that local knowledge and understanding; it's connecting to people. People come in to sport at lots of different times and, even as someone who loves sport and physical activity, you drop in and out depending what's happening in work and what's happening with your family life and all those different things. And, I think, in the past, we looked at it in a very binary way: people were either sporty or not sporty, and I think what we're able to do is be much smarter in understanding those differences about how people are able to participate, which, I think, is really important to be able to do.

If I may just add as well, my predecessor, Sarah Powell, always used to say, 'Everyone has a personal podium' and that's what we're trying to provide. And a couple of other things, we ran a summit last year, and we brought over some colleagues from Norway who, seemingly, are on the same journey as us, in terms of trying to provide an inclusive sport offer, and one of the things that resonated with us from one of the keynote speakers was, 'Stop looking for the talented athlete, and look for the talent in everyone.' That sums up what we're trying to do with some of the work with governing bodies.

And then the final piece is we've literally launched this week, when it comes to schools, something called Citbag, which is a resource for teachers in terms of how they can present sport in a more inclusive way for everyone, not just those who might be regarded as sporty at the outset. So, there are a few things there that resonate with your point, I think.

11:25

I think PE is a really difficult subject to deliver, because everyone comes at it from different starting points, a different experience. If you've played that sport outside school, if you're six or seven, you might seem to be supertalented, whereas, actually, you've just had more exposure to it. So, getting that balance to include everybody is not an easy thing to do, but it's really important to do that. My own experience is that I tried about 10 more sports before I found wheelchair racing, and it was only because I was rubbish at everything else that my PE teacher was just like, 'Oh, go and do that.' But, that's really important to find—. And I wasn't good for years, but it's finding something that you enjoy. So, you need that exposure to lots of different things.

And more young people were walking into the room just as they were actually hearing what I think is an inspiring thing to be hearing from you, about how even for people who excel, it's not always about you taking to something straight away or that you're good at every single sport; it's finding what's right for you and nurturing that love. So, I think that was really valuable for the young people who've just come in to be able to hear that as well.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Gwnawn ni symud at Llyr.

Thank you very much. We'll move to Llyr.

You mentioned Norway being on a similar journey, but, of course, I have seen in the papers that their funding is three times higher than it is for you here in Wales. So, maybe the journey is the same, but it's comparatively easier, I'd imagine, if you've got more resource. Anyway—

I think you could say the same about New Zealand, as well. Funding is—. But they also are separate countries in the Olympic movement, whereas we're part of UK, but that is—

Well, hey, now you're talking my language, but there we are, we won't go there. [Laughter.] Okay, coming back to schools, then, clearly, we have a new school curriculum, so what opportunities are there there for us to amplify and accelerate, maybe, interest in sport or participation in sport, using the new curriculum?

It's a real challenge. We, obviously, come under the area of learning and experience of health and well-being. It is about bringing teachers and the education system on a journey with us, so Citbag, as a digital resource, is one of the efforts we're making to try and allow teachers and the educational establishments to focus on sport in that area of learning and experience. But there is a risk that some teachers who don't look at sport in a positive light might not give enough focus to it. It comes back, again, to us working more collaboratively with our education colleagues if possible on this, and we are making some strides.

The thing that I mentioned earlier that's on pause, the daily active offer, is key, because that is wider than just the curriculum; that is how you get to school, what you do at break times, what you do after school, and then, hopefully, with the curriculum as well, teachers providing sport or physical activity as an offer as part of that area of learning. It's crucial. We are talking about future generations here, and I'm sure you hear a lot about the importance of education, but, for us, it's a key plank of our work.

You mentioned what you do after school, and the active beyond the school day pilots. I know the committee has had a view in the past about making greater use of some of the resources that schools have for the wider community after school hours. What are the pilots telling us, and, again, without maybe greater investment, because I suppose there's a cost in terms of keeping some of these facilities open and accessible beyond school times, what can be achieved?

I'd argue it's a false economy not to do it, because of the results we'll get from the social return on investment when we do launch them this side of Christmas will show that if we don't do it, the cost is enormous, rather than not the cost of giving the money or the resource in the first place. I think the costs are not high. We're making use of something that's already been built. The Government deserves some credit for the twenty-first century schools programme, that it's continued, and the facilities that are being built are fantastic. There's the community schools programme that we've now tapped into in terms of resource availability as well, on the capital side. So, it would be a false economy not to, and I think there's an appetite for it.

The 12 pilots—again, as I mentioned—demonstrated the difference it makes to those children that are engaged in activities after school on a school site. One of the things we do know is about rurality and the challenges of rurality. If the children are already at school, then you need to provide on the school site, rather than transport them around everywhere, because that is a false economy. So, I really want to increase that momentum that we garnered through the daily active initial discussions with education if we can, because a lot of work has gone into it, and I think the benefits are significant.

11:30

I can't remember off the top of my head, but the percentage of sports facilities that are behind school gates is significant.

I'll send you the figure.

But it's actually quite surprising to people who aren't involved in sport, so Brian is right in terms of: the facilities are there; we should be much smarter in how we use them. And I think if young people can do activities outside the school hours in spaces that they know, there's a lot of connection to that. As you leave school—. It's a bit like if you go and visit your GP and your GP tells you you need to do more exercise: the further you are away from your GP surgery, your connection to it falls way. So, some of the success that's seen, certainly in England, in terms of social prescribing and actually having physical activity built into GP surgeries, you're literally walked out of the surgery into a physical activity programme, and it's those connections. So, I think we need to be looking at some of that to see how we can bring that into schools. I mean, personal view, I'd extend the school day; I know that's not particularly easy to do. But, actually, we've got to be really thoughtful about what we do to change the pattern.

It's worth pointing out that in those pilots, it's not about asking teachers to do more—

Yes, sorry, yes. Yes, yes.

—at the end of the school day. It is about bringing people in to provide the offer that the young people have asked for. So, some of the sports in the pilots were very niche, but that is what was being asked for, and you get a positive response.

That's all right, my parents were teachers.

Yes, it's not teachers, yes. [Laughter.]

Okay, just finally on participation rates, then. There are many factors that obviously play into this. To what extent do you think there's a link between participation in sport and the ability to watch sport on television? Because we, as a committee, have looked at—. Recently, we were scrutinising Westminster, the UK Government Minister on sports broadcasting, amongst other things, and more and more sports are going behind a pay wall, making them increasingly inaccessible for people, especially in a cost-of-living crisis. Is there any research out there, or do you have any inclination as to whether that can have a direct impact? Because I think of cricket, for example; when cricket went over to Sky, all of a sudden, it just disappeared off my radar. So, I'm just wondering whether there is anything out there that tells us a story of that impact.

I've seen data on how young people consume sport and other programmes, so they don't tend to watch in a linear way any more. If this then is dependent on what access to phones or internet they've got, and cost of living is having an impact on that, but actually, young people are just consuming things in a very different way. There's a huge increase in what they watch on YouTube, clips, not necessarily watching a whole programme, or they box-set programmes, and that will have some influence on sport. [Inaudible.]—if you can't watch it, I do think you need to see some of it to be able to connect to it.

And you can see it, of course, but it wouldn't necessarily be live, because if you're watching it back on something, then it doesn't have the same appeal, I'd imagine.