Y Cyfarfod Llawn - Y Bumed Senedd

Plenary - Fifth Senedd

03/05/2017

Cyfarfu’r Cynulliad am 13:30 gyda’r Dirprwy Lywydd (Ann Jones) yn y Gadair.

The Assembly met at 13:30 with the Deputy Presiding Officer (Ann Jones) in the Chair.

Good afternoon, everybody. We will move on to the items on our agenda this afternoon.

Prynhawn da, bawb. Symudwn at yr eitemau ar ein hagenda y prynhawn yma.

1. 1. Cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Gyllid a Llywodraeth Leol
1. 1. Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government

Mae [R] yn dynodi bod yr Aelod wedi datgan buddiant. Mae [W] yn dynodi bod y cwestiwn wedi’i gyflwyno yn Gymraeg.

[R] signifies the Member has declared an interest. [W] signifies that the question was tabled in Welsh.

The first item is questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government, and question 1 this afternoon is Mark Reckless.

Yr eitem gyntaf yw cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Gyllid a Llywodraeth Leol, a daw cwestiwn 1 y prynhawn yma gan Mark Reckless.

Seddau lle na Chynhelir Etholiad

Uncontested Seats

1. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am nifer y seddau lle na chynhelir etholiad yn etholiadau llywodraeth leol Cymru? OAQ(5)0126(FLG)

1. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the number of uncontested seats in Welsh local government elections? OAQ(5)0126(FLG)

Llywydd, diolch. I regret any uncontested seat at a democratic election. On Thursday this week, some 7 per cent of the principal authority places will be filled without a contest. The percentage in 2012 was 12 per cent.

Llywydd, diolch. Mae unrhyw sedd nad yw’n cael ei hymladd mewn etholiad democrataidd yn peri siom i mi. Ddydd Iau yr wythnos hon, bydd oddeutu 7 y cant o seddau’r prif awdurdodau yn cael eu llenwi heb wrthwynebiad. Roedd y ganran yn 2012 yn 12 y cant.

I thank the Cabinet Secretary for his answer and congratulate the 92 councillors who have been elected unopposed, many of whom may be well known in tight-knit communities. He said 12 per cent were elected unopposed in 2012. The only figures I have are actually 8 per cent in 2012 and 2008, so I’m not sure what explains that discrepancy. I wonder, in light of the experience in Scotland, whether the Cabinet Secretary thinks the electoral system and the change they made in Scotland is a factor, and would he encourage councillors elected tomorrow to consider what system is appropriate for their council?

Diolch i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet am ei ateb, ac rwy’n llongyfarch y 92 o gynghorwyr a etholwyd yn ddiwrthwynebiad, gyda llawer ohonynt yn wynebau cyfarwydd mewn cymunedau clòs o bosibl. Dywedodd fod 12 y cant wedi’u hethol yn ddiwrthwynebiad yn 2012. Yr unig ffigurau sydd gennyf yw 8 y cant yn 2012 a 2008, felly nid wyf yn siŵr beth sy’n gyfrifol am yr anghysondeb hwnnw. Tybed, yng ngoleuni’r profiad yn yr Alban, a yw Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet o’r farn fod y system etholiadol a’r newid a wnaethant yn yr Alban yn ffactor, ac a fyddai’n annog y cynghorwyr a fydd yn cael eu hethol yfory i ystyried pa system sy’n addas ar gyfer eu cyngor?

Well, Llywydd, I’m aware of the system in Scotland. I don’t think it’s possible to attribute directly to the system the fact that they have had contested elections there, because, of course, they have larger areas, with larger numbers of councillors as a result. Our White Paper, published in January of this year, proposes to allow a choice in the way that elections are conducted—the method of election to local authorities. That consultation has now closed, and I will hope to make a statement to the Assembly before the end of this summer term on the outcome of that consultation.

Wel, Llywydd, rwy’n ymwybodol o’r system yn yr Alban. Nid wyf o’r farn y gellir honni bod y system wedi arwain yn uniongyrchol at y ffaith eu bod wedi cael etholiadau a ymleddir yno, gan fod ganddynt ardaloedd mwy o faint, wrth gwrs, gyda mwy o gynghorwyr o ganlyniad. Mae ein Papur Gwyn, a gyhoeddwyd ym mis Ionawr eleni, yn argymell caniatáu dewis o ran y ffordd y cynhelir etholiadau—y dull o ethol i awdurdodau lleol. Mae’r ymgynghoriad wedi dod i ben erbyn hyn, a gobeithiaf allu gwneud datganiad i’r Cynulliad cyn diwedd tymor yr haf ynglŷn â chanlyniad yr ymgynghoriad hwnnw.

Regarding uncontested seats, all seats in Swansea East are being contested, although my feet probably wished they weren’t all being contested. This includes Conservative candidates from Maesteg, Llandeilo, Cimla and Neath, and a UKIP candidate from Ammanford. Obviously, not as good as Swansea West, where they have a Conservative candidate from London. Will the Cabinet Secretary consider bringing in legislation so that you must actually live in the council area that you are standing in?

Mewn perthynas â seddi un ymgeisydd, mae pob sedd yn Nwyrain Abertawe yn cael ei hymladd, er y byddai’n well gan fy nhraed pe na bai hynny’n wir, yn ôl pob tebyg. Mae hyn yn cynnwys ymgeiswyr Ceidwadol o Faesteg, Llandeilo, Cimla a Chastell-nedd, ac ymgeisydd UKIP o Rydaman. Yn amlwg, nid yw hynny cystal â Gorllewin Abertawe, lle y mae ganddynt ymgeisydd Ceidwadol o Lundain. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ystyried cyflwyno deddfwriaeth sy’n ei gwneud yn ofynnol eich bod yn byw yn ardal y cyngor rydych yn sefyll i gael eich ethol iddo?

Well, Llywydd, I think it is always preferable when candidates in local elections have an identity with that area and that they are known to local people. There are already a series of qualification tests that people have to pass, including living, or working, or having a business in the area, and it’s for returning officers to make sure that any candidates meet those qualifying criteria. But Mike Hedges makes an interesting point, and I’m quite sure it will be one that will be known to people when they come to cast their ballots on Thursday.

Wel, Llywydd, credaf ei bod bob amser yn well pan fo’r ymgeiswyr mewn etholiadau lleol yn uniaethu â’r ardal honno a’u bod yn gyfarwydd i’r bobl leol. Eisoes, ceir cyfres o brofion cymhwyso y mae’n rhaid i bobl eu pasio, gan gynnwys byw, gweithio, neu fod â busnes yn yr ardal, a chyfrifoldeb y swyddogion canlyniadau yw gwneud yn siŵr fod pob ymgeisydd yn bodloni’r meini prawf hynny. Ond gwna Mike Hedges bwynt diddorol, ac rwy’n eithaf sicr y bydd pobl yn ymwybodol o hynny wrth fwrw eu pleidlais ddydd Iau.

I think some of us may feel it’s a scandal that you stand for election in one party’s name, change to another party and then go uncontested. And some of us may also feel that, at the local level, in the case of independents who don’t stand on any manifesto, then go into cabinet and enact policies for the whole of those counties, it’s far better to stand for the colours you want to represent the people, and to stand for that, and be prepared to stand for election for that.

But the point about Scotland is well made. Since the introduction of the single transferrable vote, there has not been one uncontested local election in Scotland. And, clearly, widening the wards, allowing people to think, ‘Well, I’m not up against a councillor who’s been there for 35 years, and is a well-known farmer’, allows you to put together a collection, a coalition, of people. It gets different people elected, younger people, more women, and a greater range of people. I welcome the fact that there is a choice being proposed for STV for local councils, but wouldn’t it be better if the Welsh Government led and said that it is better for local democracy in Wales that STV is for all of Wales?

Credaf fod rhai ohonom yn teimlo ei bod yn warthus eich bod yn sefyll etholiad yn enw un blaid, yn newid i blaid arall ac yna’n cael eich ethol yn ddiwrthwynebiad. Ac efallai fod rhai ohonom hefyd yn teimlo, ar y lefel leol, yn achos ymgeiswyr annibynnol nad ydynt yn sefyll ar sail unrhyw faniffesto, ac yna’n mynd yn aelodau o gabinet ac yn gweithredu polisïau ar gyfer y siroedd hynny yn eu cyfanrwydd, y byddai’n llawer gwell sefyll dros y lliwiau rydych yn awyddus iddynt gynrychioli’r bobl, ac i sefyll dros hynny, a bod yn barod i sefyll etholiad dros hynny.

Ond mae’r pwynt ynglŷn â’r Alban yn bwynt da. Ers cyflwyno’r bleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy, nid oes unrhyw etholiadau lleol un ymgeisydd wedi bod yn yr Alban. Ac yn amlwg, mae ehangu’r wardiau, gan alluogi pobl i feddwl, ‘Wel, nid wyf yn cystadlu yn erbyn cynghorydd sydd wedi bod yno ers 35 mlynedd, ac sy’n ffermwr adnabyddus’, yn caniatáu i chi greu casgliad, clymblaid, o bobl. Mae’n sicrhau bod pobl wahanol yn cael eu hethol, pobl iau, mwy o fenywod, ac ystod ehangach o bobl. Croesawaf y ffaith fod dewis yn cael ei argymell mewn perthynas â’r bleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy ar gyfer cynghorau lleol, ond oni fyddai’n well pe bai Llywodraeth Cymru yn arwain yn hyn o beth, ac yn dweud ei bod yn well i ddemocratiaeth leol yng Nghymru fod y bleidlais sengl drosglwyddadwy ar gael ar gyfer Cymru gyfan?

Well, Llywydd, the way in which the White Paper has been constructed is to allow a series of choices to be made by local authorities themselves—people who know their areas, and are able to design systems that fit best with their needs and circumstances. And that principle runs right through the White Paper, and I think it rightly applies to the choice of election method, as it will to other aspects.

Turning to the first point that Simon Thomas made, he will know that the White Paper also includes a proposal that anybody who stands for election who is a member of a political party must make that affiliation known to local electorates, even when they choose to stand as an independent, and I think that is right and proper for the very reasons that he outlined earlier.

Wel, Llywydd, mae’r ffordd y lluniwyd y Papur Gwyn yn caniatáu i’r awdurdodau lleol eu hunain wneud cyfres o ddewisiadau—pobl sy’n adnabod eu hardaloedd, ac sy’n gallu llunio’r systemau mwyaf addas ar gyfer eu hanghenion a’u hamgylchiadau. Ac mae’r egwyddor honno’n rhan annatod o’r Papur Gwyn, a chredaf ei bod yn hollol iawn ei bod yn berthnasol i’r dewis o ddull etholiad, fel y mae’n berthnasol i agweddau eraill.

O ran y pwynt cyntaf a wnaeth Simon Thomas, bydd yn gwybod bod y Papur Gwyn hefyd yn cynnwys argymhelliad fod yn rhaid i unrhyw un sy’n sefyll etholiad ac sy’n aelod o blaid wleidyddol sicrhau bod yr etholwyr lleol yn ymwybodol o’r cysylltiad hwnnw, hyd yn oed pan fyddant yn dewis sefyll fel ymgeisydd annibynnol, a chredaf fod hynny’n gywir a phriodol am yr union resymau a amlinellodd yn gynharach.

Pwerau Trethu

Taxation Powers

2. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet roi'r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am sut y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn defnyddio ei phwerau trethu i gefnogi busnesau'r stryd fawr yng Nghymru? OAQ(5)0115(FLG)

2. Will the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on how the Welsh Government is using its taxation powers to support high street businesses? OAQ(5)0115(FLG)

Dirprwy Lywydd, as part of the £210 million provided in Wales to help businesses with their tax bills, £10 million has been provided in a dedicated scheme to assist those on the high street. The calling of a general election will not delay the provision of that help in Wales.

Dirprwy Lywydd, fel rhan o’r £210 miliwn a ddarparwyd yng Nghymru i roi cymorth i fusnesau gyda’u biliau treth, mae £10 miliwn wedi cael ei ddarparu mewn cynllun penodol i gynorthwyo’r busnesau sydd ar y stryd fawr. Ni fydd galw etholiad cyffredinol yn gohirio’r cymorth hwnnw yng Nghymru.

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary. Since being elected last year, I’ve regularly been in contact with small businesses and communities across my constituency, and small business representatives, such as the Mold business forum, to take on board their concerns and to bring that to people’s attention to take action where needed. Most recently, I’ve been working closely with representatives in Holywell, whose town centre has been left reeling by bank closures on the back of one another. But, despite this, I think there’s an energy and enthusiasm there to turn the town’s fortunes around, with exciting initiatives such as a teenage market to encourage young entrepreneurs. And just down the road in Flint, I’ve recently met with business owners along with my MP counterpart. A lot of these have been hit by business tax revaluation. I know that’s being addressed, and they’ve repealed that, but they’re also feeling the pinch of the temporary drop in footfall as a consequence of the regeneration work that is taking place and is well under way in the town centre. It’s brought to my attention that we need to think outside the box about how we can create healthy high streets for the future. So, Cabinet Secretary, can I ask if you’ll give consideration to how the Welsh Government’s taxation and other new powers could be used to more innovative ends, in order to better sustain our high streets and encourage and allow them to prosper in the future?

Diolch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Ers cael fy ethol y llynedd, rwyf wedi bod mewn cysylltiad rheolaidd â busnesau bach a chymunedau ledled fy etholaeth, a chynrychiolwyr busnesau bach, megis fforwm busnes yr Wyddgrug, i wrando ar eu pryderon ac i dynnu sylw pobl atynt er mwyn gweithredu lle y bo angen. Yn fwyaf diweddar, rwyf wedi bod yn gweithio’n agos gyda chynrychiolwyr yn Nhreffynnon, lle y mae canol y dref wedi dioddef yn enbyd wrth i’r banciau gau, un ar ôl y llall. Ond er hynny, credaf fod egni a brwdfrydedd yno i wrthdroi ffawd y dref, gyda mentrau cyffrous fel y farchnad i bobl ifanc yn eu harddegau er mwyn annog entrepreneuriaid ifanc. Ac i lawr y ffordd yn y Fflint, cyfarfûm â pherchnogion busnesau yn ddiweddar gyda fy AS cyfatebol. Mae llawer o’r rhain wedi dioddef o ganlyniad i ailbrisio trethi busnes. Gwn fod hynny’n cael sylw, ac maent wedi diddymu hynny, ond maent hefyd yn teimlo effaith y gostyngiad dros dro yn nifer yr ymwelwyr o ganlyniad i’r gwaith adfywio sydd wedi bod ar y gweill yng nghanol y dref. Tynnwyd fy sylw at y ffaith fod angen i ni feddwl yn greadigol ynglŷn â sut y gallwn greu stryd fawr iach ar gyfer y dyfodol. Felly, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a gaf fi ofyn i chi ystyried sut y gellid defnyddio pwerau trethi a phwerau newydd eraill Llywodraeth Cymru at ddibenion mwy arloesol, er mwyn cynnal ein strydoedd mawr yn well a’u hannog a chaniatáu iddynt ffynnu yn y dyfodol?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, one of the ways in which I hope we will use our new fiscal responsibilities is to be able to look at the interaction between different forms of taxation in Wales. So, we have non-domestic rates, which fall on local businesses, but we have other forms of taxation, and the Finance Committee looked very carefully during its consideration of land transaction tax, for example, on the way that land transaction tax falls on the commercial sector as well. Historically, these different streams of taxation have rather been treated by Governments as though they had little interaction with one another. We will have a narrower suite of fiscal responsibilities in Wales, but one of the opportunities that that affords us is to be able to look more closely at the way that they interact with one another, and particularly to see how they then impact upon businesses and upon the high street.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, un o’r ffyrdd y gobeithiaf y byddwn yn defnyddio ein cyfrifoldebau cyllidol newydd yw gallu edrych ar y rhyngweithio rhwng y gwahanol fathau o drethi yng Nghymru. Felly, mae gennym drethi annomestig ar gyfer busnesau lleol, ond mae gennym fathau eraill o drethi, a bu’r Pwyllgor Cyllid yn edrych yn ofalus iawn wrth ystyried y dreth trafodiadau tir, er enghraifft, ar y ffordd y mae’r dreth trafodiadau tir yn effeithio ar y sector masnachol hefyd. Yn hanesyddol, mae Llywodraethau wedi trin y ffrydiau treth gwahanol hyn fel pe na bai fawr o ryngweithio rhyngddynt. Bydd gennym gyfres feinach o gyfrifoldebau cyllidol yng Nghymru, ond un o’r cyfleoedd y bydd hynny’n eu rhoi i ni yw’r gallu i edrych yn fanylach ar y ffordd y maent yn rhyngweithio â’i gilydd, yn arbennig er mwyn gweld sut y maent wedyn yn effeithio ar fusnesau ac ar y stryd fawr.

Yes, of course, Cabinet Secretary, we acknowledge the targeted high-street relief scheme, although some of those high-street businesses are still surprised that they are ineligible for it. And those that may be eligible are still finding some difficulty in as much as the Welsh Government’s link to that information on the website is still not working. For those who are perhaps a bit disappointed by the slightly narrow range of support offered, would you be prepared to consider the Welsh Conservative manifesto commitment to reduce income tax in Wales, not just to enhance the income tax cuts introduced by the Conservative Prime Minister in Westminster, which has benefited so many Welsh workers of course, but also to offer material help to those who are high-street employers, very often in partnerships or as sole traders and, of course, who cannot take advantage of the other low Conservative corporation tax rate?

Ie, wrth gwrs, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rydym yn cydnabod y cynllun rhyddhad wedi’i dargedu ar gyfer y stryd fawr, er bod rhai o fusnesau’r stryd fawr yn dal i synnu nad ydynt yn gymwys ar ei gyfer. Ac mae’r rhai a allai fod yn gymwys yn dal i gael peth anhawster gan nad yw’r ddolen ar wefan Llywodraeth Cymru ar gyfer y wybodaeth honno yn gweithio o hyd. Ar gyfer y rhai sydd efallai ychydig yn siomedig gyda’r diffyg amrywiaeth o ran y cymorth a gynigir, a fyddech yn barod i ystyried ymrwymiad maniffesto’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig i ostwng y dreth incwm yng Nghymru, yn hytrach nag ychwanegu’n unig at y toriadau i’r dreth incwm a gyflwynwyd gan y Prif Weinidog Ceidwadol yn San Steffan, sydd wedi bod o fudd i lawer iawn o weithwyr yng Nghymru, wrth gwrs, ond hefyd i gynnig cymorth gwirioneddol i’r cyflogwyr ar y stryd fawr, sy’n aml iawn mewn partneriaethau neu’n unig fasnachwyr, ac nad ydynt, wrth gwrs, yn gallu manteisio ar gyfradd isel arall y Ceidwadwyr ar gyfer y dreth gorfforaeth?

Well, the party that’s in Government in Wales has a manifesto commitment not to raise income tax rates during the lifetime of this Assembly. Voters will be listening very carefully to what the Conservative Party has or has not been willing to say in relation to taxation and I think will be much more worried about the prospects of tax rises under a Conservative Government than they will be by the prospect that has just been outlined by the Member.

Wel, mae gan y blaid sy’n Llywodraeth yng Nghymru ymrwymiad maniffesto i beidio â chodi cyfraddau treth incwm yn ystod oes y Cynulliad hwn. Bydd y pleidleiswyr yn gwrando’n astud iawn ar yr hyn y mae’r Blaid Geidwadol wedi’i ddweud, neu wedi bod yn amharod i’w ddweud mewn perthynas â threthu a chredaf y byddant yn llawer mwy pryderus ynglŷn â’r rhagolwg o godiadau treth o dan Lywodraeth Geidwadol nag y byddant ynglŷn â’r rhagolwg y mae’r Aelod newydd ei amlinellu.

There are some specific risks to Wales as a result of our withdrawal from the European Union, but there are also some opportunities, not least the ability, for instance, to set regional or sub-national rates for VAT, for example on hotel accommodation, to boost our tourism sector, or for house renovation to boost our construction sector. Will the Cabinet Secretary be making an application to have those powers devolved to Wales so that we can have tax levers that will be able to boost our economy?

Mae gadael yr Undeb Ewropeaidd yn peri rhai risgiau penodol i Gymru, ond bydd hefyd yn arwain at rai cyfleoedd, yn enwedig y gallu, er enghraifft, i osod cyfraddau rhanbarthol neu is-genedlaethol ar gyfer TAW, er enghraifft ar lety mewn gwestai, i roi hwb i’n sector twristiaeth, neu ar gyfer adnewyddu tai i roi hwb i’n sector adeiladu. A fydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn gwneud cais i ddatganoli’r pwerau hynny i Gymru er mwyn inni gael ysgogiadau treth a fydd yn rhoi hwb i’n heconomi?

Adam Price is quite right when he refers, I think indirectly, to the fact that the Silk commission ruled out devolution of VAT on the grounds that it wasn’t a workable variable tax within the European Union. Once we are no longer members of the European Union, then VAT, I think, does come back onto the table for debate as a possible devolved tax for Wales because we would be potentially able to use it differentially. Although I’m certainly not at the point that he alluded to in his supplementary question, I do agree with him that this is now a topic that ought properly to be considered both by Government and by others who have an interest in this area.

Mae Adam Price yn llygad ei le wrth gyfeirio, yn anuniongyrchol, rwy’n credu, at y ffaith fod comisiwn Silk wedi diystyru datganoli TAW ar y sail nad oedd yn dreth amrywiol ymarferol o fewn yr Undeb Ewropeaidd. Pan na fyddwn bellach yn aelodau o’r Undeb Ewropeaidd, credaf y dylid aildrafod TAW fel treth y gellid ei datganoli i Gymru gan y gallai fod yn bosibl inni ei defnyddio’n wahaniaethol. Er nad wyf yn cytuno â’r pwynt y cyfeiriodd ato yn ei gwestiwn atodol, cytunaf ag ef fod hwn bellach yn bwnc y dylai’r Llywodraeth, ac eraill sydd â diddordeb yn y maes hwn, ei ystyried yn briodol.

Cwestiynau Heb Rybudd gan Lefarwyr y Pleidiau

Questions Without Notice from Party Spokespeople

We’ll now turn to spokespeople’s questions and first up this afternoon is the Welsh Conservatives’ spokesperson, Janet Finch-Saunders.

Symudwn yn awr at gwestiynau gan y llefarwyr, a llefarydd y Ceidwadwyr Cymreig, Janet Finch-Saunders, sydd gyntaf y prynhawn yma.

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer. I’d like to thank my colleague, Mark Reckless, actually—[Interruption.] I thought that would bring a smile—for raising the issue of uncontested seats, because, actually, as voters go to the polls tomorrow, it is quite a serious issue when one considers that 92 councillors, already elected, will face no contest whatsoever. Eight per cent of Welsh local authority seats are uncontested. In Gwynedd, it’s 30 per cent, with 21 of the 74 seats depriving the electorate of a vote. Of course, in Machynlleth in Powys, a seat has gone uncontested for 37 years.

Now, I realise that all political parties have their own part to play, but, as the local government Cabinet Secretary, do you, like me, endorse Professor Roger Scully’s comments that this simply makes a mockery of democracy? How do you intend to address this for the remainder of the Assembly term and allow our electorate to fully engage in the democratic process?

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd. Hoffwn ddiolch i fy nghyd-Aelod, Mark Reckless, mewn gwirionedd—[Torri ar draws.] Roeddwn yn tybio y byddai hynny’n codi gwên—am godi mater seddi un ymgeisydd, oherwydd, mewn gwirionedd, wrth i’r pleidleiswyr fynd i bleidleisio yfory, mae’n fater eithaf difrifol pan ystyriwch na fydd 92 cynghorydd, a etholwyd eisoes, yn wynebu unrhyw gystadleuaeth o gwbl. Mae wyth y cant o seddi awdurdodau lleol Cymru yn seddi diwrthwynebiad. Yng Ngwynedd, mae’r ffigur hwnnw’n 30 y cant, gydag 21 o’r 74 sedd yn amddifadu etholwyr o bleidlais. Wrth gwrs, mae sedd ym Machynlleth ym Mhowys wedi bod yn ddiwrthwynebiad ers 37 mlynedd.

Nawr, rwy’n sylweddoli fod gan yr holl bleidiau gwleidyddol eu rhan eu hunain i’w chwarae, ond fel Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros lywodraeth leol, a ydych chi, fel minnau, yn cymeradwyo sylwadau’r Athro Roger Scully fod hyn yn gwneud democratiaeth yn destun sbort? Sut rydych yn bwriadu mynd i’r afael â hyn dros weddill tymor y Cynulliad a chaniatáu i’n hetholwyr gymryd rhan lawn yn y broses ddemocrataidd?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, I began my answer to Mark Reckless’s question by expressing my regret that any democratic election doesn’t have a contest and doesn’t offer a choice to the electorate. There are things that Governments are able to do in making elections more attractive, in opening opportunities to people who might be willing to stand, through our diversity in democracy project, and so on, but, in the end, Dirprwy Lywydd, it is political parties that put people up for election. Her own party will put up fewer than half the number of candidates needed to fill the number of councillors that are needed by principal authorities in Wales. So, all political parties in Wales have a responsibility to try to recruit people who are willing to do these difficult jobs, to make them attractive to people. Government has a part to play, but Government is only one part of this jigsaw, and, actually, I believe that political parties themselves are more powerful players.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, dechreuais fy ateb i gwestiwn Mark Reckless drwy fynegi fy siom ynglŷn ag unrhyw etholiad democrataidd sydd heb gystadleuaeth ac nad yw’n cynnig dewis i’r etholwyr. Ceir pethau y gall Llywodraethau eu gwneud i sicrhau bod etholiadau’n fwy deniadol, i roi cyfle i bobl a allai fod yn barod i sefyll, drwy ein prosiect amrywiaeth mewn democratiaeth, ac yn y blaen, ond yn y pen draw, Dirprwy Lywydd, pleidiau gwleidyddol sy’n cyflwyno pobl i sefyll mewn etholiad. Bydd ei phlaid ei hun yn cynnig llai na hanner nifer yr ymgeiswyr sydd eu hangen i lenwi nifer y cynghorwyr sydd eu hangen ar y prif awdurdodau yng Nghymru. Felly, mae gan bob plaid wleidyddol yng Nghymru gyfrifoldeb i geisio recriwtio pobl sy’n barod i wneud y swyddi anodd hyn, i’w gwneud yn ddeniadol i bobl. Mae gan y Llywodraeth ran i’w chwarae, ond un rhan o’r jig-so yn unig yw’r Llywodraeth, ac mewn gwirionedd, credaf fod y pleidiau gwleidyddol eu hunain yn chwarae rhan fwy pwerus.

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary, and, of course, I hasten to mention the number of uncontested community council seats, which run into the hundreds.

Cabinet Secretary, over the past few months and leading up to the local government elections, political parties of all colours—and, as my colleague over there has said, except the independents—have been outlining their manifesto pledges and promises to which the electorate can then hold them to account in the future. The Welsh Conservatives are very proud of the manifesto on which they stand and the pledges therein, but why is it that the party of national Government here in Wales, with responsibility for local government in Wales, has failed to even produce a national manifesto for local government elections?

Diolch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ac wrth gwrs, dylwn sôn hefyd am nifer y seddi cyngor cymuned sy’n ddiwrthwynebiad, sy’n cyrraedd y cannoedd.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, dros y misoedd diwethaf a chyn yr etholiadau llywodraeth leol, mae pleidiau gwleidyddol o bob lliw—ac fel y dywedodd fy nghyd-Aelod draw fan acw, ac eithrio’r ymgeiswyr annibynnol—wedi bod yn amlinellu’r addewidion maniffesto y gall eu hetholwyr eu dwyn i gyfrif yn eu cylch yn y dyfodol. Mae’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn falch iawn o’r maniffesto y maent yn ei arddel a’r addewidion ynddo, ond pam fod plaid y Llywodraeth genedlaethol yma yng Nghymru, sy’n gyfrifol am lywodraeth leol yng Nghymru, wedi methu cynhyrchu maniffesto cenedlaethol ar gyfer yr etholiadau llywodraeth leol?

The Labour Party goes into local elections with manifestos right across Wales, explaining to local electorates exactly what a Labour-controlled authority would offer to them. They do that against the background of a White Paper in which this Government has set out our national policies for local authorities in the future.

I agree with what the Member says—that it is a very important contribution to democracy that all parties make when they put proposals in front of electors and allow those people to make up their minds between the different prospectuses that are there in front of them, and we will do well, I think, to allow people to make those decisions when they go to the ballot box tomorrow.

Mae’r Blaid Lafur yn ymladd etholiadau lleol gyda maniffestos ledled Cymru, ac yn esbonio i’r etholaethau lleol beth yn union y byddai awdurdod a reolir gan Lafur yn ei gynnig iddynt. Maent yn gwneud hynny yn erbyn cefndir Papur Gwyn lle y mae’r Llywodraeth hon wedi amlinellu ein polisïau cenedlaethol ar gyfer awdurdodau lleol yn y dyfodol.

Cytunaf â’r hyn y mae’r Aelod yn ei ddweud—fod pob plaid yn gwneud cyfraniad pwysig iawn i ddemocratiaeth pan fyddant yn rhoi argymhellion gerbron yr etholwyr ac yn caniatáu i’r bobl hynny benderfynu drostynt eu hunain rhwng y gwahanol brosbectysau sydd o’u blaenau, a chredaf y gwnawn yn dda i adael i bobl wneud y penderfyniadau hynny pan fyddant yn mynd i’r blwch pleidleisio yfory.

And finally, Cabinet Secretary, across Wales, local authorities are signed up to private finance initiative schemes with a capital value of £308 million but a total overall cost of over £1.5 billion. A £53 million waste management scheme in Wrexham will cost the taxpayers £450 million, a £28 million lifelong learning centre in Rhondda Cynon Taf will cost over £112 million and the £40 million school project in Conwy will cost my taxpayers over £175 million, a cost that will be reluctantly inherited by the new administration from the previous Plaid and Labour-run council. As we enter a new local government municipal term, what input will you have to ensure that local authorities do not simply get carried away signing up to costly PFI schemes, which then not only place a burden of debt on future administrations, but more so on our tax-paying and hard-working families?

Ac yn olaf, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ledled Cymru, mae awdurdodau lleol wedi ymgymryd â chynlluniau menter cyllid preifat sydd â gwerth cyfalaf o £308 miliwn ond â chyfanswm cost gyffredinol o dros £1.5 biliwn. Bydd cynllun rheoli gwastraff gwerth £53 miliwn yn Wrecsam yn costio £450 miliwn i’r trethdalwyr, bydd canolfan ddysgu gydol oes gwerth £28 miliwn yn Rhondda Cynon Taf yn costio dros £112 miliwn, a bydd y prosiect ysgolion gwerth £40 miliwn yng Nghonwy yn costio dros £175 miliwn i fy nhrethdalwyr, cost y bydd y weinyddiaeth newydd yn ei hetifeddu’n gyndyn oddi wrth y cyngor blaenorol a reolid gan Blaid Cymru a’r Blaid Lafur. Wrth i ni gychwyn tymor bwrdeistrefol newydd i lywodraeth leol, beth fyddwch chi’n ei wneud i sicrhau nad yw awdurdodau lleol yn mynd dros ben llestri wrth ymgymryd â chynlluniau menter cyllid preifat costus, sydd nid yn unig yn gosod baich dyled ar weinyddiaethau’r dyfodol, ond i raddau mwy, ar ein teuluoedd gweithgar sy’n talu trethi?

Dirprwy Lywydd, an uninstructed listener would find it difficult to have discerned from that the fact that it was the Member’s party that introduced PFI schemes and enthusiastically put them in front of local authorities to persuade them to do it. There are Conservative local authorities in Wales that have PFI schemes as well. What this Government has done, particularly under the leadership of my predecessor, Jane Hutt, is to provide revenue support to local authorities to support them in conventional borrowing to help them with their twenty-first century schools programme and to help them with some of their housing responsibilities. We will do more during this Assembly term in the field of the flood risk management and, in that way, we will assist local authorities to borrow responsibly, to use the powers that are available to them, and to carry out very important work on behalf of their local communities.

Dirprwy Lywydd, byddai’n anodd i unrhyw wrandäwr gasglu o hynny heb eglurhad mai plaid yr Aelod a fu’n gyfrifol am gyflwyno cynlluniau menter cyllid preifat a’u cyflwyno’n frwdfrydig i awdurdodau lleol er mwyn eu perswadio i’w defnyddio. Mae gan rai awdurdodau lleol Ceidwadol yng Nghymru gynlluniau menter cyllid preifat hefyd. Mae’r Llywodraeth hon, yn enwedig o dan arweiniad fy rhagflaenydd, Jane Hutt, wedi darparu cymorth refeniw i awdurdodau lleol i’w cefnogi gyda benthyca confensiynol er mwyn eu cynorthwyo gyda’u rhaglen ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain ac er mwyn eu helpu gyda rhai o’u cyfrifoldebau ym maes tai. Byddwn yn gwneud mwy yn ystod tymor y Cynulliad hwn ym maes rheoli perygl llifogydd, ac yn y ffordd honno, byddwn yn cynorthwyo awdurdodau lleol i fenthyca’n gyfrifol, i ddefnyddio’r pwerau sydd ar gael iddynt, ac i wneud gwaith pwysig iawn ar ran eu cymunedau lleol.

Diolch. Ddoe, yn ystod amser cwestiynau’r Prif Weinidog, fe bwysodd Steffan Lewis am ddiweddariad am gomisiwn gwaith teg y Prif Weinidog, ac fe ofynnodd arweinydd Plaid Cymru am arwydd o gefnogaeth i’r egwyddor o ddileu cytundebau dim oriau yn y sector cyhoeddus yng Nghymru. Rwyf i am ddilyn y mater ymhellach efo chi heddiw yma. A ydych chi’n cytuno efo fi, ac efo arweinwyr eich plaid chi yn Lloegr, nad oes lle i gytundebau dim oriau mewn arferion cyflogaeth cyhoeddus cyfoes?

Thank you. Yesterday, during First Minister’s questions, Steffan Lewis urged for an update on the First Minister’s fair work commission and the leader of Plaid Cymru asked for a sign of support to the principle of scrapping zero-hours contracts in the public sector in Wales. Now, I want to follow that issue up further with you this afternoon. Do you agree with me and with the leaders of your party in England that there is no room for zero-hours contracts in the current public employment sector?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, this Government has taken a series of actions within the law as it currently stands to bear down on the exploitation of zero-hours contracts, but we have to do that within the powers that are available to us and within the competence that this National Assembly possesses. When a Labour Government is elected in June of this year, we will be able to do more. I look forward to that very much.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, mae’r llywodraeth hon wedi rhoi cyfres o gamau gweithredu ar waith o fewn y gyfraith fel y mae ar hyn o bryd i fynd i’r afael â chamfanteisio contractau dim oriau, ond mae’n rhaid i ni wneud hynny o fewn y pwerau sydd ar gael i ni, ac o fewn cymhwysedd y Cynulliad Cenedlaethol hwn. Pan fydd Llywodraeth Lafur yn cael ei hethol ym mis Mehefin eleni, byddwn yn gallu gwneud mwy. Edrychaf ymlaen yn fawr iawn at hynny.

Mi rydych chi wedi cyfeirio heddiw, ac mi gyfeiriodd y Prif Weinidog ddoe, at yr ‘issues’ yma sydd yng Nghymru ynglŷn â dileu contractau dim oriau, ac rydych chi wedi dadlau yn y gorffennol y byddai cynnwys gwelliannau i ddileu contractau dim oriau yn y Bil gwasanaethau cymdeithasol wedi gallu tanseilio’r Bil gan ei wneud o’n agored i her yn yr Uchel Lys.

Ond, mi fyddai hi wedi bod yn bosib i chi gyflwyno Bil ar wahân, yn benodol am gytundebau dim oriau o fewn y sector gofal—mae gwasanaethau cyhoeddus wedi’u datganoli—ond, yn hytrach, rydych chi wedi pleidleisio yn erbyn dileu cytundebau dim oriau ar salw achlysur. Pam nad ydych chi wedi chwilio am ffyrdd a fyddai yn eich galluogi chi i ddileu cytundebau dim oriau ym maes gofal, gan roi parch i’r gweithwyr hollbwysig yma?

You’ve referred today, and the First Minister yesterday referred, to these issues that there are in Wales in terms of scrapping zero-hours contracts, and you’ve argued in the past that including amendments to abolish zero-hours contracts in the social services Bill could have undermined the Bill, making it open to challenge in the High Court.

But it would have been possible for you to introduce a separate Bill specifically on zero-hours contracts within the care sector—because public services are devolved—but, instead, you have voted against scrapping zero-hours contracts on a number of occasions. So, why haven’t you sought ways and means that would enable you to scrap zero-hours contracts in the care sector, providing respect to these crucial workers?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, in the previous Assembly, the Government was not prepared to see a whole Bill put at risk by the directly attention-seeking amendments put down by opposition parties on this matter, and it's completely untrue—completely untrue—to say that no further action has been taken. The Regulation and Inspection of Social Care Bill that I took through the National Assembly provides specific powers to Welsh Ministers to respond to the use of zero-hours contracts in the social care field, and I know that my colleague Rebecca Evans has very active intentions of bringing forward proposals very shortly.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, yn y Cynulliad blaenorol, nid oedd y Llywodraeth yn barod i weld Bil cyfan yn cael ei beryglu yn sgil gwelliannau a gyflwynai’r gwrthbleidiau ar y mater hwn yn unswydd er mwyn tynnu sylw, ac mae’n gwbl anghywir—yn gwbl anghywir—i ddweud nad oes unrhyw gamau pellach wedi cael eu cymryd. Mae’r Bil Rheoleiddio ac Arolygu Gofal Cymdeithasol a hebryngais drwy’r Cynulliad Cenedlaethol yn darparu pwerau penodol i Weinidogion Cymru ymateb i’r defnydd o gontractau dim oriau ym maes gofal cymdeithasol, a gwn fod fy nghyd-Aelod Rebecca Evans yn llawn fwriadu cyflwyno argymhellion cyn bo hir.

Mae’n ymddangos i mi fod yna fwlch anferth rhwng yr hyn y mae Llafur yn ei ddweud a’r hyn y mae Llafur yn ei wneud. Mae yna fwlch rhwng llywodraeth Lafur Caerdydd ac arweinwyr Llafur yn Lloegr, a hefyd bwlch rhwng yr hyn y mae Gweinidogion ym Mae Caerdydd yn ei ddweud a beth y mae cynghorau Llafur ar lawr gwlad yn ei wneud. Rwy’n sôn yn benodol yn fan hyn am gynlluniau i annog pobl i siopa ar y stryd fawr a’r arian sydd wedi’i glustnodi i gynghorau sir i gefnogi mentrau parcio—£3 miliwn i gyd—yn sgil cytundeb rhwng Plaid Cymru a chithau. Yn anffodus, mae cyngor Nedd Port Talbot yn dewis defnyddio’r £133,000 a oedd i fod i helpu’r stryd fawr i ‘offset-io’ gorwariant ar barcio, yn erbyn y cyfarwyddyd penodol a roddwyd gan eich Llywodraeth chi. A ydych chi’n cytuno fod hyn yn mynd yn hollol groes i’w bwriad ac yn ddefnydd cwbl aneffeithiol o’r pot penodol hwn o arian?

It appears to me that there is a huge gulf between what Labour says and what Labour does. There is a gap between the Labour Government in Cardiff and Labour’s leaders in London, and also a gap between what Ministers in Cardiff Bay say and what Labour councils on the ground are actually doing. I’m talking specifically here about plans to encourage people to shop on their local high streets and the funding allocated to county councils to support parking initiatives—£3 million in total—in light of the agreement between Plaid Cymru and yourself. Unfortunately, Neath Port Talbot council have chosen to use the £133,000 that was to assist the high street to offset overspend on parking, against the specific guidance provided by your Government. Do you agree that this is entirely contrary to the intention and is an entirely ineffective use of this specific pot of funding?

Dirprwy Lywydd, we will keep a very close watch on the way in which the money that has been provided for this purpose and on this experimental pilot basis—the way that it is used right across Wales. I’m comfortable with the fact that different local authorities will choose to use the money in different ways, but I say very clearly to them that I expect every local authority to use that money in a way that has a direct connection with the purpose for which it was provided. We will pursue that matter with all local authorities in Wales over this 12 months.

Dirprwy Lywydd, byddwn yn cadw llygad barcud ar y ffordd y mae’r arian a ddarparwyd at y diben hwn ac ar sail treialu arbrofol o’r fath—y ffordd y mae’n cael ei ddefnyddio ledled Cymru. Rwy’n fodlon â’r ffaith y bydd gwahanol awdurdodau lleol yn dewis defnyddio’r arian mewn ffyrdd gwahanol, ond rwy’n dweud yn glir iawn wrthynt fy mod yn disgwyl i bob awdurdod lleol ddefnyddio’r arian mewn ffordd sydd â chysylltiad uniongyrchol â’r diben y cafodd ei ddarparu ar ei gyfer. Byddwn yn mynd ar drywydd y mater hwnnw gyda’r holl awdurdodau lleol yng Nghymru dros y 12 mis nesaf.

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer. Minister, I have been encouraged by some of your proposed local government reforms. You appear to want more transparency, and perhaps you also accept the idea that more plurality of opinion is sometimes needed. Local residents don’t really benefit from councils being run like one-party states. Would you welcome it if councils were able to scrap the cabinet system and return to the old committee system, which enabled members of all parties to participate in the running of the council?

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd. Weinidog, mae rhai o’ch diwygiadau arfaethedig i lywodraeth leol yn galonogol iawn. Ymddengys eich bod yn awyddus i gael mwy o dryloywder, ac efallai hefyd eich bod yn derbyn y syniad fod angen mwy o amrywiaeth barn weithiau. Nid yw trigolion lleol yn cael budd go iawn o gynghorau sy’n cael eu rhedeg fel gwladwriaethau un blaid. A fyddech yn croesawu pe bai cynghorau’n cael gwared ar y system gabinet a dychwelyd at yr hen system bwyllgorau, a oedd yn galluogi aelodau o bob plaid i gymryd rhan yn y gwaith o redeg y cyngor?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, our White Paper puts the committee system back on the table as something that local authorities can choose should they wish to do so. It’s part of that menu approach that I outlined earlier. I am very comfortable with the idea that what we would seek to do as a National Assembly is to make choices available to local authorities that they can then draw down. I’m very comfortable that the committee system—a modernised, reformed committee system—should be on the list as one of the ways in which those local authorities who would like to do so could choose to organise the running of their business.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, mae ein Papur Gwyn yn rhoi’r system bwyllgorau yn ôl ar y bwrdd fel rhywbeth y gall awdurdodau lleol ei ddewis os ydynt yn dymuno gwneud hynny. Mae’n rhan o’r dull bwydlen a amlinellais yn gynharach. Rwy’n fodlon iawn â’r syniad mai’r hyn y byddem yn ceisio ei wneud fel Cynulliad Cenedlaethol yw sicrhau bod dewisiadau ar gael i awdurdodau lleol iddynt allu eu defnyddio. Rwy’n fodlon iawn fod y system bwyllgor—system bwyllgor fodern, ddiwygiedig—ar y rhestr fel un o’r ffyrdd y gall yr awdurdodau lleol sy’n awyddus i wneud hynny eu dewis er mwyn trefnu’r modd y byddant yn gwneud eu gwaith.

Thanks for that answer. The choice does sound like a welcome development. However, I wonder if entrenched parties that have been running their council for some time would be minded to introduce voluntarily such a change of system, but we will see. Localism is a principle that is sometimes championed by your Government. UKIP is also a fan of localism. We want to allow local residents to decide on major planning developments in their area. In other words, we want legally binding local referenda. Is this an example of localism that you would favour?

Diolch am eich ateb. Mae’r dewis yn swnio fel datblygiad i’w groesawu. Fodd bynnag, tybed a fyddai pleidiau sydd wedi bod yno ers amser hir ac sydd wedi bod yn rhedeg eu cyngor ers peth amser yn barod i gyflwyno newid system o’r fath yn wirfoddol, ond cawn weld. Mae lleoliaeth yn egwyddor sy’n cael ei hyrwyddo o bryd i’w gilydd gan eich Llywodraeth. Mae UKIP hefyd yn cefnogi lleoliaeth. Rydym yn awyddus i ganiatáu i drigolion lleol wneud penderfyniadau ynglŷn â datblygiadau cynllunio mawr yn eu hardaloedd. Mewn geiriau eraill, rydym yn awyddus i gael refferenda lleol sy’n rhwymo mewn cyfraith. A yw hon yn enghraifft o leoliaeth y byddech yn ei ffafrio?

It’s not. I don’t believe in Government by referendum. I don’t believe that its track record is one that bears examination. I don’t think that it gives rise to effective, holistic decision making. I don’t think it contributes to speed of decision making. It does not form part of the White Paper, and I have no current plans that it should do so.

Nac ydy. Nid wyf yn credu mewn Llywodraeth drwy refferendwm. Nid wyf yn credu bod iddo hanes o werth. Nid wyf yn credu ei fod yn arwain at benderfyniadau effeithiol, cyfannol. Nid wyf yn credu ei fod yn cyfrannu at wneud penderfyniadau’n gyflym. Nid yw’n rhan o’r Papur Gwyn, ac nid oes gennyf gynlluniau i’w gynnwys ar hyn o bryd.

Okay, thanks for your very clear answer there. We are concerned in UKIP at the recycling targets of your Government. We feel that reduced black bag collections could be harmful to residents. Do you agree that fortnightly collections should be the minimum service provided to residents?

Iawn, diolch am eich ateb clir iawn. Rydym ni yn UKIP yn bryderus ynglŷn â thargedau ailgylchu eich Llywodraeth. Teimlwn y gallai llai o gasgliadau bagiau du fod yn niweidiol i drigolion. A ydych yn cytuno y dylai gwasanaeth safonol ar gyfer preswylwyr gynnwys casgliadau pob pythefnos fan lleiaf?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, it is for local authorities themselves to decide the systems that best suit their local needs and circumstances. You can’t advocate the advantages of localism in one question and then ask me to set from here in Cardiff the way in which bins are collected in different parts of Wales; it really is not a consistent way of approaching local government. Nor, by the way, do I think the evidence is that different patterns of bin collection have a deleterious impact on recycling.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, mater i’r awdurdodau lleol eu hunain yw penderfynu ar y systemau sy’n gweddu orau i’w hanghenion a’u hamgylchiadau lleol. Ni allwch siarad o blaid manteision lleoliaeth mewn un cwestiwn a gofyn wedyn i mi bennu o’r fan hon yng Nghaerdydd y ffordd y caiff biniau eu casglu mewn gwahanol rannau o Gymru; nid yw honno’n ffordd gyson o ymdrin â llywodraeth leol. Nid wyf ychwaith, gyda llaw, yn credu bod y dystiolaeth yn dangos bod gwahanol batrymau ar gyfer casglu biniau’n cael effaith andwyol ar ailgylchu.

Thank you very much. We turn to the questions on the order paper. Question 3—Joyce Watson.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Symudwn at y cwestiynau ar y papur trefn. Cwestiwn 3—Joyce Watson.

Buddsoddi mewn Seilwaith

Infrastructure Investment

3. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am gynlluniau Llywodraeth Cymru i fuddsoddi mewn seilwaith yng Nghymru? OAQ(5)0119(FLG)

3. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the Welsh Government’s plans for investing in infrastructure in Wales? OAQ(5)0119(FLG)

I thank the Member for the question. In the budget approved in January, we set out plans for delivering nearly £7 billion-worth of capital investment over the next four years, with particular emphasis on continued investment in housing, transport, schools and hospitals.

Diolch i’r Aelod am ei chwestiwn. Yn y gyllideb a gymeradwywyd ym mis Ionawr, nodwyd cynlluniau gennym ar gyfer darparu bron i £7 biliwn mewn buddsoddiad cyfalaf dros y pedair blynedd nesaf, gyda phwyslais penodol ar barhau i fuddsoddi mewn tai, trafnidiaeth, ysgolion ac ysbytai.

I thank you, Cabinet Secretary, for the answer. The commitment from Welsh Government to £1 billion of innovative investment in infrastructure for three major capital investment projects through the mutual investment model in March was, indeed, very welcome news. And it does indeed demonstrate that, in these financially challenging times, the Labour Welsh Government rises to that challenge of finding innovative ways to invest in public infrastructure. Cabinet Secretary, when and how will businesses be able to tender for the projects being delivered through this particular model?

Diolch am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Roedd yr ymrwymiad gan Lywodraeth Cymru i £1 biliwn o fuddsoddiad arloesol mewn seilwaith ar gyfer tri phrosiect buddsoddi cyfalaf mawr drwy’r model buddsoddi cydfuddiannol ym mis Mawrth yn newyddion calonogol iawn. Ac yn wir, mae’n dangos bod Llywodraeth Lafur Cymru, yn y cyfnod heriol hwn yn ariannol, yn wynebu’r her o ddod o hyd i ffyrdd arloesol o fuddsoddi mewn seilwaith cyhoeddus. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, pryd a sut y bydd busnesau’n gallu tendro am y prosiectau a gyflwynir drwy’r model hwn?

Can I thank Joyce Watson for that important question? She may be aware that we held a very successful market testing day on 23 March. It was attended by my colleagues Vaughan Gething and the Cabinet Secretary for Education. We had over 250 attendees from a whole range of Welsh businesses come on that day to hear more about the opportunities that there will be through the mutual investment model. We’re now able to provide information directly to those who are interested in it. The business cases will be further developed and we’ve planned further events over the summer to make sure that these new opportunities for capital investment are as well-known as possible to businesses in all parts of Wales.

A gaf fi ddiolch i Joyce Watson am ei chwestiwn pwysig? Efallai ei bod yn ymwybodol ein bod wedi cynnal diwrnod profi’r farchnad llwyddiannus iawn ar 23 Mawrth. Fe’i mynychwyd gan fy nghyd-Aelodau Vaughan Gething ac Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg. Mynychodd dros 250 o gynrychiolwyr o ystod eang o fusnesau yng Nghymru ar y diwrnod hwnnw i glywed mwy am y cyfleoedd y bydd y model buddsoddi cydfuddiannol yn eu cynnig. Rydym bellach yn gallu darparu gwybodaeth yn uniongyrchol i’r rhai sydd â diddordeb. Bydd yr achosion busnes yn cael eu datblygu ymhellach, ac rydym wedi cynllunio rhagor o ddigwyddiadau dros yr haf er mwyn sicrhau bod busnesau ym mhob rhan o Gymru mor ymwybodol â phosibl o’r cyfleoedd newydd hyn ar gyfer buddsoddiadau cyfalaf.

Cabinet Secretary, you made reference, in your response to Joyce Watson there, to transport infrastructure improvements, and, indeed, there have been lots of announcements in relation to investment that the Welsh Government wants to make, either on its own or in partnership with others in south Wales—the M4 relief road, new terminals at Cardiff Airport, the south Wales metro system et cetera. And you’ve made an announcement in respect of north-east Wales, but what about the rest of Wales and constituencies like mine? We have an A55 in north Wales that is a constant bottleneck and is causing pressure on the tourism industry and other businesses in north Wales, as well as residents who use that road frequently. There’s no hard shoulder for large lengths of that road, and our transport infrastructure also needs improvement. What benefit will north-west Wales and north-central Wales receive as a result of the Welsh Government’s transport infrastructure improvements?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, yn eich ymateb i Joyce Watson, cyfeiriasoch at welliannau i’r seilwaith trafnidiaeth, ac yn wir, cafwyd sawl cyhoeddiad mewn perthynas â buddsoddiad y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn awyddus i’w wneud, naill ai ar ei phen ei hun neu mewn partneriaeth ag eraill yn ne Cymru—ffordd liniaru’r M4, terfynfeydd newydd ym Maes Awyr Caerdydd, system metro de Cymru ac ati. Ac rydych wedi gwneud cyhoeddiad mewn perthynas â gogledd-ddwyrain Cymru, ond beth am weddill Cymru, ac etholaethau fel fy un i? Ceir tagfeydd cyson ar yr A55 yng ngogledd Cymru ac mae hynny’n achosi pwysau ar y diwydiant twristiaeth a busnesau eraill yng ngogledd Cymru, yn ogystal â thrigolion sy’n defnyddio’r ffordd honno yn aml. Nid oes llain galed ar rannau helaeth o’r ffordd honno, ac mae angen gwella ein seilwaith trafnidiaeth hefyd. Pa fudd a ddaw i ogledd-orllewin Cymru a chanol gogledd Cymru o ganlyniad i welliannau Llywodraeth Cymru i’r seilwaith trafnidiaeth?

Well, Dirprwy Lywydd, I’m very happy to draw the specifics of the Member’s question to the attention of the Minister with direct responsibility for implementing the programme. Our ambition is to make sure that we invest in all parts of Wales, attending to those issues that are most urgent and that deliver the greatest benefits for local population. The Member makes the point on behalf of his constituents in the way that you would expect him to do.

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, rwy’n hapus iawn i dynnu sylw’r Gweinidog sydd â chyfrifoldeb uniongyrchol am roi’r rhaglen ar waith at fanylion cwestiwn yr Aelod. Ein huchelgais yw sicrhau ein bod yn buddsoddi ym mhob rhan o Gymru, gan fynd i’r afael â’r materion hynny sydd angen sylw ar frys ac sy’n darparu’r manteision mwyaf ar gyfer y boblogaeth leol. Mae’r Aelod yn gwneud y pwynt ar ran ei etholwyr fel y byddech yn disgwyl iddo’i wneud.

Cabinet Secretary, the investment plan you have in the Welsh Government is huge, but procurement is an opportunity to be used as a tool to support Welsh businesses, particularly in my area with the steel industry. What’s the Government doing to actually support those industries, through procurement, and what strategies are you taking forward in that?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, mae’r cynllun buddsoddi sydd gennych yn Llywodraeth Cymru yn enfawr, ond dylid defnyddio caffael fel arf i gefnogi busnesau Cymru, yn enwedig yn fy ardal i gyda’r diwydiant dur. Beth y mae’r Llywodraeth yn ei wneud, mewn gwirionedd, i gefnogi’r diwydiannau hynny drwy gaffael, a pha strategaethau rydych yn eu rhoi ar waith yn hynny o beth?

Dirprwy Lywydd, as Adam Price earlier pointed out on opportunities that there may be in the field of VAT post Brexit, then we have to say that ways in which procurement policy can be developed outside the European Union is another very important area that we need to work on here in Wales, and work has already begun on that topic. That has not precluded us from already having done significant work in relation to procurement as far as the steel industry is concerned. A particular group has come together, a report has been produced and it identifies opportunities for using Welsh-made steel in Welsh investment decisions. We do everything we can to make sure that the money that is spent by the public purse in Welsh infrastructure is aligned with opportunities for Welsh businesses, in particular the steel industry, to benefit from that very significant level of investment.

Dirprwy Lywydd, fel y dywedodd Adam Price yn gynharach ynglŷn â’r cyfleoedd a allai ddod mewn perthynas â TAW ar ôl Brexit, mae’n rhaid i ni ddweud bod y ffyrdd y gellir datblygu polisi caffael y tu allan i’r Undeb Ewropeaidd yn faes arall pwysig iawn y mae angen i ni weithio arno yma yng Nghymru, ac mae’r gwaith eisoes wedi dechrau ar hynny. Nid yw hynny wedi ein hatal rhag gwneud cryn dipyn o waith eisoes ar gaffael mewn perthynas â’r diwydiant dur. Mae grŵp penodol wedi dod ynghyd, mae adroddiad wedi cael ei gynhyrchu ac mae’n nodi cyfleoedd ar gyfer defnyddio dur Cymru mewn penderfyniadau buddsoddi yng Nghymru. Rydym yn gwneud popeth yn ein gallu i sicrhau bod yr arian sy’n cael ei wario o bwrs y wlad ar seilwaith Cymru yn cyd-fynd â chyfleoedd i fusnesau Cymru, yn enwedig y diwydiant dur, elwa ar y lefel sylweddol iawn honno o fuddsoddiad.

Cyngor Ynys Môn

Ynys Môn Council

4. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am y gwasanaethau a ddarperir gan Gyngor Ynys Môn? OAQ(5)0116(FLG)[W]

4. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the services provided by Ynys Môn Council? OAQ(5)0116(FLG)[W]

Diolch, wrth gwrs, am y cwestiwn. Mae ymyrraeth uniongyrchol gan Weinidogion yn Ynys Môn wedi darparu platfform sydd wedi arwain at gynnydd o ran darparu gwasanaethau. Er ein bod ni wedi gweld gwelliannau pwysig, mae pryderon difrifol yn parhau, fel y gwelsom yn adroddiad Arolygiaeth Gofal a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol Cymru yn ddiweddar ynghylch gwasanaethau plant ar yr ynys.

Thank you for the question. Direct ministerial intervention in Ynys Môn has provided a platform from which progress has since been made in the provision of services. While important improvements have been seen, real concerns remain, as demonstrated in the recent Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales report into children’s services on the island.

Eisiau holi am un gwasanaeth penodol ydw i, gwasanaeth pwysig i gyngor Môn, fel i awdurdodau lleol ledled Cymru, sef gofalu am ffyrdd. Mae yna dueddiad, onid oes, o weld gwaith ffyrdd yn cynyddu’n arw ym misoedd cyntaf y flwyddyn, wrth i ddiwedd y flwyddyn ariannol nesáu. Ond, nid hyn yw’r ffordd orau i sicrhau safon gwaith a gwerth am arian, achos nid misoedd y gaeaf ydy’r amser gorau i ailwynebu ffyrdd. Mae’r ffordd newydd yn para yn llai o’i wneud o mewn tywydd oer, mae’r dyddiau gwaith yn fyrrach, a hefyd mae gwneud llawer o waith cynnal a chadw ar un adeg yn golygu nad ydy’r capasiti, o bosib, gan gwmnïau lleol i ymwneud â’r gwaith. Yr ateb, efallai, fyddai sicrhau bod gwaith yn cael ei rannu yn decach ar draws y flwyddyn, a chaniatáu i wneud mwy o waith hefyd yn ystod misoedd yr haf. Mae’r un peth yn wir am adran priffyrdd y Llywodraeth. Rŵan, rydw i’n sylweddoli nad y Gweinidog yma sy’n gyfrifol am drafnidiaeth a ffyrdd, ond fel Gweinidog cyllid a Gweinidog llywodraeth leol, pa waith sydd wedi cael ei wneud neu pa waith ydych chi’n ystyried ei wneud i chwilio am fodelau strwythurau cyllidol newydd i helpu dyrannu arian cynnal a chadw ffyrdd yn fwy hafal ar draws y flwyddyn?

I wanted to ask about a specific service, a service that’s important to Ynys Môn council, and other councils across Wales, and that is roads. There’s a tendency to see roadworks increasing substantially during the first months of the year, as the end of the financial year approaches. But, this isn’t the best way of ensuring the quality of the work or value for money, because the winter months aren’t necessarily the best time to resurface roads. The surface lasts less time if done in cold weather, the working day is shorter and maintenance work all done at one time means that the capacity isn’t available, perhaps, among local companies to carry out that work. The solution, perhaps, is to ensure that the work is spread across the year, and to allow more work to be done during the summer months. The same is true about the Government’s highways department. Now, I understand that the Minister here isn’t responsible for transport and roads, but as Minister for finance and local government, what work has been undertaken or what work are you considering to do to seek models and new funding structures to help to allocate the road maintenance budget more equitably across the year?

Wel, Dirprwy Lywydd, rydw i’n derbyn y pwynt mae’r Aelod yn ei wneud—dyna un o’r rhesymau pam roeddwn i’n awyddus i gyhoeddi y cyfalaf am y pedair blynedd sydd i ddod, i helpu awdurdodau lleol a gwasanaethau cyhoeddus eraill i gynllunio’n well i ddefnyddio’r cyfalaf sydd ar gael iddyn nhw. Ar ôl yfory, pan fydd y cynghorau sir newydd yna, rydw i’n bwriadu mynd o gwmpas yn ystod yr haf i gwrdd gyda phob awdurdod lleol, ac rwy’n hollol hapus i godi’r pwynt mae Rhun ap Iorwerth wedi codi prynhawn yma a’i drafod e gyda phobl leol i weld os gallant wneud pethau yn well yn y dyfodol.

Well, Deputy Presiding Officer, I accept the point that the Member makes and that’s one of the reasons why we were eager to announce the capital funding available for the ensuing four years, in order to assist local authorities and other public services to plan better in order to use the capital funding available to them. After tomorrow, when the new county councils are in place, I intend over the summer to meet with every local authority and I’m completely happy to raise the point that Rhun ap Iorwerth has raised this afternoon and to discuss it with the local people to see whether things can be done better in the future.

Four days ago I joined the Assembly outreach service on a visit to the youth pod in Holyhead, which I commend to you. I promised young people there who are trained as peer educators for Project Lydia—a young people’s sex and relationship education project—that I would raise their concerns here. They gave me a copy of the project co-ordinator’s end-of-year report, to April 2017, showing that they had given 584 face-to-face support to young people, delivering evidenced better physical and social health, but given the conclusion of the report, it’s obvious young people need comprehensive sex and relationship education and ongoing support as much, if not more, than ever. However, it’s disappointing that neither Ynys Môn council nor Betsi Cadwaladr health board appear to have made any effort to raise funds to maintain this valued project, or indeed given staff the opportunity to do so. This is a multi-agency issue, which I therefore trust falls within your broader portfolio, and I wonder what action you might be able to take to support these excellent young people.

Bedwar diwrnod yn ôl, ymunais â gwasanaeth allgymorth y Cynulliad ar ymweliad â’r pod ieuenctid yng Nghaergybi, ac fe’i cymeradwyaf i chi. Addewais i bobl ifanc yno sydd wedi hyfforddi fel addysgwyr cymheiriaid ar gyfer Prosiect Lydia—prosiect addysg rhyw a pherthnasoedd ar gyfer pobl ifanc—y byddwn yn nodi eu pryderon yma. Cefais gopi ganddynt o adroddiad diwedd blwyddyn cydgysylltydd y prosiect, hyd at fis Ebrill 2017, a ddangosai eu bod wedi rhoi cymorth wyneb yn wyneb i bobl ifanc 584 o weithiau, gyda thystiolaeth eu bod yn sicrhau iechyd corfforol a chymdeithasol gwell, ond o ystyried casgliad yr adroddiad, mae’n amlwg fod angen addysg rhyw a pherthnasoedd gynhwysfawr a chefnogaeth barhaus ar bobl ifanc gymaint ag erioed, os nad yn fwy nag erioed. Fodd bynnag, mae’n siomedig ei bod yn ymddangos nad oedd cyngor Ynys Môn na bwrdd iechyd Betsi Cadwaladr wedi gwneud unrhyw ymdrech i godi arian ar gyfer cynnal y prosiect gwerthfawr hwn, neu hyd yn oed wedi rhoi cyfle i’r staff wneud hynny. Mae hwn yn fater amlasiantaethol, a chredaf felly ei fod yn rhan o’ch portffolio ehangach, a thybed pa gamau y gallech eu cymryd i gefnogi’r bobl ifanc ardderchog hyn.

Can I thank the Member for raising the matter? I know that, in general, my colleague Kirsty Williams has a group looking at the way in which relationship education for people at that point in their lives can be improved in Wales. If the Member was willing to share a copy of the end-of-year report with me, I’d be very happy to look at it and see whether there are any steps that we might take to support that group.

A gaf fi ddiolch i’r Aelod am dynnu sylw at y mater hwn? Yn gyffredinol, gwn fod gan fy nghyd-Aelod Kirsty Williams grŵp sy’n edrych ar sut y gellir gwella addysg perthnasoedd i bobl ar yr adeg honno yn eu bywydau yng Nghymru. Pe bai’r Aelod yn barod i ddangos copi o’r adroddiad diwedd blwyddyn i mi, byddwn yn fwy na pharod i edrych arno a gweld a oes unrhyw gamau y gallem eu cymryd i gefnogi’r grŵp hwnnw.

Bargen Ddinesig Prifddinas-ranbarth Caerdydd

Cardiff Capital Region City Deal

5. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet amlinellu pa gyfraniad y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i Fargen Ddinesig Prifddinas-Ranbarth Caerdydd? OAQ(5)0120(FLG)

5. Will the Cabinet Secretary outline what contribution the Welsh Government will make to the Cardiff Capital Region City Deal? OAQ(5)0120(FLG)

Thank you for the question. Financially, the Welsh Government will provide a contribution of £503 million to the £1.2 billion Cardiff capital city deal. More generally, we remain committed to working with all 10 local authorities in their collaborative effort to deliver the benefits of the deal across the whole region.

Diolch am eich cwestiwn. Yn ariannol, bydd Llywodraeth Cymru’n darparu cyfraniad o £503 miliwn i fargen ddinesig gwerth £1.2 biliwn prifddinas Caerdydd. Yn fwy cyffredinol, rydym yn parhau i fod yn ymrwymedig i weithio gyda’r 10 awdurdod lleol yn eu hymdrech gydweithredol i ddarparu manteision y fargen ar draws y rhanbarth cyfan.

Looking at the transport interchange that’s been identified for the Central Square, which is a crucial part of the sustainable transport strategy for the Cardiff capital region, I wondered if you can put to bed some of the nonsense that the Lib Dems are putting about around demolishing the bus station with gay abandon without any plan to rebuild it, and telling us that there is no money to put in place the new bus/light rail interchange, which of course is absolutely crucial to achieving modal shift, to tackle air pollution and enable people arriving by train to complete their journey, whether it’s by bike, by bus or by light rail. So, I wondered if you can put to bed the scurrilous rumours that have been peddled, that there’s no money for rebuilding the bus station, and tell us what contribution the Welsh Government will make to ensure this crucial piece of sustainable transport jigsaw can be completed by the incoming Labour council.

Gan edrych ar y gyfnewidfa drafnidaeth a nodwyd ar gyfer y Sgwâr Canolog, sy’n rhan hanfodol o’r strategaeth drafnidiaeth gynaliadwy ar gyfer prifddinas-ranbarth Caerdydd, tybed a allwch roi taw ar beth o’r nonsens y mae’r Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol wedi bod yn ei ledaenu’n hapus braf ynglŷn â dymchwel yr orsaf fysiau heb unrhyw gynlluniau i’w hailadeiladu, a dweud wrthym nad oes arian i godi cyfnewidfa newydd ar gyfer bysiau/rheilffyrdd ysgafn, sydd wrth gwrs yn gwbl hanfodol i sicrhau newid moddol, mynd i’r afael â llygredd aer a galluogi pobl sy’n cyrraedd ar drenau i gwblhau eu teithiau, boed hynny ar feiciau, ar fysiau neu ar reilffyrdd ysgafn. Felly, tybed a allwch roi taw ar y sibrydion enllibus sydd wedi cael eu lledaenu, nad oes unrhyw arian ar gael i ailadeiladu’r orsaf fysiau, a dweud wrthym pa gyfraniad y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i sicrhau y gall y cyngor Llafur newydd gwblhau’r darn hanfodol hwn o’r jig-so mewn perthynas â thrafnidiaeth gynaliadwy.

I thank Jenny Rathbone for that supplementary question. It’s always seemed to me, Dirprwy Lywydd, that Cardiff is very fortunate as a city in having a bus interchange and its main railway station so very closely co-located and to allow exactly the sort of transport nexus to be created to which she referred. The Cardiff capital city deal has, as an integral part of it, a regional transport authority to make sure that the way in which transport runs across the whole of the Cardiff capital region can be co-ordinated and properly put together. I have every confidence that the new bus station in Cardiff is properly planned, properly financed and will provide an excellent service, both to the citizens of Cardiff and to those people from the rest of Wales who come to our capital city.

Diolch i Jenny Rathbone am ei chwestiwn atodol. Mae bob amser wedi ymddangos i mi, Dirprwy Lywydd, fod Caerdydd, fel dinas, yn ffodus iawn fod y gyfnewidfa fysiau a’i phrif orsaf drenau’n ddigon agos at ei gilydd i allu creu’r math o gysylltiad trafnidiaeth y cyfeiriodd ato. Mae awdurdod trafnidiaeth rhanbarthol yn rhan annatod o fargen ddinesig prifddinas Caerdydd er mwyn sicrhau y gellir cydgysylltu a chyflunio’n briodol y ffordd y mae trafnidiaeth yn rhedeg ar draws prifddinas-ranbarth Caerdydd yn ei gyfanrwydd. Rwy’n ffyddiog fod yr orsaf fysiau newydd yng Nghaerdydd wedi’i chynllunio’n briodol, wedi’i hariannu’n briodol ac y bydd yn darparu gwasanaeth ardderchog, i ddinasyddion Caerdydd ac i’r bobl o weddill Cymru sy’n dod i’n prifddinas.

Obviously, with the local government elections tomorrow, Cabinet Secretary, I very much hope that people will vote Conservative. You will say you very much hope people will vote Labour. But what we do know is what is on the table is a city deal that does need, obviously, all partners working to make sure it is delivered, and, in particular, around the transport solutions that, hopefully, will free up this part of Wales, across the whole of the south-east of Wales. How will the Welsh Government engage and help construct a partnership after the local government elections, irrespective of whatever the make-up is of local authorities, so that there can be real progress on the transport solutions that do sit within the city deal that has been delivered by a partnership of the UK Government, Welsh Government, local authorities and businesses?

Yn amlwg, gyda’r etholiadau llywodraeth leol yfory, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwy’n mawr obeithio y bydd pobl yn pleidleisio dros y Ceidwadwyr. Fe fyddwch chi’n dweud eich bod yn mawr obeithio y bydd pobl yn pleidleisio dros y Blaid Lafur. Ond gwyddom mai’r hyn sydd dan sylw yw bargen ddinesig sydd angen, yn amlwg, i’r holl bartneriaid weithio er mwyn sicrhau ei bod yn cael ei chyflawni, ac yn benodol, mewn perthynas â’r atebion trafnidiaeth a fydd, gobeithio, yn rhyddhau’r rhan hon o Gymru, ar draws de-ddwyrain Cymru i gyd. Sut y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn ymgysylltu ac yn helpu i adeiladu partneriaeth ar ôl yr etholiadau llywodraeth leol, waeth beth fo cyfansoddiad awdurdodau lleol, er mwyn sicrhau cynnydd gwirioneddol ar yr atebion trafnidiaeth sy’n rhan o’r fargen ddinesig a gyflwynwyd drwy bartneriaeth rhwng Llywodraeth y DU, Llywodraeth Cymru, awdurdodau lleol a busnesau?

Can I agree with the Member that it’s been a real strength of the Cardiff capital city deal that councils of different political persuasions have been able to come together, have been able to agree on a form of decision making that means that they are able to speak with a single voice on matters that are of a more than local significance and matter to people right across the region? That is especially true in relation to transport. The south Wales metro is one of those genuinely transformative projects. It relies on local authorities taking action, it relies on the Welsh Government playing its part, it has £105 million-worth of central Government money dedicated to it, and in order to make sure that we make the very best use of that opportunity, we have to be able to demonstrate an ability to work across local authority boundaries and across levels of Government as well. The Welsh Government will do everything we can, after tomorrow, when we know the new landscape of local government across Wales, to work with those partners to make sure that, together, we can make something very significant happen for the population of this part of Wales.

A gaf fi gytuno â’r Aelod mai un o brif gryfderau bargen ddinesig prifddinas Caerdydd yw bod cynghorau o wahanol dueddiadau gwleidyddol wedi gallu dod at ei gilydd, wedi gallu cytuno ar ffurf o wneud penderfyniadau sy’n golygu y gallant siarad ag un llais ar faterion y mae eu harwyddocâd yn ymestyn y tu hwnt i’r lleol, ac sydd o bwys i bobl ledled y rhanbarth? Mae hynny’n arbennig o wir mewn perthynas â thrafnidiaeth. Mae metro de Cymru yn un o’r prosiectau gwirioneddol drawsnewidiol hynny. Mae’n dibynnu ar awdurdodau lleol yn gweithredu, mae’n dibynnu ar Lywodraeth Cymru yn chwarae ei rhan, mae gwerth £105 miliwn o arian Llywodraeth ganolog wedi’i glustnodi ar ei gyfer, ac er mwyn gwneud yn siŵr ein bod yn gwneud y defnydd gorau posibl o’r cyfle hwnnw, rhaid i ni allu dangos gallu i weithio ar draws ffiniau awdurdodau lleol ac ar draws lefelau o Lywodraeth hefyd. Bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn gwneud popeth yn ein gallu, ar ôl yfory, pan fyddwn yn gwybod beth fydd tirwedd newydd llywodraeth leol ledled Cymru, i weithio gyda’r partneriaid hynny i sicrhau, gyda’n gilydd, y gallwn wneud i rywbeth arwyddocaol iawn ddigwydd ar gyfer y boblogaeth yn y rhan hon o Gymru.

Darlledu Cyfarfodydd Cynghorau Ar-lein

Online Broadcast of Council Meetings

6. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am ddarlledu cyfarfodydd cynghorau ar-lein yng Nghymru? OAQ(5)0123(FLG)

6. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the online broadcast of council meetings in Wales? OAQ(5)0123(FLG)

I thank Gareth Bennett for the question. The Welsh Government has provided financial support to enable local authorities to broadcast their meetings. Currently, 18 local authorities broadcast their full council meetings, and some local authorities go beyond that and broadcast other meetings as well. The reforming local government White Paper proposes making broadcasting of council meetings a statutory requirement.

Diolch i Gareth Bennett am ei gwestiwn. Mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi darparu cymorth ariannol i alluogi awdurdodau lleol i ddarlledu eu cyfarfodydd. Ar hyn o bryd, mae 18 o awdurdodau lleol yn darlledu cyfarfodydd cyngor llawn, ac mae rhai awdurdodau lleol yn mynd y tu hwnt i hynny ac yn darlledu cyfarfodydd eraill hefyd. Mae’r Papur Gwyn ar ddiwygio llywodraeth leol yn argymell gwneud darlledu cyfarfodydd cyngor yn ofyniad statudol.

Yes, thanks for that. I think, although the Government here did provide money, it hasn’t been an across-the-board, consistent system, so it would be welcome if we could at least have the full council meetings broadcast by each council. Hopefully, you will stick to this, and I’m sure you will. It’s good that some of the councils are also broadcasting the cabinet meetings, which is welcome. So, can you just guarantee that you will push through with this once the local elections are over?

Ie, diolch am hynny. Er bod y Llywodraeth wedi yma wedi darparu arian, ni chredaf ei bod yn system a roddwyd ar waith yn gyffredinol ac yn gyson, felly byddai’n dda pe gallai bob cyngor ddarlledu cyfarfodydd cyngor llawn fan lleiaf. Gobeithio y byddwch yn cadw at hyn, ac rwy’n siŵr y gwnewch. Mae’n dda fod rhai o’r cynghorau hefyd yn darlledu cyfarfodydd cabinet, ac mae hynny i’w groesawu. Felly, a wnewch chi roi sicrwydd y byddwch yn mynd ar drywydd hyn wedi’r etholiadau lleol?

Well, I entirely agree with what the Member has said. I think local populations have a right to see what goes on in their name in their council chambers. That’s why the White Paper proposes that broadcasting council meetings should be a statutory requirement, rather than simply a request of local authorities, and the vast majority of local authorities in Wales are already well on that road. I hope that our White Paper will give a further impetus to doing that right across Wales.

Wel, cytunaf yn llwyr â’r hyn a ddywedodd yr Aelod. Credaf fod hawl gan boblogaethau lleol i weld yr hyn sy’n digwydd yn eu henw yn siambrau eu cynghorau. Dyna pam fod y Papur Gwyn yn argymell y dylai darlledu cyfarfodydd cyngor fod yn ofyniad statudol, yn hytrach na chais i’r awdurdodau lleol yn unig, ac mae’r mwyafrif helaeth o awdurdodau lleol yng Nghymru’n dilyn y llwybr hwnnw eisoes. Gobeithiaf y bydd ein Papur Gwyn yn rhoi ysgogiad pellach i wneud hynny ledled Cymru.

Gwasanaethau Ieuenctid Lleol

Local Youth Services

7. Pa drafodaethau y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi'u cael ag awdurdodau lleol i sicrhau defnydd arloesol o gyllid i ddiogelu gwasanaethau ieuenctid lleol? OAQ(5)0124(FLG)

7. What discussions has the Cabinet Secretary had with local authorities to ensure the innovative use of funding to secure local youth services? OAQ(5)0124(FLG)

I thank David Melding for that. I have regular meetings with the local authority leaders across Wales, at which I discuss a wide range of financial matters. The Minister for Lifelong Learning and Welsh Language recently made a statement here in the Assembly on the future of youth work delivery in Wales.

Diolch i David Melding. Rwy’n cyfarfod yn rheolaidd ag arweinwyr awdurdodau lleol ledled Cymru, ac yn trafod nifer o faterion ariannol. Yn ddiweddar, gwnaeth Gweinidog y Gymraeg a Dysgu Gydol Oes ddatganiad yma yn y Cynulliad ar ddyfodol darpariaeth gwaith ieuenctid yng Nghymru.

Do you agree with me that the key point here is to be innovative? Obviously, under circumstances when budgets are under stress, we have to look at other sources of funding or partnerships, and given the level of salaries for chief executives and senior executives in local governments—very much larger than the Welsh Government Ministers and the First Minister are paid—they are in a position to give that sort of leadership and innovation, and that’s the high level we should be expecting.

A ydych yn cytuno â mi mai’r pwynt allweddol yma yw bod yn arloesol? Yn amlwg, mewn sefyllfaoedd pan fo cyllidebau dan bwysau, mae’n rhaid inni edrych ar ffynonellau cyllid neu bartneriaethau eraill, ac o ystyried lefelau cyflogau prif weithredwyr ac uwch swyddogion gweithredol mewn llywodraeth leol—sy’n llawer uwch na chyflogau Gweinidogion Llywodraeth Cymru a Phrif Weinidog Cymru—maent mewn sefyllfa i roi’r math hwnnw o arweiniad ac arloesedd, a dyna’r lefel uchel y dylem fod yn ei disgwyl.

Well, I agree with David Melding that in tough times innovative ways of providing very important local services have to be sought by local authorities themselves. Dirprwy Lywydd, if you don’t mind, I’ll just take the opportunity for a moment to give a small amount of publicity to our new innovate-to-save fund: £5 million-worth of funding, which comes as a result of reports produced in this Assembly, which will allow youth services and others to make applications for new and innovative ways of providing services. The closing date for the new fund is 23 May, and we hope very much to receive some applications in the area of children and youth services in Wales.

Wel, rwy’n cytuno â David Melding fod yn rhaid i’r awdurdodau lleol eu hunain ddod o hyd i ffyrdd arloesol o ddarparu gwasanaethau lleol pwysig iawn mewn cyfnodau anodd. Dirprwy Lywydd, os ydych yn fodlon, hoffwn fanteisio am eiliad ar y cyfle i roi ychydig bach o gyhoeddusrwydd i’n cronfa arloesi i arbed newydd: gwerth £5 miliwn o arian, a ddaw yn sgil adroddiadau a gynhyrchwyd gan y Cynulliad hwn, a fydd yn caniatáu i wasanaethau ieuenctid ac eraill wneud ceisiadau ar gyfer ffyrdd newydd ac arloesol o ddarparu gwasanaethau. Y dyddiad cau ar gyfer y gronfa newydd yw 23 Mai ac rydym yn mawr obeithio y daw ceisiadau i law ym maes gwasanaethau plant ac ieuenctid yng Nghymru.

Thank you very much. And finally, question 8—Sian Gwenllian.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Ac yn olaf, cwestiwn 8—Sian Gwenllian.

Prosiectau Ynni Cymunedol

Community Energy Projects

8. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am ardrethi busnes mewn perthynas â phrosiectau ynni cymunedol? OAQ(5)0117(FLG)[W]

8. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on business rates relating to community energy projects? OAQ(5)0117(FLG)[W]

Diolch yn fawr am y cwestiwn. Mae sawl cynllun ar gael i helpu busnesau bach gydag ardrethi annomestig. Mae dros £210 miliwn o gymorth yn cael ei ddarparu yn 2017-18. Mae’r cynlluniau hyn ar gael i bob busnes sy’n bodloni’r meini prawf, gan gynnwys projectau ynni cymunedol.

Thank you very much for the question. A range of schemes exist to help small businesses with their non-domestic rates. More than £210 million of relief is being provided in 2017-18. These schemes are open to all eligible businesses that meet the criteria, including community energy projects.

Mi fyddwch chi’n ymwybodol bod y sector ynni dŵr cymunedol wedi’i effeithio’n wael iawn wrth i ardrethi busnes cael eu hail-werthuso. Mae dros 92 y cant o gynlluniau hydro yng Nghymru yn wynebu cynnydd anferthol, hyd at 900 y cant. Roedd eich maniffesto chi ar gyfer 2016 yn nodi cefnogaeth eich plaid i gynlluniau ynni cymunedol. A fedrwch chi ymrwymo i gynnig pecyn gostyngiad trethi hael i gefnogi prosiectau ynni cymunedol yng Nghymru, fel sy’n digwydd yn yr Alban? Mi fyddai hyn yn help mawr, ac yn gyfle i’ch Llywodraeth gefnogi’r sector mewn gweithred yn ogystal â gair.

You’ll be aware that the community hydro sector has been very badly affected as business rates are revaluated. Over 92 per cent of hydro schemes in Wales face a huge increase, up to 900 per cent. Your manifesto for 2016 noted your party’s support to community energy schemes. Can you commit to offer a generous rate relief scheme to support community energy projects in Wales as happens in Scotland? This would be of great assistance and an opportunity for your Government to support the sector in actions as well as in words.

Wel, diolch yn fawr am y cwestiwn ychwanegol yna, ac, wrth gwrs, rydw i’n ymwybodol o’r pethau mae pobl yn y sector yn eu dweud. Mae fy nghydweithwraig i Lesley Griffiths wedi cyfarfod â’r grŵp gorchwyl a gorffen ar ynni dŵr i drafod yr adroddiad ar fesurau i gefnogi’r diwydiant ynni dŵr yng Nghymru, ac rydw i’n gwybod ei bod hi’n mynd i gynnal cyfarfod pellach gyda’r grŵp. Yn y cyfamser, mae ei swyddogion hi, a fy swyddogion i hefyd, yn parhau i weithio gyda chynrychiolwyr diwydiant projectau ynni cymunedol i asesu effaith yr ymarfer ailbrisio 2017 gan Asiantaeth y Swyddfa Brisio. Wrth gwrs, rydw i wedi dweud yn barod, Dirprwy Lywydd: rydym ni’n mynd i baratoi cynllun parhaol newydd ar ryddhad ardrethi busnesau bach o 2018 ymlaen, ac rydw i’n fodlon, fel rhan o’r cynllun parhaol newydd, ystyried yr achos ar gyfer cymorth benodol i rai busnesau, gan gynnwys projectau ynni cymunedol ac ynni dŵr. A hefyd, bydd hyn yn cynnwys asesiad o’r sefyllfa yn yr Alban.

Well, thank you very much for that supplementary question, and of course, I am aware of the things that people in the sector are saying. My colleague Lesley Griffiths has met with the task and finish group on hydro energy to discuss the report on measures to support the hydro energy industry in Wales, and I know that she will be holding a further meeting with that group. In the interim, both her officers and my officers will continue to collaborate with representatives of the community hydro power schemes to assess the effects of the 2017 revaluation by the Valuation Office Agency. Of course, I’ve already said, Deputy Presiding Officer, that we are going to prepare a new scheme for rate relief for small business from the year 2018 onwards. I am happy, as part of this continued scheme, to consider the case for specific assistance and support for some projects, including the community energy projects and community hydro projects. This will also include an assessment of the situation in Scotland.

2. 2. Cwestiynau i Gomisiwn y Cynulliad
2. 2. Questions to the Assembly Commission

Mae [R] yn dynodi bod yr Aelod wedi datgan buddiant. Mae [W] yn dynodi bod y cwestiwn wedi'i gyflwyno yn Gymraeg.

[R] signifies the Member has declared an interest. [W] signifies that the question was tabled in Welsh.

Item 2 on the agenda are questions to the Assembly Commission. We have three this afternoon. The first two are to be answered by the Llywydd as chair of the Commission, and the Commissioner for communications and engagement, and the third one will be answered by Commissioner Joyce Watson, who’s the Commissioner for equalities and the Commission as the employer of Assembly staff. So, the first question is Dawn Bowden.

Cwestiynau i Gomisiwn y Cynulliad yw eitem 2 ar yr agenda. Mae gennym dri chwestiwn y prynhawn yma. Bydd y Llywydd, fel cadeirydd y Comisiwn a’r Comisiynydd cyfathrebu ac ymgysylltu, yn ateb y ddau gyntaf, a bydd y trydydd yn cael ei ateb gan y Comisiynydd Joyce Watson, sef y Comisiynydd cydraddoldeb a’r Comisiwn fel cyflogwr staff y Cynulliad. Felly, daw’r cwestiwn cyntaf gan Dawn Bowden.

Senedd.tv a YouTube

Senedd.tv and YouTube

1. A wnaiff Comisiwn y Cynulliad roi dyddiad penodol ar gyfer symud o Senedd.tv i YouTube? OAQ(5)0005(AC)

1. Will the Assembly Commission provide a fixed date for the switch over from Senedd.tv to YouTube? OAQ(5)0005(AC)

We are working to show live proceedings of the Assembly on as many platforms as possible, including Senedd.tv, Facebook Live and YouTube. We launched live Plenary meetings on YouTube yesterday. We are on YouTube now. [Laughter.]

Rydym yn gweithio ar ddangos trafodion y Cynulliad yn fyw ar gynifer o blatfformau â phosibl, gan gynnwys Senedd.tv, Facebook Live a YouTube. Lansiwyd y Cyfarfodydd Llawn yn fyw ar YouTube ddoe. Rydym ar YouTube yn awr. [Chwerthin.]

Thank you very much, Llywydd. At the time of tabling my question, this hadn’t been done, so I’m hoping that, in some small way, my question being tabled may well have prompted the decision or brought about the change. But, however it came about, I am delighted this change has now been made, and I very much welcome the development. There is no doubt that Senedd.tv has played an important part in making the Assembly accessible to members of the public. In an age when social media plays such a large part in how Assembly Members communicate with their constituents, making the Assembly’s proceedings available on more accessible media, which is also more readily compatible with social media platforms, has to be a positive move in raising awareness of the work of the Assembly. In applauding the switchover, Llywydd, can I ask the Commission that early arrangements be put in place to provide appropriate training to enable Assembly Members and their staff to maximise the potential to publicise proceedings through social media, which in itself will help Members to publicise their work in the Assembly to their constituents?

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Llywydd. Pan gyflwynwyd fy nghwestiwn, nid oedd hynny wedi digwydd, felly rwy’n gobeithio bod cyflwyno fy nghwestiwn, mewn rhyw ffordd fach, wedi ysgogi’r penderfyniad neu achosi’r newid o bosibl. Ond ni waeth sut y digwyddodd, rwyf wrth fy modd fod y newid wedi’i wneud bellach, a chroesawaf y datblygiad yn fawr. Nid oes amheuaeth fod Senedd.tv wedi chwarae rhan bwysig yn sicrhau bod y Cynulliad yn hygyrch i aelodau’r cyhoedd. Mewn oes pan fo’r cyfryngau cymdeithasol yn chwarae rhan mor fawr yn y ffordd y mae Aelodau’r Cynulliad yn cyfathrebu â’u hetholwyr, rhaid bod sicrhau bod trafodion y Cynulliad ar gael ar gyfryngau mwy hygyrch, sydd hefyd yn fwy cydweddol â phlatfformau cyfryngau cymdeithasol, yn gam cadarnhaol o ran codi ymwybyddiaeth o waith y Cynulliad. Wrth gymeradwyo’r newid, Llywydd, a gaf fi ofyn i’r Comisiwn roi trefniadau cynnar ar waith i ddarparu hyfforddiant priodol i alluogi Aelodau’r Cynulliad a’u staff i fanteisio i’r eithaf ar y potensial i roi cyhoeddusrwydd i’r trafodion drwy gyfryngau cymdeithasol, a fydd ynddo’i hun yn gymorth i Aelodau roi gwybod i’w hetholwyr am eu gwaith yn y Cynulliad?

Thank you for your supplementary and for the excellent timing of your question to the Commission. For clarity, Senedd.tv continues as one of the platforms that we have available to us, but YouTube is now being started as of this week, as are Facebook Live opportunities as well. Various committees, especially, have taken up the opportunity to use Facebook Live, and we will be developing that further.

The Commission has set up, as you know, the digital taskforce to provide us with expert recommendations on how we take forward the need to address the lack of coverage by traditional media of what we do in this place, and how we can use new media and new technology to take the work that we do here on behalf of the people of Wales directly to the people of Wales—to their homes and to their phones at the same time. You raise the very important point that some of us—some of you—are very able to use social media very well, and your staff are; but, others haven’t quite kept up to speed with everything that is going on. It’s an issue that I will take back to the Commission as to how we ensure that Members in this place and support staff are trained to enable us to avail ourselves of all the opportunities available to us now from social and new media.

Diolch am eich cwestiwn atodol ac am amseru ardderchog eich cwestiwn i’r Comisiwn. Er eglurder, bydd Senedd.tv yn parhau i fod yn un o’r platfformau sydd ar gael i ni, ond mae YouTube bellach yn dechrau yr wythnos hon, yn ogystal â chyfleoedd Facebook Live hefyd. Mae nifer o bwyllgorau, yn enwedig, wedi manteisio ar y cyfle i ddefnyddio Facebook Live, a byddwn yn datblygu hynny ymhellach.

Fel y gwyddoch, mae’r Comisiwn wedi sefydlu’r tasglu digidol i roi argymhellion arbenigol i ni ynglŷn â sut i fynd i’r afael â’r diffyg sylw gan y cyfryngau traddodiadol i’r hyn a wnawn yn y lle hwn, a sut y gallwn ddefnyddio cyfryngau newydd a thechnoleg newydd i gyflwyno’r gwaith a wnawn yma ar ran pobl Cymru at bobl Cymru’n uniongyrchol—i’w cartrefi ac i’w ffonau ar yr un pryd. Rydych yn nodi’r pwynt pwysig iawn fod rhai ohonom—rhai ohonoch—yn gallu defnyddio cyfryngau cymdeithasol yn dda iawn, yn ogystal â’ch staff; ond nid yw eraill yn gallu dilyn popeth sy’n digwydd. Byddaf yn mynd â’r mater yn ôl at y Comisiwn i ystyried sut i sicrhau bod Aelodau’r lle hwn a’u staff cymorth yn cael eu hyfforddi i’n galluogi i fanteisio ar yr holl gyfleoedd sydd ar gael i ni bellach drwy’r cyfryngau cymdeithasol a chyfryngau newydd.

Y Cyhoedd a’r Cynulliad

The Public and the Assembly

2. A wnaiff y Comisiwn ddatganiad am waith sy’n cael ei wneud i hyrwyddo mynediad a dealltwriaeth y cyhoedd o waith y Cynulliad? OAQ(5)0007(AC)[W]

2. Will the Commission make a statement on work undertaken to promote access and public understanding regarding the work of the Assembly? OAQ(5)0007(AC)[W]

Mae'r Comisiwn yn ymrwymedig i ymgysylltu â phawb yng Nghymru ac mae hyrwyddo’r Cynulliad yn un o’n prif flaenoriaethau. Cafodd strategaeth ymgysylltu â’r cyhoedd newydd ei chymeradwyo ym mis Ionawr, sy’n cynnwys dwy fenter newydd allweddol, sef sefydlu senedd ieuenctid i Gymru a chyflawni argymhellion y tasglu gwybodaeth a newyddion digidol y disgwylir iddo gyflwyno adroddiad yn y tymor yma.

The Commission is committed to engaging with all the people of Wales, and championing the Assembly is one of our key priorities. We approved a new public engagement strategy in January, which includes two key initiatives, namely the establishment of a new youth parliament for Wales and the delivery of the recommendations of the digital news and information taskforce, due to report this term.

Diolch i’r Llywydd am yr ateb. Mae’n bosibl ei bod yn rhy hwyr ar gyfer ambell i berson y gwnes i gwrdd â nhw yn sioe Nefyn ddydd Llun, a oedd yn dal ddim yn credu’r gwahaniaeth rhwng y Cynulliad a’r Llywodraeth, ond, gyda’r to ifanc, ar gyfer pobl ifanc, mae’n hynod o bwysig eu bod yn gweld y gwaith rŷm ni’n ei wneud yma fel Cynulliad. Felly, roeddwn yn croesawu’r ffaith bod staff Comisiwn y Cynulliad yn y sioe ddydd Llun yn hyrwyddo’r ymgynghoriad sydd ar gael nawr ar senedd i bobl ifanc Cymru. A wnaiff y Llywydd felly amlinellu mwy o’r amcanion ar gyfer sefydlu senedd o’r fath, ac yn arbennig sut y bydd senedd o’r fath yn gallu cynrychioli pobl ifanc yn y gwahanol ardaloedd ac etholaethau yng Nghymru?

Thank you, Llywydd, for that answer. It may be too late for some of the people I met in the Nefyn show on Monday who still didn’t understand the difference between the Assembly and the Government, but with the younger generation and with young people, it’s extremely important that they see the work that we do here as an Assembly. Therefore, I welcome the fact that Commission staff were at the show on Monday, promoting the consultation that is open now on the youth parliament for Wales. So, will the Llywydd outline more of the objectives of the establishment of such a parliament, and particularly how such a parliament can represent young people in our various different areas and constituencies in Wales?

Diolch i’r Aelod am y cwestiwn, sydd yn amserol hefyd, fel mae’n digwydd, gan ein bod ni, fel Comisiwn a Chynulliad, wedi cychwyn ar yr ymgynghoriad gyda phobl yng Nghymru—pobl ifanc yng Nghymru yn benodol—ar sut y byddwn yn ei sefydlu, a pha fath o senedd ieuenctid yr ŷm ni yn mynd i’w sefydlu yma, i gyd-redeg gyda’n Cynulliad ni. Rŷm ni wedi cychwyn ar yr ymgynghoriad yna yn Ysgol Bro Pedr ddydd Gwener diwethaf. Rwy’n falch bod sioe Nefyn wedi bod yn gyfle hefyd i gysylltu’n uniongyrchol â phobl ifanc. Bydd yr ymgynghoriad yna yn mynd ymlaen tan ddiwedd mis Mehefin. Felly, rwy’n annog pob Aelod Cynulliad fan hyn i sicrhau bod pobl ifanc yn eich etholaethau a’ch rhanbarthau yn cymryd rhan, yn rhannu eu barn nhw ar ba fath o senedd ieuenctid yr ŷm ni eisiau ei gweld yma yng Nghymru. Pobl ifanc Cymru wnaeth ofyn i ni fel Aelodau Cynulliad i sefydlu senedd ieuenctid yma yng Nghymru yn y lle cyntaf. Rŷm ni eisiau iddyn nhw deimlo perchnogaeth o’r senedd ieuenctid yna o’r cychwyn cyntaf, ac rwy’n gobeithio, wrth inni symud ymlaen i wrando ar eu barn nhw, yn ffurfio’r senedd ieuenctid yna, y byddwn ni’n gallu gwneud hynny wrth fynd drwy’r hydref, ac y bydd ein senedd ieuenctid ni yma yng Nghymru am y tro cyntaf yn cael ei sefydlu ar gychwyn 2018.

May I thank the Member for the question, which is also timely as it so happens, as we as a Commission and an Assembly have started the consultation with the people of Wales—specifically the young people of Wales—on how we establish and what kind of youth parliament we wish to establish here, to run concurrently with our Assembly? We started that consultation at Ysgol Bro Pedr last week. I’m very pleased that the Nefyn show was also an opportunity to engage directly with young people. That consultation will continue until the end of June. Therefore, I urge every Assembly Member present to ensure that young people in your constituencies and in your regions participate, sharing their views on what kind of youth senedd or parliament we wish to see here in Wales. It’s the young people of Wales who asked us as Assembly Members to establish a youth parliament here in the first place. We want them to feel ownership of that youth parliament from the very beginning, and I hope that, as we move forward listening to their views, and in establishing that youth parliament, we will be able to do that through the autumn, and that our youth parliament here in Wales will be established for the first time at the beginning of 2018.

Cynulliad Cyfeillgar i Blant

A Child-friendly Assembly

3. Beth y mae Comisiwn y Cynulliad yn ei wneud i sicrhau bod y Cynulliad yn lle mwy cyfeillgar i blant? OAQ(5)0006(AC)

3. What is the Assembly Commission doing to make the Assembly a more child-friendly place? OAQ(5)0006(AC)

I thank you very much for your question. The Assembly Commission is committed to being family friendly and, in the Senedd, we do have family-friendly and accessible facilities that include baby-changing facilities, an accessible coffee shop, and a regular programme of events aimed at families. We will consult with those visiting families for their thoughts on further improvement to that environment.

Diolch yn fawr iawn am eich cwestiwn. Mae Comisiwn y Cynulliad wedi ymrwymo i fod yn gyfeillgar i deuluoedd, ac yn y Senedd, mae gennym gyfleusterau hygyrch a chyfeillgar i deuluoedd sy’n cynnwys cyfleusterau newid babanod, siop goffi hygyrch, a rhaglen reolaidd o ddigwyddiadau wedi’i hanelu at deuluoedd. Byddwn yn ymgynghori â’r teuluoedd sy’n ymweld i gael eu barn ar welliannau pellach i’r amgylchedd hwnnw.

I thank Joyce Watson for that response. My reason for asking this question is prompted by the apparent change of use of the parent and child suite to a meeting room. And when I’m talking, I'm talking about small children now, because I think the school-age children who come here in groups have a fantastic service in this Assembly. But the parent and child suite never really was a parent and child suite, because there never was anything in there for children, so it was a bit of a misnomer. But I think we do have an issue if families come here; if mothers want to breastfeed and want privacy, they do need somewhere comfortable and private where they can do that, and I do not think that what is available at the moment, which I assume is the child-changing facility, is suitable. And there isn’t a proper chair for mothers to breastfeed, which can be obtained very easily. So, I’m really asking if we could reassess all this and see how we can make this a child-friendly place, because we unfortunately don’t have a crèche for visiting parents, which is a big blow, really, because, you know, when people come to give evidence to committees, or when they make visits, it would be good if we could have a room, even if we can’t manage a crèche, where there are some playthings for children, some games. I’m sad to say I think a lot of that is sadly lacking in this Assembly building, so I would ask you if you could very seriously look at a proper chair for breastfeeding, somewhere private and comfortable, facilities with games for small children, and something to make it much more of a family-friendly place.

Diolch i Joyce Watson am ei hymateb. Caf fy ysgogi i ofyn y cwestiwn hwn gan ei bod yn ymddangos bod yr ystafell rhieni a phlant wedi troi’n ystafell gyfarfod. Ac wrth siarad, rwy’n sôn am blant ifanc iawn yn awr, gan y credaf fod y plant oed ysgol a ddaw yma mewn grwpiau yn cael gwasanaeth gwych yn y Cynulliad hwn. Ond nid oedd yr ystafell rhieni a phlant erioed yn ystafell rhieni a phlant mewn gwirionedd, gan na fu erioed unrhyw beth yno ar gyfer plant, felly roedd wedi’i chamenwi braidd. Ond credaf fod problem gennym os daw teuluoedd yma; os yw mamau’n dymuno bwydo ar y fron ac eisiau preifatrwydd, mae angen rhywle cyfforddus a phreifat arnynt i allu gwneud hynny, ac ni chredaf fod yr hyn sydd ar gael ar hyn o bryd, sef y cyfleuster newid plant rwy’n tybio, yn addas. Ac nid oes cadair addas i famau fwydo ar y fron, er y gellir cael gafael ar un yn hawdd iawn. Felly, rwy’n gofyn mewn gwirionedd a gawn ni ailasesu hyn i gyd a gweld sut y gallwn sicrhau bod y lle hwn yn gyfeillgar i blant, gan nad oes meithrinfa gennym ar gyfer rhieni sy’n ymweld, yn anffodus, ac mae hynny’n siomedig, mewn gwirionedd, oherwydd, wyddoch chi, pan fydd pobl yn dod i roi tystiolaeth i bwyllgorau, neu pan fyddant yn ymweld, byddai’n dda pe bai gennym ystafell sy’n cynnwys teganau a gemau i blant, hyd yn oed os na allwn ddod i ben â meithrinfa. Mae’n flin gennyf ddweud fy mod yn credu bod adeilad y Cynulliad ar ei hôl hi yn y pethau hyn felly gofynnaf i chi edrych o ddifrif ar gadair addas ar gyfer bwydo ar y fron, rhywle preifat a chyfforddus, cyfleusterau gyda gemau ar gyfer plant bach, a rhywbeth i sicrhau ei fod yn lle llawer mwy cyfeillgar i deuluoedd.

I actually agree with everything that you have just outlined. To that end, I have met with staff here to look at the way that we can improve the facilities. You’re absolutely right to say that the parent and child room had nothing in it, that it was pointless in that regard, but what I can tell the Member is that we have recognised those weaknesses and we are setting about making some of those changes. And one of the changes that has happened at the moment is the suite of gender-neutral toilet facilities that are available, and they will include baby-changing facilities as well, which clearly changes the emphasis as to who should be changing the nappies. Also, the cafe is at the moment child friendly and sells child-friendly produce, and it does offer seating options that include highchairs.

I couldn’t agree more with you about the breastfeeding facilities for mothers, and that we need to make it crystal clear that we are a very welcoming place for mothers, and particularly that we welcome those mothers who want to feed their babies while they’re here. And there are a number of things that we can do towards that, and I think signage plays a big part, and we’re looking at that now. We’re also looking at including privacy areas around the cafe area for mothers and families who would prefer a more private space, and we’re looking at ways that we can achieve that, maybe putting plants, exhibition screens or positioning the seats. I take very much on board what you’re saying about the breastfeeding chairs, and I give you my promise that I will move that forward as a Commissioner.

I think that you raise another point that hadn’t previously been raised, and that’s about witnesses coming here who might need help and might need support for their children, and I think that we can examine that. It is fair though also to point out that—and I used those facilities when I came here when I was re-elected in May—there are toys, soft toys and other games that are available for children, because I brought my grandchildren here and they played with them. It is the case also that the staff do all that they can to make those children welcome. The shortage, actually, is in the areas that you’ve outlined. I think that, in consultation with Members who are interested, but also those people who want to come here and think their needs aren’t met through what we currently have, we can only move towards improving that.

Rwy’n cytuno â phopeth rydych newydd ei amlinellu. I’r perwyl hwnnw, rwyf wedi cyfarfod â staff yma i ystyried sut y gallwn wella’r cyfleusterau. Rydych yn llygad eich lle pan ddywedwch nad oedd unrhyw beth yn yr ystafell rhieni a phlant, ei bod yn ddiwerth yn hynny o beth, ond gallaf ddweud wrth yr Aelod ein bod wedi cydnabod y gwendidau hynny a’n bod yn mynd ati i wneud rhai o’r newidiadau hynny. Ac un o’r newidiadau a wnaed yn barod yw’r cyfleusterau toiled niwtral o ran y rhywiau sydd ar gael, a byddant yn cynnwys cyfleusterau newid babanod hefyd, sy’n amlwg yn newid y pwyslais o ran pwy ddylai newid cewynnau. Yn ogystal, mae’r caffi’n gyfeillgar i blant ar hyn o bryd ac yn gwerthu cynnyrch sy’n gyfeillgar i blant, ac mae’n cynnig opsiynau o ran seddi, gan gynnwys cadeiriau uchel.

Rwy’n cytuno’n llwyr â chi ynglŷn â’r cyfleusterau bwydo ar y fron i famau, a bod angen inni ei gwneud yn hollol glir ein bod yn lle croesawgar iawn i famau, ac yn arbennig ein bod yn croesawu’r mamau sydd am fwydo’u babanod tra byddant yma. Ac mae nifer o bethau y gallwn eu gwneud i gyfrannu at hynny, a chredaf fod arwyddion yn rhan fawr o’r peth, ac rydym yn edrych ar hynny yn awr. Rydym yn edrych hefyd ar gynnwys mannau preifat o gwmpas y caffi ar gyfer mamau a theuluoedd y byddai’n well ganddynt fannau mwy preifat, ac rydym yn edrych ar ffyrdd y gallwn gyflawni hynny, efallai drwy osod planhigion, sgriniau arddangosfeydd neu osod seddi mewn mannau addas. Rwy’n derbyn yn llwyr yr hyn a ddywedwch ynglŷn â chadeiriau bwydo ar y fron, ac rwy’n addo i chi y byddaf yn bwrw ymlaen â hynny fel Comisiynydd.

Credaf eich bod wedi nodi pwynt arall na chafodd sylw o’r blaen, ynglŷn â thystion sy’n dod yma a allai fod angen cymorth a chefnogaeth ar gyfer eu plant, a chredaf y gallwn edrych ar hynny. Er hynny, mae’n deg nodi hefyd—a defnyddiais y cyfleusterau hynny pan ddeuthum yma ar ôl cael fy ailethol ym mis Mai—fod teganau, teganau meddal a gemau eraill ar gael yno i blant, gan fy mod wedi dod â fy wyrion yma a buont yn chwarae â hwy. Mae’n wir hefyd fod y staff yn gwneud eu gorau i groesawu’r plant hynny. Mae’r diffyg, mewn gwirionedd, i’w weld yn y mannau a ddisgrifiwch. Mewn ymgynghoriad ag Aelodau sydd â diddordeb, ond hefyd â’r bobl sy’n awyddus i ddod yma ac sydd o’r farn nad yw eu hanghenion yn cael eu diwallu drwy’r hyn sydd gennym ar hyn o bryd, credaf mai’r unig beth y gallwn ei wneud yw ceisio gwella hynny.

3. 3. Cwestiynau Amserol
3. 3. Topical Questions

We move to item 3 on the agenda, which is topical questions. This is the first time we’ve had topical questions under a topical questions session, and the first question is to be answered by the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-being and Sport, and it’s from Jeremy Miles, and Jeremy had the first 90-second statement, I believe, so, he’s trailblazing.

Symudwn at eitem 3 ar yr agenda, sef cwestiynau amserol. Dyma’r tro cyntaf i ni gael cwestiynau amserol mewn sesiwn gwestiynau amserol, a daw’r cwestiwn cyntaf gan Jeremy Miles i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Iechyd, Llesiant a Chwaraeon, a chredaf mai Jeremy a wnaeth y datganiad 90 eiliad cyntaf hefyd, felly mae’n arloesi yn hynny o beth.

Proffylacsis Cyn-gysylltiad

Pre-exposure Prophylaxis

Thank you, Deputy Llywydd. The Llywydd has shown great wisdom in selecting questions, as usual.

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd. Mae’r Llywydd wedi dangos cryn ddoethineb wrth ddewis cwestiynau, fel arfer.

A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am ei benderfyniad i gymeradwyo defnyddio proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad yng Nghymru fel rhan o astudiaeth? TAQ(5)0155(HWS)

Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement about his decision to approve the use of pre-exposure prophylaxis in Wales as part of a study? TAQ(5)0155(HWS)

Thank you for the question. I have discussed the framework for the study with both Public Health Wales and the Terrence Higgins Trust, as well as officials within the Welsh Government. I issued a Welsh Government statement following a meeting that took place yesterday with both Public Health Wales and the Terrence Higgins Trust. I do welcome the support from the Terrence Higgins Trust to help promote access to Truvada, the branded PrEP medicine that is available, and the wider care package that will be available throughout the course of the study.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Rwyf wedi trafod y fframwaith ar gyfer yr astudiaeth gydag Iechyd Cyhoeddus Cymru ac Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins, yn ogystal â swyddogion o Lywodraeth Cymru. Cyhoeddais ddatganiad gan Lywodraeth Cymru yn dilyn cyfarfod a gynhaliwyd ddoe gydag Iechyd Cyhoeddus Cymru ac Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins. Croesawaf y gefnogaeth gan Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins i helpu i hyrwyddo mynediad at Truvada, y feddyginiaeth brand proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad sydd ar gael, a’r pecyn gofal ehangach a fydd ar gael drwy gydol yr astudiaeth.

Can I thank the Cabinet Secretary for his reply and thank him also for the decision that he has taken in the last few days, and thank him for the time that he and his officials have made available to myself and others to discuss this important matter?

The health, emotional relationship and social consequences of an HIV diagnosis can be very, very serious, and although many, many people are living into later life with HIV medication, it’s incumbent on us to make available to people in Wales the tools that they need to manage their health prudently and to reduce HIV transmission. The clinical effectiveness of Truvada is well established—between 86 and 100 per cent effective at reducing HIV transmission as part of a range of safe sex measures. So, I welcome the decision that he has taken.

He has mentioned that this will be rolled out across Wales. Can he confirm that it will be available across Wales from the outset, mindful of the fact that there is an uneven distribution, if you like, of genitourinary medicine clinics across Wales? Secondly, from the perspective of the patient, will participating in the study alter that experience for the patient? Will there be additional expectations from the patient, above and beyond the clinical expectations? Thirdly, what measures does he envisage being taken to raise awareness amongst communities that are particularly at risk of HIV transmission of the availability of PrEP on the NHS in Wales?

A gaf fi ddiolch i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet am ei ateb, a diolch iddo hefyd am y penderfyniad a wnaeth yn ystod y dyddiau diwethaf, a diolch iddo am yr amser y mae ef a’i swyddogion wedi’i roi i mi ac i eraill ar gyfer trafod y mater pwysig hwn?

Gall canlyniadau diagnosis o HIV o ran iechyd, perthynas emosiynol ac yn gymdeithasol fod yn ddifrifol iawn, ac er bod llawer iawn o bobl yn byw yn hŷn gyda meddyginiaeth HIV, mae’n ddyletswydd arnom i sicrhau bod gan bobl Cymru yr arfau angenrheidiol i reoli eu hiechyd yn ddoeth ac i atal trosglwyddo HIV. Mae effeithiolrwydd clinigol Truvada wedi’i brofi’n dda—rhwng 86 a 100 y cant o effeithiolrwydd i atal trosglwyddo HIV fel rhan o ystod o fesurau rhyw diogel. Felly, croesawaf y penderfyniad a wnaeth.

Mae wedi crybwyll y bydd hyn yn cael ei gyflwyno ledled Cymru. A all gadarnhau y bydd ar gael ledled Cymru o’r cychwyn cyntaf, gan gofio bod clinigau meddygaeth genhedlol-wrinol wedi’u dosbarthu’n anghyson, os mynnwch, ledled Cymru? Yn ail, o safbwynt y claf, a fydd cymryd rhan yn yr astudiaeth yn newid y profiad hwnnw i’r claf? A fydd unrhyw ddisgwyliadau ychwanegol mewn perthynas â’r claf, y tu hwnt i’r disgwyliadau clinigol? Yn drydydd, pa gamau y mae’n rhagweld a gymerir i godi ymwybyddiaeth ymhlith cymunedau sydd mewn perygl arbennig o drosglwyddo HIV ynglŷn ag argaeledd proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad ar y GIG yng Nghymru?

Thank you for that series of questions. I think you’re right in terms of awareness raising, to start off with, that there is a real challenge in continuing the message about the reality of HIV and reducing the number of people with HIV in Wales. We still have people every year who contract HIV in Wales, so there’s a real need to improve our ability to reduce the numbers of people who have HIV and then the treatment and care for them as well.

There is something here about both the decision and the awareness around this, because we recognise there are groups of people who are likely to be at risk of HIV, or indeed who may have it and are reticent about coming forward. So, actually having a study, and the way that’s undertaken should help us to understand the levels of people who are at risk and actually the economic benefits of PrEP itself as well. That’s part of the reason behind the study, but I also see it within that wider context of care provided, too. I expect the study to start by the end of July this summer, so it will start in a matter of months. I can assure you that it will be available across all of Wales; it won’t be in particular parts first or afterwards, so it is a genuine all-Wales approach. Every single person where this is clinically appropriate will have PrEP made available to them—no extra hurdles or barriers to get over.

I think it’s also important to make clear that this will be primarily undertaken through GUM clinics. I know there’s a challenge through mid Wales in particular about the availability and access to them, and that’s part of the challenge in designing this, and in getting people access to an appropriate place to have that care and follow-up support undertaken. But it’s where most people access their support and advice on these areas. People are less likely to go to their general practitioner for this particular form of support and advice. So, that’s why we’re making sure, in the design of the study, that GUM clinics will be the primary place both for the prescribing, but also the follow-up treatment, care and testing and understanding about adherence to as well.

I’m looking forward to receiving back from Public Health Wales clear parameters about the study, how it will be undertaken, and the assessment of the value and the impact of the study, and the learning on the behaviour of individuals who are at most risk as well. Obviously, there’s a lot of learning we can get from this, and I look forward to being able to update Members, hopefully before recess, about where we are on the start of this particular study—that will be another part of awareness raising—but, in particular, what we will do with third sector organisations like the Terrence Higgins Trust and others to raise awareness from those most at risk as well. So, very pertinent questions, which are absolutely in my mind as we take this work forward.

Diolch am y gyfres honno o gwestiynau. Credaf eich bod yn iawn o ran codi ymwybyddiaeth, i gychwyn, fod her go iawn i barhau â’r neges ynglŷn â realiti HIV a lleihau nifer y bobl â HIV yng Nghymru. Mae gennym bobl bob blwyddyn sy’n dal HIV yng Nghymru o hyd, felly mae gwir angen gwella ein gallu i leihau nifer y bobl sydd â HIV, a gwella’r driniaeth a’r gofal ar eu cyfer hefyd.

Mae rhywbeth yma sy’n ymwneud â’r penderfyniad a’r ymwybyddiaeth ynglŷn â hyn, gan ein bod yn cydnabod bod yna grwpiau o bobl sy’n debygol o fod mewn perygl o ddal HIV, neu’n wir, a allai fod wedi’i ddal ac sy’n amharod i ofyn am gymorth. Felly, dylai cynnal astudiaeth, a’r ffordd y cynhelir yr astudiaeth honno, ein helpu i ddeall faint o bobl sydd mewn perygl, a manteision economaidd proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad hefyd mewn gwirionedd. Dyna ran o’r rheswm dros yr astudiaeth, ond rwyf hefyd yn ei gweld yn rhan o gyd-destun ehangach y gofal a ddarperir. Rwy’n disgwyl i’r astudiaeth ddechrau cyn diwedd mis Gorffennaf eleni, felly bydd yn dechrau mewn ychydig fisoedd. Gallaf roi sicrwydd i chi y bydd ar gael ledled Cymru gyfan; ni fydd yn cyrraedd ardaloedd penodol yn gynt neu’n hwyrach, felly mae’n ddull Cymru gyfan go iawn. Bydd proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad ar gael i bob unigolyn lle y bo hynny’n briodol yn glinigol—heb unrhyw rwystrau ychwanegol i’w goresgyn.

Credaf ei bod hefyd yn bwysig egluro y bydd hyn yn cael ei wneud yn bennaf drwy glinigau meddygaeth genhedlol-wrinol. Gwn fod heriau yng nghanolbarth Cymru yn benodol o ran argaeledd a mynediad atynt, ac mae hynny’n rhan o’r her wrth gynllunio hyn, ac wrth sicrhau bod gan bobl fynediad i le addas i gael y gofal hwnnw yn ogystal â chymorth dilynol. Ond dyna ble y caiff y rhan fwyaf o bobl afael ar gymorth a chyngor ynglŷn â’r meysydd hyn. Mae pobl yn llai tebygol o fynd at eu meddyg teulu am y math hwn o gymorth a chyngor. Felly, dyna pam rydym yn gwneud yn siŵr, wrth gynllunio’r astudiaeth, mai clinigau meddygaeth genhedlol-wrinol fydd y prif fan ar gyfer presgripsiynu yn ogystal â’r driniaeth ddilynol, gofal a phrofi, a dealltwriaeth ynglŷn â glynu at y driniaeth hefyd.

Edrychaf ymlaen at dderbyn paramedrau clir ynglŷn â’r astudiaeth, sut y caiff ei chynnal ac asesiad o werth ac effaith yr astudiaeth gan Iechyd Cyhoeddus Cymru, yn ogystal â’r hyn a ddysgir ynglŷn ag ymddygiad yr unigolion sy’n wynebu’r perygl mwyaf. Yn amlwg, gallwn ddysgu llawer o hyn, ac edrychaf ymlaen at allu rhoi’r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf i’r Aelodau cyn y toriad, gobeithio, ynglŷn â ble rydym ar ddechrau’r astudiaeth benodol hon—bydd hynny’n rhan arall o’r broses o godi ymwybyddiaeth—ond yn benodol, yr hyn a wnawn gyda mudiadau trydydd sector fel Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins ac eraill i godi ymwybyddiaeth ymhlith y rhai sy’n wynebu’r perygl mwyaf hefyd. Cwestiynau perthnasol iawn, felly, y byddaf yn bendant yn eu hystyried wrth i ni ddatblygu’r gwaith.

The results of the UK-based 2015 PROUD study, evaluating the effectiveness of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, amongst a high-risk group of gay and bisexual men, showed that daily use reduced the number of HIV infections by 86 per cent in this group, and that, when taken properly, the effectiveness was nearly 100 per cent. Noting that, how do you respond, given your comment about your engagement with the Terrence Higgins Trust, to their call for this to be provided alongside other prevention interventions, such as condom use, behaviour change, and regular HIV testing?

Dangosodd canlyniadau’r astudiaeth PROUD a gynhaliwyd yn y DU yn 2015 i werthuso effeithiolrwydd proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad HIV, neu PrEP, ymhlith grŵp risg uchel o ddynion hoyw a deurywiol, fod defnydd dyddiol ohono yn lleihau nifer yr heintiau HIV 86 y cant yn y grŵp hwn, ac o’i gymryd yn y ffordd gywir, roedd ei effeithiolrwydd bron yn 100 y cant. O gofio hynny, sut rydych yn ymateb, o ystyried eich sylw ynglŷn â’ch ymgysylltiad ag Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins, i’w galwad i ddarparu hwn ochr yn ochr â’u hymyriadau atal eraill, megis defnyddio condomau, newid ymddygiad, a phrofion HIV rheolaidd?

Well, I’m happy to confirm my response. That’s exactly what Jeremy Miles has called for, it’s exactly what the Terrence Higgins Trust has called for, and it’s part of what the study will be looking at. It won’t just be PrEP in an isolated way—it’s seeing it in its context, as part of the work that we want to do to try and ensure that as many people as possible do not acquire HIV. So, it’s an important part of where we are. And it’s also about understanding the real level of incidence rates that exist in Wales, because we do think we probably undercount and underestimate what they are. So, there are real challenges that we understand from the advice we’ve had from the All Wales Medicines Strategy Group. But we are looking to resolve those by having this study and making sure that PrEP is genuinely available across the whole country for everyone where it’s clinically appropriate. And that’s a really important step forward for us here in Wales.

Wel, rwy’n fwy na pharod i gadarnhau fy ymateb. Dyna’n union y mae Jeremy Miles wedi galw amdano, dyna’n union y mae Ymddiriedolaeth Terrence Higgins wedi galw amdano, ac mae’n rhan o’r hyn y bydd yr astudiaeth yn edrych arno. Nid proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad mewn ffordd ynysig yn unig fydd hyn—mae’n ymwneud â’i weld yn ei gyd-destun, fel rhan o’r gwaith y dymunwn ei wneud i geisio sicrhau bod cymaint o bobl â phosibl yn osgoi dal HIV. Felly, mae’n rhan bwysig o’n sefyllfa ar hyn o bryd. Ac mae’n ymwneud hefyd â deall gwir lefel cyfraddau achosion yng Nghymru, gan y credwn ein bod yn ôl pob tebyg yn eu tangyfrif ac yn eu tanamcangyfrif. Felly, mae yna heriau gwirioneddol rydym yn eu deall oherwydd y cyngor a gawsom gan Grŵp Strategaeth Feddyginiaethau Cymru. Ond rydym yn gobeithio eu datrys drwy gynnal yr astudiaeth hon a sicrhau bod proffylacsis cyn-gysylltiad ar gael go iawn ledled y wlad i bawb lle y bo’n briodol yn glinigol. Ac mae hwnnw’n gam pwysig iawn ymlaen i ni yma yng Nghymru.

Thank you very much. And the second topical question this afternoon, again to be answered by the Cabinet Secretary for Health, Well-being and Sport, is from Darren Millar.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. A daw’r ail gwestiwn amserol y prynhawn yma, eto i’w ateb gan Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Iechyd, Llesiant a Chwaraeon, gan Darren Millar.

Ward Tawel Fan yn Ysbyty Glan Clwyd

The Tawel Fan Ward at Glan Clwyd Hospital

A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am yr archwiliad sy’n cael ei gynnal gan Fwrdd Iechyd Betsi Cadwaladr i adroddiadau y gallai ansawdd y gofal a gafodd cleifion dementia ar ward Tawel Fan yn Ysbyty Glan Clwyd fod wedi cyfrannu at o leiaf saith o farwolaethau? TAQ(5)0156(HWS)

Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on the investigation being undertaken by Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board into reports that the quality of care for dementia patients on the Tawel Fan ward at Glan Clwyd Hospital may have contributed to at least seven deaths? TAQ(5)0156(HWS)

As the Member, and other Assembly Members, will be aware, I established an independent panel to oversee the HASCAS—that’s the Health and Social Care Advisory Service—investigation and the Donna Ockenden review into the care of patients on Tawel Fan. Whether the quality of care provided could have been a contributing factor to the death of some patients will, of course, be what we’re looking to establish as part of that HASCAS investigation.

Fel y gŵyr yr Aelod, ac Aelodau eraill y Cynulliad, sefydlais banel annibynnol i oruchwylio ymchwiliad y Gwasanaeth Cynghori ar Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol ac adolygiad Donna Ockenden o ofal cleifion ar ward Tawel Fan. Yr hyn y bwriadwn ei sefydlu yn rhan o ymchwiliad y Gwasanaeth Cynghori ar Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol, wrth gwrs, yw a allai ansawdd y gofal a ddarparwyd fod wedi bod yn ffactor a gyfrannodd at farwolaeth rhai cleifion.

Thank you for that answer, Cabinet Secretary. These are very concerning remarks, which have been made in letters to patients’ families in north Wales. And, given that we are now two years into special measures, almost, and around two and a half years since the publication of the report by Donna Ockenden into the institutional abuse on the Tawel Fan ward, it will come as a serious concern that there may be individuals who are still employed by the NHS, paid for by the taxpayer in terms of their salaries, who are yet to lose their employment, and are yet to have to face resignation, and may still be working somewhere in the health service in spite of the potential harm that they may have caused to individuals in this particular ward.

I am concerned that some of the cultural issues that were identified in Donna Ockenden’s report are still prevalent in mental health services in north Wales, and that there’s still significant pressure on in-patient bed capacity. Just this week, I had an e-mail from a family whose loved one needed to be sectioned because of their poor mental health, and had to be sent to Bristol, because there were insufficient numbers of beds in north Wales. That is unacceptable. And it’s also unacceptable that some patients are having to sleep on sofas in lounges in mental health wards because of insufficient numbers of beds, and that some female patients are also having to sleep on male mental health wards in north Wales.

Clearly, there are still huge challenges. There are still issues that people in north Wales are facing, and we must ensure that we learn lessons from what went wrong. I appreciate that the investigations are continuing, and that those are in-depth investigations, and we have to get to the truth in terms of what has been going on in north Wales, but I would appreciate it, Cabinet Secretary, if you could give some assurances that, should those investigations find that harm has been caused, you will discuss with the police and the Crown Prosecution Service the possibility of bringing prosecutions for those responsible for causing harm, particularly where that harm may have led to deaths, because these are very serious issues, which people are very concerned about in north Wales, and we’re not confident that sufficient progress is being made to address those concerns.

Diolch am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Mae’r sylwadau hyn, a wnaed mewn llythyrau i deuluoedd cleifion yng ngogledd Cymru, yn peri cryn bryder. Ac o ystyried bod bron i ddwy flynedd bellach ers cyflwyno mesurau arbennig, a bod oddeutu dwy flynedd a hanner ers cyhoeddi adroddiad Donna Ockenden ar gam-drin sefydliadol ar ward Tawel Fan, bydd yn peri cryn bryder fod rhai unigolion yn dal i gael eu cyflogi gan y GIG, gyda’u cyflogau’n cael eu talu gan y trethdalwyr, sydd eto i golli eu gwaith ac sydd eto i wynebu cael eu diswyddo, ac sydd efallai’n dal i weithio yn y gwasanaeth iechyd er gwaethaf y niwed posibl y gallent fod wedi’i achosi i unigolion ar y ward hon.

Rwy’n bryderus fod rhai o’r materion diwylliannol a nodwyd yn adroddiad Donna Ockenden yn dal i fod yn gyffredin yn y gwasanaethau iechyd meddwl yng ngogledd Cymru, a bod pwysau sylweddol o hyd ar gapasiti gwelyau cleifion mewnol. Yr wythnos hon, cefais e-bost gan deulu y bu’n rhaid anfon rhywun sy’n annwyl iddynt i ward iechyd meddwl oherwydd eu hiechyd meddwl gwael, a bu’n rhaid eu hanfon i Fryste, gan nad oedd digon o welyau yng ngogledd Cymru. Mae hynny’n annerbyniol. Ac mae hefyd yn annerbyniol fod rhai cleifion yn gorfod cysgu ar soffas mewn lolfeydd ar wardiau iechyd meddwl gan nad oes digon o welyau, a bod rhai cleifion benywaidd hefyd yn gorfod cysgu ar wardiau iechyd meddwl gwrywaidd yng ngogledd Cymru.

Yn amlwg, ceir heriau enfawr o hyd. Mae pobl yng ngogledd Cymru yn dal i wynebu problemau, ac mae’n rhaid inni sicrhau ein bod yn dysgu gwersi o’r hyn a aeth o’i le. Rwy’n derbyn bod yr ymchwiliadau yn dal i fynd rhagddynt, a’u bod yn ymchwiliadau manwl, a bod yn rhaid i ni ddod o hyd i’r gwirionedd o ran yr hyn sydd wedi bod yn digwydd yng ngogledd Cymru, ond byddwn yn gwerthfawrogi, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, pe gallech roi rhyw sicrwydd, os yw’r ymchwiliadau hynny’n canfod bod niwed wedi’i achosi, y byddwch yn trafod y posibilrwydd o erlyn y rhai a fu’n gyfrifol am achosi’r niwed gyda’r heddlu a Gwasanaeth Erlyn y Goron, yn enwedig lle y gallai’r niwed hwnnw fod wedi arwain at farwolaethau, gan fod y rhain yn faterion difrifol iawn, ac mae pobl yn bryderus iawn yn eu cylch yng ngogledd Cymru, ac nid ydym yn hyderus fod digon o gynnydd yn cael ei wneud i fynd i’r afael â’r pryderon hynny.

Thank you for that series of slightly different questions, and I’ll try to answer them in the different parts in which they were put. I want to start by saying that, of course, I understand the significant and continuing public interest and concern into the events reported around Tawel Fan, and it’s been actually very difficult to meet the understandable demand for the process to be concluded as quickly as possible, which is entirely understandable, from the families affected and the wider concerned community within north Wales and beyond, but having a process that is properly robust, because part of my concern has always been, despite my personal desire to see this concluded quickly, that, if you don’t have a properly robust process, you potentially open up not just the health service, but individual families, to a wholly unsatisfactory position where the process itself collapses and you don’t actually deliver the sort of justice that I understand people want to see. And I do appreciate the fact that you indicated that the most important thing is to get to the truth, and, indeed, thousands of different documents have been reviewed, and, because of the rigour undertaken, there have been further fields and avenues of investigation undertaken that go beyond the number of people identified in the Ockenden report. And that’s important for you to understand, I think—there is real rigour that’s been undertaken in what is now a review with real, genuine independent oversight. So, the health board don’t control and have oversight of the HASCAS review, so there should be no misunderstanding that the health board are somehow going to re-interpret or alter the findings of this genuinely independent review.

I’ve not had sight of the letters that I understand have been reported, but, in terms of the challenge around harm caused and understanding what comes after that, there’ll be a number of different processes to go through, in which the Government won’t have a role to undertake. For example, the professional issues—that will be for the professional bodies to undertake. We expect them to do their job. I am concerned though about the length of time it takes for fitness-to-practice proceedings to be undertaken—that’s not a party political issue; it’s an issue of genuine concern across the Chamber—regardless of which professional body people are answerable to and responsible for.

On the point of prosecutions, I think it’s really important that Government politicians don’t get into the business where we are saying that we expect or require the police and the Crown Prosecution Service to prosecute. There is such a level of public interest that I expect the police to be properly aware that when the investigation reports they will need to review it and they will need to respond and indicate. And, at the time the report is available, I see no reason for me not to ask the police to confirm their position, but I think going beyond that would not be appropriate for me to do. Those are independent decisions to be made by both the police and the Crown Prosecution Service about matters that they think they could, should, and have a duty to investigate and then conclusions they actually reach. But I’m happy at the end of this process to ask the police for their view on whether they expect to take any further action.

On the broader cultural issues that you identify, I think this is an area where people should look again at the process of special measures with the oversight provided by regulators. This isn’t a Government politician deciding, ‘This is what I want the conclusion to be’. And I’ve always, as I know that Mark Drakeford has before me, tried to be really clear that this won’t be undertaken for the convenience of a Government politician in this particular role. It must be about independent advice from regulators about progress that has and has not been made through special measures, and about whether the organisation comes up, whether sufficient progress has been made in each of the areas. And mental health services are, I think, the most significant area of concern that caused the health board to be put into special measures. The new director has made a real difference, I think, but there is an understanding that there is a real and significant challenge in reconfiguring and improving that service. What should give me and other Members confidence is not just the process undertaken with independent regulators, but they recognise that real progress has been made to date. But it is about the further progress that is still needed. And I would not pretend to you or any concerned citizen that everything is perfect and that progress is smooth and easy. But we will have a properly transparent review from those regulators when they undertake their regular review of special measures, and, again, I will receive that and that will be publicly available, as have previous reports.

Diolch am y gyfres honno o gwestiynau ychydig yn wahanol, a byddaf yn ceisio eu hateb yn ôl y gwahanol rannau y cawsant eu cyflwyno. Rwyf am ddechrau drwy ddweud fy mod, wrth gwrs, yn deall y diddordeb mawr a’r pryder cyhoeddus parhaus ynglŷn â’r digwyddiadau sy’n ymwneud â ward Tawel Fan, ac mae wedi bod yn anodd iawn ateb y galw dealladwy am gwblhau’r broses honno cyn gynted ag y bo modd, sy’n gwbl ddealladwy, gan y teuluoedd yr effeithiwyd arnynt a’r gymuned ehangach yng ngogledd Cymru a thu hwnt, a chael proses sy’n ddigon cadarn, gan mai’r hyn y bûm yn rhannol bryderus yn ei gylch o’r cychwyn, er gwaethaf fy awydd personol i weld hyn yn dod i ben yn gyflym, os nad oes gennych broses ddigon cadarn, eich bod o bosibl yn gwneud nid yn unig y gwasanaeth iechyd, ond y teuluoedd unigol, yn agored i sefyllfa hollol anfoddhaol lle y mae’r broses ei hun yn methu a lle nad ydych yn darparu’r math o gyfiawnder rwy’n ymwybodol fod pobl yn awyddus i’w weld. Ac rwy’n derbyn y ffaith a grybwyllwyd gennych mai’r peth pwysicaf yw canfod y gwir, ac yn wir, mae miloedd o ddogfennau gwahanol wedi cael eu hadolygu, ac oherwydd trylwyredd y gwaith a wnaed, cynhaliwyd ymchwiliadau pellach i feysydd a llwybrau y tu hwnt i nifer y bobl a nodwyd yn adroddiad Ockenden. A chredaf ei bod yn bwysig eich bod yn deall—cafwyd cryn drylwyredd yn yr hyn sydd bellach yn adolygiad gydag arolygiaeth annibynnol wirioneddol ddilys. Felly, nid yw’r bwrdd iechyd yn rheoli neu’n goruchwylio adolygiad y Gwasanaeth Cynghori ar Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol, felly ni ddylid camddeall bod y bwrdd iechyd, rywsut, yn mynd i ailddehongli neu newid canfyddiadau’r adolygiad gwirioneddol annibynnol hwn.

Nid wyf wedi gweld y llythyrau a gofnodwyd yn ôl yr hyn a ddeallaf, ond o ran yr her mewn perthynas â’r niwed a achoswyd a deall yr hyn a ddaw ar ôl hynny, bydd angen cwblhau sawl proses wahanol, ac ni fydd gan y Llywodraeth ran i’w chwarae ynddynt. Er enghraifft, y materion proffesiynol—cyfrifoldeb y cyrff proffesiynol fydd ymgymryd â hynny. Rydym yn disgwyl iddynt wneud eu gwaith. Rwy’n bryderus, fodd bynnag, ynglŷn â faint o amser y mae’n ei gymryd i gynnal achosion addasrwydd i ymarfer—nid mater gwleidyddol mo hwn; ond mater o bwys gwirioneddol ar draws y Siambr—ni waeth pa gorff proffesiynol y mae pobl yn atebol iddo ac yn gyfrifol amdano.

O ran erlyniadau, credaf ei bod yn bwysig iawn nad yw gwleidyddion Llywodraeth yn dechrau dweud ein bod yn disgwyl neu’n mynnu bod yr heddlu a Gwasanaeth Erlyn y Goron yn erlyn. Oherwydd lefel y diddordeb cyhoeddus yn hyn, rwy’n disgwyl i’r heddlu fod yn hollol ymwybodol y bydd angen iddynt adolygu’r ymchwiliad pan fydd yn adrodd yn ôl, ac y bydd angen iddynt ymateb a chyfeirio. A phan fydd yr adroddiad ar gael, ni welaf unrhyw reswm i mi beidio â gofyn i’r heddlu gadarnhau eu safbwynt, ond ni chredaf y byddai’n briodol i mi fynd ymhellach na hynny. Mae’r rheini’n benderfyniadau annibynnol ar gyfer yr heddlu a Gwasanaeth Erlyn y Goron ynglŷn â materion y credant y gallent, y dylent, ac y mae ganddynt ddyletswydd i’w hymchwilio a dod i gasgliadau yn eu cylch. Ond ar ddiwedd y broses hon, byddaf yn fwy na pharod i ofyn i’r heddlu a ydynt yn disgwyl y byddant yn rhoi unrhyw gamau pellach ar waith.

O ran y materion diwylliannol ehangach a nodwyd gennych, credaf fod hwn yn faes lle y dylai pobl edrych eto ar broses mesurau arbennig gyda rheoleiddwyr yn darparu’r arolygiaeth. Nid yw hyn yn ymwneud â gwleidydd Llywodraeth yn penderfynu, ‘Dyma rwy’n dymuno i’r casgliad fod’. Ac rwyf innau bob amser, fel Mark Drakeford o’m blaen, wedi ceisio bod yn glir iawn na fydd hyn yn digwydd er hwylustod gwleidydd Llywodraeth yn y rôl benodol hon. Dylai ymwneud â chyngor annibynnol gan reoleiddwyr ynglŷn â chynnydd a wnaed ac na wnaed drwy fesurau arbennig, ac ynglŷn ag a yw’r sefydliad yn cyrraedd y safon, ac a wnaed digon o gynnydd ym mhob un o’r meysydd. A chredaf mai gwasanaethau iechyd meddwl yw’r maes pryder mwyaf arwyddocaol a arweiniodd at wneud y bwrdd iechyd yn destun mesurau arbennig. Credaf fod y cyfarwyddwr newydd wedi gwneud cryn wahaniaeth, ond ceir dealltwriaeth fod her wirioneddol a sylweddol i’w hwynebu o ran ailgyflunio a gwella’r gwasanaeth hwnnw. Yr hyn a ddylai roi hyder i mi a’r Aelodau eraill yw nid yn unig y broses a ddilynwyd gyda rheoleiddwyr annibynnol, ond y ffaith eu bod yn cydnabod bod cynnydd gwirioneddol wedi’i wneud hyd yn hyn. Ond mae hyn yn ymwneud â’r cynnydd pellach sydd ei angen o hyd. Ac ni fyddwn yn esgus wrthych chi neu unrhyw ddinesydd arall sy’n pryderu ynglŷn â hyn fod y cynnydd yn esmwyth a rhwydd. Ond fe gawn adolygiad tryloyw priodol gan y rheoleiddwyr pan fyddant yn cynnal eu hadolygiad rheolaidd o’r mesurau arbennig, ac unwaith eto, byddaf yn ei gael a bydd ar gael i’r cyhoedd, fel yr adroddiadau blaenorol.

Clearly, we have to await the full investigation before we can make any decisions, or before any of the professional bodies can make any decisions about what consequences might flow on from that, so I agree with what the Cabinet Secretary has said and note his strong words in that regard. However, there have been administrative consequences from Tawel Fan: the chief executive was suspended and then, in turn, as the Minister has just outlined, the health board itself was taken into special measures. So, I want to understand what he’s done, as the Cabinet Secretary, around the administration now of Besti Cadwaladr, and two things in particular: can he just confirm that not a penny has been paid to the members of Betsi Cadwaladr health board after it was taken into special measures, because it would be wrong, wouldn’t it, for failure to be rewarded in that way? Secondly, can he also confirm that no money has been paid to Professor Trevor Purt after he began working in England?

Yn amlwg, mae’n rhaid i ni aros am yr ymchwiliad llawn cyn y gallwn wneud unrhyw benderfyniadau, neu cyn y gall unrhyw un o’r cyrff proffesiynol wneud unrhyw benderfyniadau ynglŷn â pha ganlyniadau a allai ddeillio o hynny, felly rwy’n cytuno â’r hyn y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi’i ddweud a nodaf ei eiriau cryf yn hynny o beth. Fodd bynnag, cafwyd canlyniadau gweinyddol yn sgil Tawel Fan: cafodd y prif weithredwr ei atal dros dro, ac yna, yn ei dro, fel y mae’r Gweinidog newydd amlinellu, gwnaed y bwrdd iechyd ei hun yn destun mesurau arbennig. Felly, rwy’n awyddus i ddeall yr hyn y mae wedi’i wneud, fel Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ynglŷn â gweinyddiaeth Betsi Cadwaladr, a dau beth yn benodol: a all gadarnhau nad oes ceiniog wedi’i thalu i aelodau bwrdd iechyd Betsi Cadwaladr ar ôl ei wneud yn destun mesurau arbennig, gan y byddai’n anghywir gwobrwyo methiant yn y ffordd honno, oni fyddai? Yn ail, a all gadarnhau hefyd nad oes unrhyw arian wedi’i dalu i’r Athro Trevor Purt ar ôl iddo ddechrau gweithio yn Lloegr?

On Professor Purt, we were completely clear about the secondment arrangement for him to leave the health service in Wales. He is now no longer part of the service. We are absolutely transparent about the arrangement for him to leave, including the financial measures that took place with that.

In terms of your comment that members of Betsi Cadwaladr health board have not been paid a single penny, I assume that you don’t mean the members of staff who work for Betsi Cadwaladr, but that you’re talking about the independent members who are appointed. Well, they are still undertaking a role—they’re still acting—and if I took the decision that they should not be paid, I should actually just simply remove them rather than simply saying, ‘I’m going to punish you by effectively taking a disciplinary measure to remove the moneys that you’re entitled to in undertaking this public appointment’. I think it’s really important that, in properly holding people to account, we don’t look for easy or headline-grabbing measures to try and say, ‘This is what we should or must do’.

For me, the most important thing is that the health board improves. You do need members there who are committed to providing the scrutiny that wasn’t undertaken to the level that we’d want it to in the past. We’ve seen a review of people; we’ve seen actually a renewal of people as independent members on that health board. We’ve seen new executive members come in, so there are new leadership arrangements in place within the health board: a new executive nurse director, a new medical director and a new chief executive officer as well. So, it’s really important to understand that the leadership has moved on from the time when the organisation went into special measures. For me, it must always be: are we seeing progress being made? Are we getting the independent reassurance from regulators that real progress is being made, and what are the continuing channels that we need to see resolved within Betsi Cadwladr? Because that, for me, is the most important thing, because I want people living in north Wales to have the same high-quality health service that I believe that every citizen in any part of Wales in entitled to.

O ran yr Athro Purt, roeddem yn gwbl glir ynglŷn â’r trefniant secondiad iddo adael y gwasanaeth iechyd yng Nghymru. Nid yw’n rhan o’r gwasanaeth bellach. Rydym yn gwbl dryloyw ynghylch y trefniant iddo adael, gan gynnwys y mesurau ariannol ynghlwm wrth hynny.

O ran eich sylwadau nad yw aelodau bwrdd iechyd Betsi Cadwaladr wedi derbyn ceiniog, rwy’n cymryd nad ydych yn golygu aelodau staff sy’n gweithio i Betsi Cadwaladr, ond eich bod yn sôn am yr aelodau annibynnol sy’n cael eu penodi. Wel, maent yn dal i gyflawni rôl—maent yn dal i weithredu—a phe bawn yn penderfynu na ddylent gael eu talu, byddwn yn cael gwared arnynt yn hytrach na dweud, ‘Rwy’n mynd i’ch cosbi drwy gymryd camau disgyblu i bob pwrpas er mwyn diddymu’r arian y mae gennych hawl i’w dderbyn wrth gyflawni’r penodiad cyhoeddus hwn’. Credaf ei bod yn bwysig iawn, wrth ddwyn pobl i gyfrif yn briodol, nad ydym yn edrych am fesurau hawdd neu rai sy’n bachu’r penawdau a cheisio dweud, ‘Dyma beth y dylem ei wneud neu dyma beth sy’n rhaid i ni ei wneud’.

I mi, y peth pwysicaf yw bod y bwrdd iechyd yn gwella. Mae angen aelodau yno sydd wedi ymrwymo i ddarparu’r craffu nad oedd yn cael ei wneud yn y gorffennol i’r graddau y byddem yn dymuno’i weld. Rydym wedi gweld pobl yn cael eu hadolygu; rydym wedi gweld pobl newydd yn cael eu penodi fel aelodau annibynnol ar y bwrdd iechyd hwnnw. Rydym wedi gweld aelodau gweithredol newydd yn dod i mewn, felly mae trefniadau arwain newydd ar waith o fewn y bwrdd iechyd: cyfarwyddwr gweithredol nyrsio newydd, cyfarwyddwr meddygol newydd, yn ogystal â phrif swyddog gweithredol newydd. Felly, mae’n bwysig deall bod yr arweinyddiaeth wedi symud ymlaen o’r adeg pan wnaed y sefydliad yn destun mesurau arbennig. I mi, rhaid i hyn bob amser ymwneud â’r cwestiwn: a ydym yn gweld cynnydd yn cael ei wneud? A ydym yn cael sicrwydd annibynnol gan reoleiddwyr fod cynnydd gwirioneddol yn cael ei wneud, a beth yw’r heriau parhaus y mae angen i ni eu gweld yn cael eu datrys ym mwrdd iechyd Betsi Cadwaladr? Oherwydd hynny, i mi, yw’r peth pwysicaf, gan fy mod am i bobl sy’n byw yng ngogledd Cymru dderbyn gwasanaeth iechyd o’r un ansawdd uchel ag y credaf fod pob dinesydd yn unrhyw ran o Gymru yn ei haeddu.

The health board website states that:

‘The Board was made aware by families of serious concerns about the care of patients in December 2013.

‘Immediate action was taken to close the ward and patients…transferred to alternative care.’

However, I wrote to the chief executive of the then north Wales NHS trust in April 2009 on behalf of a constituent, stating that the treatment received by her husband in the unit nearly killed him, that three other patients, admitted around the same time as her husband, had similar experiences, and she was now worried about the treatment that others may receive in the unit. Her husband had Alzheimer’s disease and terminal cancer. Through that, I was copied on the complaint of another patient who had vascular dementia, which included distressing ‘before’ and ‘after’ photographs. The chief executive responded that it was being treated as a formal complaint and that she’d copied my e-mail to the chief of staff for mental health and learning disabilities. How, therefore, will you ensure that this inquiry not only considers the impact on the patients and the families, but considers why matters were raised with them several years—four and a half years—before they acknowledged that they were made aware of this, having been raised with them at the highest level?

Dywed gwefan y bwrdd iechyd:

Cafodd y Bwrdd wybod gan deuluoedd am bryderon difrifol ynglŷn â gofal cleifion ym mis Rhagfyr 2013.

Cymerwyd camau ar unwaith i gau’r ward a chafodd cleifion eu trosglwyddo i ofal amgen.

Fodd bynnag, ysgrifennais at brif weithredwr ymddiriedolaeth GIG gogledd Cymru ym mis Ebrill 2009 ar ran etholwr, gan ddweud bod y driniaeth a gafodd ei gŵr yn yr uned bron â’i ladd, fod tri chlaf arall a dderbyniwyd i’r uned oddeutu’r un adeg â’i gŵr wedi cael profiadau tebyg, a’i bod yn poeni bellach ynglŷn â’r driniaeth y gallai eraill ei chael yn yr uned. Roedd ei gŵr yn dioddef o glefyd Alzheimer a chanser terfynol. Drwy hynny, cefais gopi o gŵyn claf arall â dementia fasgwlaidd, a oedd yn cynnwys lluniau ‘cyn’ ac ‘ar ôl’ torcalonnus. Ymatebodd y prif weithredwr drwy ddweud eu bod yn ei hystyried yn gŵyn ffurfiol, a’i bod wedi anfon fy e-bost at y pennaeth staff ar gyfer iechyd meddwl ac anableddau dysgu. Sut, felly, y byddwch yn sicrhau bod yr ymchwiliad hwn nid yn unig yn ystyried yr effaith ar y cleifion a’r teuluoedd, ond yn ystyried pam fod materion wedi’u dwyn i’w sylw sawl blwyddyn—bedair blynedd a hanner—cyn iddynt gydnabod eu bod wedi cael gwybod am hyn, ar ôl iddynt gael eu dwyn i’w sylw ar y lefel uchaf?

I think it’s difficult to understand how the matters raised directly relate to the investigation that’s being undertaken. You raise matters that are historic, going back to 2009, as you indicate, and others. I’m not aware of how the independent HASCAS investigation has actually resolved all those issues, because that’s the whole point about being independent. It’s not for me to set parameters on the timescales for them to look at or to understand; it is for me, though, to understand that there is a properly rigorous, robust and independent investigation into what took place in the care provided around Tawel Fan, the lessons to be learnt from that particular part of the service, but also if there are wider lessons to learn about the future of the service not just in north Wales but beyond. So, if the Member believes that there are matters that he wishes to draw to the attention of the independent group overseeing the HASCAS investigation, then I think that’s perfectly proper for him to do. It must be for them to undertake that investigation as they see fit, rather than me deciding for them what they must do, because that then means it is not an independent investigation and inquiry. I think it’s really important to protect the independence, the robustness, the high quality and searching level of detail that that inquiry is undertaking. I look forward to receiving the outcome of that investigation report. We’ll then need to understand what we can do collectively to move healthcare in north Wales forward afterwards.

Rwy’n credu ei bod yn anodd deall sut y mae’r materion a godwyd yn ymwneud yn uniongyrchol â’r ymchwiliad sy’n cael ei gynnal. Rydych yn codi materion hanesyddol, sy’n mynd yn ôl i 2009, fel rydych yn ei nodi, ac eraill. Nid wyf yn ymwybodol o sut y mae ymchwiliad annibynnol y Gwasanaeth Cynghori ar Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol wedi datrys yr holl faterion hynny mewn gwirionedd, oherwydd dyna’r holl bwynt am fod yn annibynnol. Nid fy lle i yw gosod paramedrau ar yr amserlenni er mwyn iddynt edrych arnynt neu eu deall; fy lle i, fodd bynnag, yw deall bod ymchwiliad trwyadl, cadarn ac annibynnol yn cael ei gynnal i’r hyn a ddigwyddodd mewn perthynas â’r gofal a ddarparwyd ar ward Tawel Fan, y gwersi sydd i’w dysgu o’r rhan benodol honno o’r gwasanaeth, ond hefyd a oes gwersi ehangach i’w dysgu am ddyfodol y gwasanaeth, nid yn unig yng ngogledd Cymru ond y tu hwnt. Felly, os yw’r Aelod o’r farn fod yna faterion y mae’n dymuno eu dwyn i sylw’r grŵp annibynnol sy’n goruchwylio ymchwiliad y Gwasanaeth Cynghori ar Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol, yna rwy’n credu ei bod yn gwbl briodol iddo wneud hynny. Rhaid iddynt hwy gynnal yr ymchwiliad fel y gwelant yn dda, yn hytrach na fy mod i’n penderfynu drostynt beth sy’n rhaid iddynt ei wneud, oherwydd bydd hynny’n golygu wedyn nad yw’n ymchwiliad ac yn ymholiad annibynnol. Credaf ei bod yn wirioneddol bwysig amddiffyn yr annibyniaeth, y cadernid, yr ansawdd uchel a’r lefel drylwyr o fanylder sydd i’r ymchwiliad. Edrychaf ymlaen at gael canlyniad yr adroddiad ar yr ymchwiliad hwnnw. Yna, bydd angen i ni ddeall yr hyn y gallwn ei wneud ar y cyd i ddatblygu gofal iechyd yng ngogledd Cymru wedyn.

Any investigation needs to be undertaken thoroughly and fairly, of course, but how will the Cabinet Secretary ensure that the investigation is conducted in a timely manner? How will the Cabinet Secretary make sure that any findings are not simply written off by the stock line that seems to be used when a public body is found to be failing our people, which is ‘lessons will be learned’? Finally, will the Cabinet Secretary ensure that the results of this investigation are brought back to the full Assembly, not just the scrutiny committee, for a debate on next steps?

Mae angen i unrhyw ymchwiliad gael ei gynnal yn drylwyr ac yn deg, wrth gwrs, ond sut y bydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn sicrhau bod yr ymchwiliad yn cael ei gynnal mewn modd amserol? Sut y bydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn sicrhau nad yw unrhyw ganfyddiadau yn cael eu diystyru’n syml gan yr ystrydeb sydd i’w gweld yn cael ei defnyddio pan welir bod corff cyhoeddus yn gwneud cam â’n pobl, sef ‘y bydd gwersi’n cael eu dysgu’? Yn olaf, a fydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn sicrhau bod canlyniadau’r ymchwiliad hwn yn cael eu dwyn yn ôl i’r Cynulliad llawn, nid y pwyllgor craffu’n unig, ar gyfer dadl ar y camau nesaf?

I’m happy to respond to the middle point first in terms of what will happen. In terms of what will happen, we need to see what the report says first, to then understand what an appropriate response is, what response the health board should undertake and are there points for the Government to respond to as well.

I’m robustly confident there will be questions as a result of the report when it’s provided, and, of course, we’ll need to consider with the leader of the house about how Government business is used in terms of responding to that report when it’s provided and having a proper response that actually informs rather than simply adds more heat to public debate around this matter. It’s really important we take a step forward rather than have an exercise in launching more criticism onto individuals who are not here, but actually look at what happens, for the people who need the service at the highest level of quality within north Wales.

Finally, o the point about the timely manner of providing this report, for me, the most important point is that it is a robust and independent report. I personally would have much preferred it if this report was available several months ago. It would be much more convenient for me if that were the case. I cannot—well, I could, but I will not interfere with the timescale for this report. Otherwise, as I said earlier, it is no longer an independent report. It must not be a report that is done for the convenience of a Government politician. It must be a report that carries real independence, real rigour and real robustness with it. That means, unfortunately, it’s taken longer than any one of us in this room or the families affected would have wanted it to have done. But, the robustness and the independence of that report should not be compromised, and I will not do that.

Rwy’n hapus i ymateb i’r pwynt canol yn gyntaf o ran yr hyn a fydd yn digwydd. O ran yr hyn a fydd yn digwydd, mae angen i ni weld beth y mae’r adroddiad yn ei ddweud yn gyntaf, er mwyn deall pa ymateb sy’n briodol wedyn, pa ymateb y dylai’r bwrdd iechyd ei roi a gweld a oes pwyntiau i’r Llywodraeth ymateb iddynt hefyd.

Rwy’n gadarn hyderus y bydd cwestiynau o ganlyniad i’r adroddiad pan fydd yn cael ei ddarparu, ac wrth gwrs, bydd angen i ni ystyried gydag arweinydd y tŷ sut y mae busnes y Llywodraeth yn cael ei ddefnyddio o ran ymateb i’r adroddiad hwnnw pan fydd yn cael ei ddarparu a chael ymateb priodol sydd, mewn gwirionedd, yn hysbysu yn hytrach na dim ond ychwanegu mwy o wres i’r ddadl gyhoeddus ar y mater hwn. Mae’n bwysig iawn ein bod yn cymryd cam ymlaen yn hytrach na chael ymarfer i bentyrru beirniadaeth ar unigolion nad ydynt yma, a’n bod yn edrych ar yr hyn sy’n digwydd mewn gwirionedd ar gyfer y bobl sydd angen gwasanaeth o’r ansawdd uchaf yng ngogledd Cymru.

Yn olaf, ar y pwynt ynglŷn â’r modd amserol o ddarparu’r adroddiad hwn, i mi, y pwynt pwysicaf yw ei fod yn adroddiad cadarn ac annibynnol. Yn bersonol, byddai wedi bod yn well o lawer gennyf pe bai’r adroddiad hwn ar gael sawl mis yn ôl. Byddai’n llawer mwy cyfleus i mi pe bai hynny’n wir. Ni allaf—wel, fe allwn, ond ni fyddaf yn ymyrryd â’r amserlen ar gyfer yr adroddiad hwn. Fel arall, fel y dywedais yn gynharach, nid yw’n adroddiad annibynnol mwyach. Mae’n rhaid iddo beidio â bod yn adroddiad sy’n cael ei wneud er hwylustod gwleidydd Llywodraeth. Mae’n rhaid iddo fod yn adroddiad gydag annibyniaeth go iawn, trylwyredd go iawn a chadernid go iawn. Mae hynny’n golygu, yn anffodus, ei fod wedi cymryd mwy o amser nag y byddai unrhyw un ohonom yn yr ystafell hon neu’r teuluoedd yr effeithiwyd arnynt wedi bod eisiau iddo ei gymryd. Ond ni ddylid peryglu cadernid ac annibyniaeth yr adroddiad, ac ni fyddaf yn gwneud hynny.

4. 4. Datganiadau 90 Eiliad
4. 4. 90-second Statements
5. 5. Dadl ar Ymchwiliad y Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg i'r Grant Gwella Addysg: Plant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, a Phlant o Leiafrifoedd Ethnig
5. 5. Debate on the Children, Young People and Education Committee's Inquiry into the Education Improvement Grant: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and Minority Ethnic Children

Therefore, we move to item 5 on the agenda, which is a debate on the Children, Young People and Education Committee’s inquiry into the education improvement grant: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and minority ethnic children. I call on Lynne Neagle to move the motion.

Felly, symudwn at eitem 5 ar yr agenda, sef dadl ar ymchwiliad y Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg i’r Grant Gwella Addysg: Plant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, a phlant o leiafrifoedd ethnig. Galwaf ar Lynne Neagle i gynnig y cynnig.

Cynnig NDM6296 Lynne Neagle

Cynnig bod Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru:

Yn nodi adroddiad y Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg ar yr ymchwiliad i'r Grant Gwella Addysg: Plant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, a phlant o leiafrifoedd ethnig a osodwyd yn y Swyddfa Gyflwyno ar 21 Chwefror 2017.

Motion NDM6296 Lynne Neagle

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

Notes the Children, Young People and Education Committee Report on the Inquiry into the Education Improvement Grant: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller, and Minority Ethnic Children which was laid in the Table Office on 21 February 2017.

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer. As I outlined in my statement to the Chamber on 25 January, the Children, Young People and Education Committee is engaging with stakeholders on what the main issues that we should be looking at are, and we are designing our work programme accordingly. The report we are debating today is another example of the committee undertaking an inquiry identified in our consultation on stakeholder priorities last summer.

Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children have the lowest rates of attainment of any ethnic group in Wales. Just 16 per cent achieved the level 2 threshold inclusive—i.e. five or more GCSEs at grades A* to C including maths and English or Welsh—between 2013 and 2015. Statistics published during the committee’s inquiry showed some welcome improvement, to 24 per cent between 2014 and 2016, although the gap with all pupils is still too wide at 35 percentage points. The gap with pupils eligible for free school meals, themselves a disadvantaged group, is 7 percentage points.

Black and minority ethnic learners are less of a homogenous group and the attainment picture varies considerably. Many minority groups outperform their peers, but some groups, such as black Caribbean, black African and mixed race Caribbean, attain lower than the average. These groups of learners were previously supported under two ring-fenced grants paid to local authorities—the Gypsy and Traveller children grant and the minority ethnic achievement grant. These were two of 11 ring-fenced grants that were amalgamated into a new education improvement grant, introduced in financial year 2015-16.

The EIG, as it is known, is administered by the four regional consortia. The Welsh Government’s intention at the time was to be welcomed. It wanted to create greater flexibility and realise administrative savings. However, there is clear concern about whether there is now the same level of support for Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and minority ethnic learners, and particular concerns about how the impact of the funding change is being monitored and evaluated.

A lack of proper monitoring and evaluation was the biggest concern that came up repeatedly through the evidence the committee received. The previous grants were both subject to robust monitoring and accountability systems. These have been lost with the introduction of the EIG. The Cabinet Secretary has placed considerable emphasis on the role of the regional consortia and local authorities themselves in monitoring and evaluating impact. However, the committee saw little evidence that this is happening. In fact, we were disappointed with the evidence offered by the consortia on how they monitor use and impact of the EIG, something the Cabinet Secretary acknowledged herself in oral evidence. I will come back to monitoring and evaluation shortly.

I very much welcome the positive approach the Cabinet Secretary has taken to our inquiry in her response to our 14 recommendations. I am really pleased she accepted all of our recommendations, either in full or in principle, except one, which called for an updated impact assessment on the decision to amalgamate the grants. I am disappointed that this recommendation has been rejected, as there was considerable criticism levelled at the robustness of the original impact assessment.

What concerns me and the committee, Llywydd, is the fact that no clear assessment can be made of whether the move to a single grant has had any positive or negative impact. The total value of the EIG in 2017-18 is around 13 per cent less than the last year of ring-fenced grants in 2014-15. We just don't know exactly how much of the EIG is spent on Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and minority ethnic children because expenditure is no longer tracked or monitored in this way. Our overarching recommendation is, therefore, that the Welsh Government keeps under review the funding model it uses to support these learners and reports back before the end of this Assembly.

In the meantime, the committee has recommended a number of improvements to how the EIG is monitored and evaluated. We believe the Welsh Government should issue more detailed guidance on how the grant can be used to benefit Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and minority ethnic learners beyond that which exists at present, which is not much more than high-level objectives in reference to the ‘Qualified for life’ improvement plan.

We are concerned that there has not been enough progress on producing an outcomes framework, which was intended to inform how the EIG is spent, and we urge the Welsh Government to get a much firmer grip on monitoring and evaluation to ensure that consortia and local authorities know exactly what is expected.

I am pleased that the Cabinet Secretary has committed to putting in place a more robust outcomes framework in 2017-18. I also welcome that the Welsh Government has taken on board our recommendation for Estyn to undertake a thematic review of this subject. However, the committee does have reservations about the Welsh Government’s emphasis on meeting the needs of specific groups of learners through an all-pupil approach to school improvement. As witnesses told us, inclusion doesn't mean treating everyone the same. You have to recognise that people are different and have different needs.

We believe the Welsh Government must fundamentally strengthen its focus and target funding more specifically on Gypsy, Roma and Traveller learners and ethnic groups that have lower-than-average attainment. We have made two recommendations on this, and expect to see more reference to these groups in the updated ‘Qualified for life’ plan and the ‘Rewriting the future’ strategy that is due to be published soon. In closing, Llywydd, I want to emphasise to Members that this is not an issue that can be addressed by a one-size-fits-all approach to educational improvement. Support and interventions must be tailored to the learner if we are to support every child and young person in achieving their full potential. Thank you.

Diolch, Ddirprwy Lywydd. Fel yr amlinellais yn fy natganiad i’r Siambr ar 25 Ionawr, mae’r Pwyllgor Plant, Pobl Ifanc ac Addysg yn ymgysylltu â rhanddeiliaid ar beth yw’r prif faterion y dylem fod yn edrych arnynt, ac rydym yn cynllunio ein rhaglen waith yn unol â hynny. Mae’r adroddiad rydym yn ei drafod heddiw yn enghraifft arall o’r pwyllgor yn cynnal ymchwiliad a nodwyd yn ein hymgynghoriad ar flaenoriaethau rhanddeiliaid yr haf diwethaf.

Plant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr sydd â’r cyfraddau cyrhaeddiad isaf o unrhyw grŵp ethnig yng Nghymru. Ni lwyddodd ond 16 y cant ohonynt yn unig i gyrraedd trothwy cynwysedig lefel 2—h.y. pump neu ragor o bynciau TGAU gradd A* i C gan gynnwys Mathemateg a Saesneg neu Gymraeg—rhwng 2013 a 2015. Mae’r ystadegau a gyhoeddwyd yn ystod ymchwiliad y pwyllgor yn dangos rhywfaint o welliant sydd i’w groesawu, i 24 y cant rhwng 2014 a 2016, er bod y bwlch rhyngddynt a phob disgybl yn dal yn rhy fawr ar 35 pwynt canran. Mae’r bwlch rhyngddynt a disgyblion sy’n gymwys i gael prydau ysgol am ddim, sydd eu hunain yn grŵp difreintiedig, yn 7 pwynt canran.

Mae dysgwyr duon a lleiafrifoedd ethnig yn grŵp llai unffurf ac mae’r darlun cyrhaeddiad yn amrywio’n sylweddol. Mae llawer o grwpiau lleiafrifol yn perfformio’n well na’u cyfoedion, ond mae cyrhaeddiad rhai grwpiau, megis grwpiau Caribïaidd du, Affricanaidd du a Charibïaidd cymysg yn is na’r cyfartaledd. Câi’r grwpiau hyn o ddysgwyr eu cefnogi’n flaenorol o dan ddau grant wedi’u clustnodi a delid i awdurdodau lleol—y grant plant Sipsiwn a phlant Teithwyr a’r grant cyflawniad lleiafrifoedd ethnig. Dau o 11 o grantiau wedi’u clustnodi oedd y rhain a gafodd eu cyfuno’n grant gwella addysg newydd a gyflwynwyd yn ystod blwyddyn ariannol 2015-16.

Caiff y grant gwella addysg, fel y’i gelwir, ei weinyddu gan y pedwar consortiwm rhanbarthol. Roedd bwriad Llywodraeth Cymru ar y pryd yn un i’w groesawu. Roedd yn awyddus i greu mwy o hyblygrwydd a chreu arbedion gweinyddol. Fodd bynnag, ceir pryder clir pa un a oes yr un lefel o gefnogaeth erbyn hyn ar gyfer dysgwyr sy’n Sipsiwn, Roma, Teithwyr a dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig, a phryderon penodol ynglŷn â sut y caiff effaith y newid yn y cyllid ei monitro a’i gwerthuso.

Diffyg monitro a gwerthuso priodol oedd y pryder mwyaf a fynegwyd dro ar ôl tro yn y dystiolaeth a gyflwynwyd i’r pwyllgor. Roedd y grantiau blaenorol yn ddarostyngedig i systemau monitro ac atebolrwydd cadarn. Mae’r rhain wedi cael eu colli gyda dyfodiad y grant gwella addysg. Mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi rhoi cryn bwyslais ar rôl y consortia rhanbarthol ac awdurdodau lleol eu hunain yn monitro a gwerthuso effaith. Fodd bynnag, ni welodd y pwyllgor lawer o dystiolaeth fod hyn yn digwydd. Yn wir, roeddem yn siomedig gyda’r dystiolaeth a gynigiwyd gan y consortia ar sut y maent yn monitro defnydd ac effaith y grant gwella addysg, rhywbeth a gafodd ei gydnabod gan Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ei hun mewn tystiolaeth lafar. Dof yn ôl at fonitro a gwerthuso yn y man.

Croesawaf yn fawr yr agwedd gadarnhaol sydd gan Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet tuag at ein hymchwiliad yn ei hymateb i’n 14 argymhelliad. Rwy’n hynod o falch ei bod wedi derbyn pob un o’n hargymhellion, naill ai’n llawn neu mewn egwyddor, ac eithrio un, a oedd yn galw am asesiad effaith wedi’i ddiweddaru o’r penderfyniad i gyfuno’r grantiau. Rwy’n siomedig fod yr argymhelliad hwn wedi’i wrthod, gan fod cryn feirniadaeth wedi bod o gadernid yr asesiad effaith gwreiddiol.

Yr hyn sy’n fy mhoeni i a’r pwyllgor, Llywydd, yw’r ffaith na ellir gwneud unrhyw asesiad clir pa un a yw’r newid i un grant wedi cael unrhyw effaith gadarnhaol neu negyddol. Mae cyfanswm gwerth y grant gwella addysg yn 2017-18 oddeutu 13 y cant yn llai na’r flwyddyn ddiwethaf o grantiau wedi’u clustnodi yn 2014-15. Nid ydym yn gwybod yn union faint o’r grant gwella addysg sy’n cael ei wario ar blant Sipsiwn, Roma, Teithwyr a phlant o leiafrifoedd ethnig gan nad yw gwariant yn cael ei olrhain neu ei fonitro yn y modd hwn mwyach. Ein hargymhelliad cyffredinol, felly, yw y dylai Llywodraeth Cymru barhau i adolygu’r model cyllido y mae’n ei ddefnyddio i gefnogi’r dysgwyr hyn ac adrodd yn ôl cyn diwedd y Cynulliad hwn.

Yn y cyfamser, mae’r pwyllgor wedi argymell nifer o welliannau i’r ffordd y mae’r grant gwella addysg yn cael ei fonitro a’i werthuso. Credwn y dylai Llywodraeth Cymru gyhoeddi canllawiau manylach ar sut y gellir defnyddio’r grant er budd dysgwyr sy’n Sipsiwn, Roma, Teithwyr a dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig y tu hwnt i’r hyn sy’n bodoli ar hyn o bryd, ac nid ydynt yn llawer mwy nag amcanion lefel uchel sy’n cyfeirio at y cynllun gwella ‘Cymwys am oes’.

Rydym yn pryderu na chafwyd digon o gynnydd ar gynhyrchu fframwaith canlyniadau y bwriadwyd iddo lywio’r modd y caiff y grant gwella addysg ei wario, ac rydym yn annog Llywodraeth Cymru i gael gafael llawer cadarnach ar fonitro a gwerthuso er mwyn sicrhau bod consortia ac awdurdodau lleol yn gwybod yn union beth a ddisgwylir.

Rwy’n falch bod Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi ymrwymo i sefydlu fframwaith canlyniadau mwy cadarn yn 2017-18. Rwyf hefyd yn croesawu’r ffaith fod Llywodraeth Cymru wedi derbyn ein hargymhelliad y dylai Estyn gynnal adolygiad thematig o’r pwnc hwn. Fodd bynnag, mae gan y pwyllgor amheuon ynglŷn â phwyslais Llywodraeth Cymru ar ddiwallu anghenion grwpiau penodol o ddysgwyr drwy fabwysiadu ymagwedd sy’n canolbwyntio ar bob disgybl tuag at wella ysgolion. Fel y mae tystion wedi’i ddweud wrthym, nid yw cynhwysiant yn golygu trin pawb yr un fath. Rhaid i chi gydnabod bod pobl yn wahanol a bod ganddynt wahanol anghenion.

Credwn fod yn rhaid i Lywodraeth Cymru gryfhau ei ffocws yn sylfaenol a thargedu cyllid yn fwy penodol ar ddysgwyr Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr a grwpiau ethnig sydd â chyrhaeddiad is na’r cyfartaledd. Rydym wedi gwneud dau argymhelliad ar hyn, ac yn disgwyl gweld mwy o gyfeirio at y grwpiau hyn yn y diweddariad o’r cynllun ‘Cymwys am oes’ ac yn y strategaeth ‘Ailysgrifennu’r dyfodol’ sydd i fod i gael ei chyhoeddi cyn bo hir. I gloi, Llywydd, hoffwn bwysleisio i’r Aelodau nad yw hwn yn fater y gellir mynd i’r afael ag ef drwy ymagwedd ‘un ateb sy’n addas i bawb’ tuag at welliant addysgol. Mae’n rhaid i gymorth ac ymyriadau gael eu teilwra ar gyfer y dysgwr os ydym am helpu pob plentyn a pherson ifanc i gyflawni eu potensial llawn. Diolch.

Can I thank the Chair for her opening speech and commend her for the way in which she led this inquiry, and also thank on the record the clerks and the witnesses who provided evidence to the committee? I think it was important that we undertook this piece of work, and that's why the committee agreed that this should be an early priority in terms of the committee's work programme. I know all too well, and I've often criticised, the large number of grants that have been available, particularly when I was Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, and used by the Government in order to direct and deliver on their policy objectives. So, I can completely understand why the Government sought to amalgamate these grants in order to reduce the administrative burden on local education authorities and, indeed, on the Welsh Government in terms of taking things forward. But I am concerned that there’s been a lack of follow-up in terms of the Welsh Government trying to determine whether the outcomes that it wanted to achiever are still actually being delivered on the ground. That’s why we undertook this piece of work as a committee, and I was very happy to support it.

We know that educational attainment, particularly for Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, are not as good as they should be. They have improved recently, which is a positive thing, but there’s still this huge attainment gap with their peers in schools, and that’s not good enough. We’ve got to address that. And that’s the purpose of part of this grant, as is the need to close the gap in terms of some of the different ethnic minority groups and the educational attainment and achievement of them too.

I think what really struck me was the fact that we have a patchwork of provision in Wales that is very inconsistent. I was very taken with some of the evidence that we received from Gwent, where, quite clearly, they have pretty much a gold standard in terms of what they’re able to provide in terms of support particularly for those from ethnic minorities who are moving into the locality. And I was really taken with the fact that that is adding significant value and supporting individual schools, particularly where they have no expertise available to them. But the situation was very different in other parts of Wales, and I think it’s fair to say that some of the regional consortia just do not have a grip on what’s going on in their areas and that this has been a very low priority for them. That was very concerning indeed.

I was also particularly concerned about the evidence that we received from Estyn. Estyn were very helpful in providing evidence to us; they’ve obviously done some work in the past, particularly on the Gypsy/Traveller community and their attainment levels. But what was abundantly clear was that they had produced a couple of reports with some clear recommendations in them but they had not followed those reports up. Now, frankly, for the education inspectorate not to have followed up their recommendations is completely unacceptable. They said that it was a resource issue and that’s why they hadn’t followed it up, but, frankly, I think there can be no excuse for the inspectorate not taking up this issue more vigorously both with the Welsh Government and local education authorities. So, I’d be grateful if the Cabinet Secretary could just outline what role she expects Estyn to play in the future in terms of making sure that some of the policy direction of the Government is actually being delivered on the ground and that they’re taking their responsibility as an inspectorate to do just that.

Some of the other things that are referenced in the report are the lack of support for young people post 16 who want to continue with their education. We know that having older peers is often a very important factor in supporting young people in taking an interest in their learning, and, again, particularly Gypsy/Traveller community-background young people are not going on to further education or higher education, and yet there’s no specific support for them at the moment. I’d be very interested, Cabinet Secretary—and I know I raised this during the committee proceedings with you—but I’d be very interested to know whether there’s anything that can be done within the review of student support that is under way at the moment to specifically target these groups in order to encourage active participation in post-16 learning by young people from black backgrounds in particular, Afro-Caribbean backgrounds, and the Gypsy/Traveller communities—those ones that fall well behind in terms of some of these particular outcomes.

And I think all the recommendations in the report, if they’re taken as a whole, will actually deliver some sea change in improvement in this area in the future, and no doubt the committee will want to continue to look at this in terms of outcomes in the future to see whether our recommendations have been implemented in full. I acknowledge that one of them has been resisted, as it were, but I know that the Minister’s heart is in absolutely the right place in terms of wanting to deliver some sea change. So, I would be grateful if particularly you could talk about the post-16 issue and the role of Estyn in response to the committee’s report today. Thank you.

A gaf fi ddiolch i’r Cadeirydd am ei haraith agoriadol a’i chanmol am y ffordd y mae hi wedi arwain yr ymchwiliad hwn, a chofnodi fy niolch hefyd i’r clercod a’r tystion a roddodd dystiolaeth i’r pwyllgor? Rwy’n credu ei bod yn bwysig ein bod wedi ymgymryd â’r gwaith hwn, a dyna pam y cytunodd y pwyllgor y dylai fod yn flaenoriaeth gynnar o ran rhaglen waith y pwyllgor. Rwy’n ymwybodol iawn, ac rwy’n aml wedi beirniadu’r nifer fawr o grantiau sydd wedi bod ar gael, yn enwedig pan oeddwn yn Gadeirydd ar y Pwyllgor Cyfrifon Cyhoeddus, ac sydd wedi cael eu defnyddio gan y Llywodraeth er mwyn cyfarwyddo a chyflawni eu hamcanion polisi. Felly, gallaf ddeall yn iawn pam y ceisiodd y Llywodraeth gyfuno’r grantiau hyn er mwyn lleihau’r baich gweinyddol ar awdurdodau addysg lleol, ac ar Lywodraeth Cymru yn wir o ran bwrw ymlaen â phethau. Ond rwy’n pryderu ynglŷn â diffyg dilyniant wrth i Lywodraeth Cymru geisio penderfynu a yw’r canlyniadau yr oedd yn awyddus i’w cyflawni yn dal i gael eu gwireddu ar lawr gwlad mewn gwirionedd. Dyna pam y gwnaethom y gwaith hwn fel pwyllgor, ac roeddwn yn hapus iawn i’w gefnogi.

Gwyddom nad yw cyrhaeddiad addysgol, yn enwedig mewn cymunedau Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, mor dda ag y dylai fod. Mae wedi gwella’n ddiweddar, sy’n beth cadarnhaol, ond ceir bwlch cyrhaeddiad anferth rhyngddynt a’u cyfoedion mewn ysgolion o hyd, ac nid yw hynny’n ddigon da. Mae’n rhaid i ni fynd i’r afael â hynny. A dyna yw diben rhan o’r grant hwn, ynghyd â’r angen i gau’r bwlch i rai o’r gwahanol grwpiau lleiafrifoedd ethnig a’u cyrhaeddiad addysgol a’u cyflawniad hwy hefyd.

Rwy’n credu mai’r hyn a’m synnodd yn fawr oedd y ffaith fod gennym ddarpariaeth dameidiog yng Nghymru sy’n anghyson iawn. Fe’m calonogwyd yn fawr gan rywfaint o’r dystiolaeth a gawsom o Went, lle y mae’n eithaf amlwg fod ganddynt safon aur i bob pwrpas o ran y gefnogaeth y gallant ei darparu yn enwedig ar gyfer y rhai o leiafrifoedd ethnig sy’n symud i mewn i’r ardal. Ac fe’m calonogwyd yn fawr gan y ffaith fod hynny’n ychwanegu gwerth sylweddol ac yn cefnogi ysgolion unigol, yn enwedig lle nad oes ganddynt arbenigedd ar gael iddynt. Ond roedd y sefyllfa’n wahanol iawn mewn rhannau eraill o Gymru, ac rwy’n credu ei bod yn deg dweud nad yw rhai o’r consortia rhanbarthol yn gwybod yn iawn beth sy’n digwydd yn eu hardaloedd ac mai blaenoriaeth isel iawn a roddwyd ganddynt i hyn. Roedd hynny’n peri pryder mawr yn wir.

Roeddwn yn arbennig o bryderus ynglŷn â’r dystiolaeth a gawsom gan Estyn hefyd. Roedd Estyn yn ddefnyddiol iawn o ran darparu tystiolaeth i ni; maent yn amlwg wedi gwneud gwaith yn y gorffennol, yn enwedig ar gymuned y Sipsiwn/Teithwyr a’u lefelau cyrhaeddiad. Ond roedd yn gwbl amlwg eu bod wedi cynhyrchu un neu ddau o adroddiadau gydag argymhellion clir ynddynt, ond nad oeddent wedi gwneud gwaith dilynol ar yr adroddiadau hynny. Nawr, a bod yn onest, mae’n gwbl annerbyniol nad yw’r arolygiaeth addysg wedi gwneud gwaith dilynol ar eu hargymhellion. Roeddent yn dweud mai mater o adnoddau ydoedd ac mai dyna pam na wnaethant waith dilynol arno, ond a dweud y gwir, credaf nad oes esgus dros fethiant yr arolygiaeth i fynd ar drywydd y mater yn fwy egnïol gyda Llywodraeth Cymru ac awdurdodau addysg lleol. Felly, byddwn yn ddiolchgar pe gallai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet amlinellu pa rôl y mae’n disgwyl i Estyn ei chwarae yn y dyfodol o ran sicrhau bod peth o gyfeiriad polisi’r Llywodraeth yn cael ei gyflwyno ar lawr gwlad mewn gwirionedd a’u bod yn ysgwyddo’u cyfrifoldeb fel arolygiaeth i wneud yn union hynny. 

Un o’r pethau eraill y cyfeirir ato yn yr adroddiad yw’r diffyg cefnogaeth i bobl ifanc dros 16 sydd am barhau â’u haddysg. Gwyddom fod cael cymheiriaid hŷn yn aml yn ffactor pwysig iawn wrth gynorthwyo pobl ifanc i ymddiddori yn eu haddysg, ac unwaith eto, nid yw pobl ifanc o gefndiroedd cymunedau Sipsiwn/Teithwyr yn enwedig yn camu ymlaen at addysg bellach neu addysg uwch, ac eto nid oes unrhyw gymorth penodol ar eu cyfer ar hyn o bryd. Byddai gennyf ddiddordeb mawr, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet—a gwn fy mod wedi crybwyll hyn wrthych yn ystod trafodion y pwyllgor—ond byddai gennyf ddiddordeb mawr mewn gwybod a oes unrhyw beth y gellir ei wneud o fewn yr adolygiad o gymorth i fyfyrwyr sydd ar y gweill ar hyn o bryd i dargedu’r grwpiau hyn yn benodol er mwyn annog cyfranogiad gweithgar mewn addysg ôl-16 gan bobl ifanc o gefndiroedd du yn benodol, cefndiroedd Affro-Caribïaidd, a’r cymunedau Sipsiwn/Teithwyr—y rhai sydd ymhell ar ei hôl hi o ran rhai o’r canlyniadau penodol hyn.

Ac rwy’n credu y bydd yr holl argymhellion yn yr adroddiad, os cânt eu hystyried gyda’i gilydd, yn cyflawni newid mawr o ran gwella’r maes hwn yn y dyfodol, ac mae’n siŵr y bydd y pwyllgor yn awyddus i barhau i edrych arno mewn perthynas â chanlyniadau yn y dyfodol i weld a yw ein hargymhellion wedi cael eu rhoi ar waith yn llawn. Rwy’n cydnabod bod un ohonynt wedi cael ei wrthwynebu, fel petai, ond gwn fod calon y Gweinidog yn y lle cywir o ran ei hawydd i sicrhau newid go iawn. Felly, byddwn yn ddiolchgar pe baech yn siarad yn benodol am y mater ôl-16 a rôl Estyn mewn ymateb i adroddiad y pwyllgor heddiw. Diolch.

Thank you very much, Deputy Presiding Officer, for calling me to speak in this debate on the impact on Gypsy, Roma and Traveller and minority ethnic children of merging former specialist grants into the education improvement grant. I am a member of the committee, so I’ve been able to take part in this inquiry. I’m going to concentrate my remarks on Gypsy, Roma and Traveller education, as I chair the cross-party group here in the Assembly.

Incidentally, we’ve just had a cross-party group here this lunchtime where we had children from the Gypsy and Traveller community from all over Wales, including Pembrokeshire and Torfaen, questioning the Cabinet Secretary for children and social cohesion, Carl Sargeant, about the availability of sites, about why Gypsies and Travellers are moved on and lots of very challenging questions. I think any of you who would’ve heard those young people doing those questions would know what huge potential those children have. It’s obviously our duty to ensure that they reach their potential.

At the time the grants were merged to become education improvement grants, members of that group did lobby strongly against this move, as I did myself, and my view, after taking part in this inquiry, is that it was the wrong way to go. I’m glad the Government has accepted the proposal that it should be reviewed, although of course, it has rejected, as the previous two speakers have said, the way this came about—by looking at the way the equality impact assessments were carried out—that has been rejected. Because there was strong evidence given to us that they didn’t feel that equality impact assessments had been properly carried out and we do learn a lot by looking back and seeing how things happen. So, I know that that has been rejected, but I wondered if the Cabinet Secretary could take that on board—that maybe a mistake was made here.

I was actually shocked by some of the evidence that was brought forward and I was mainly shocked by the lack of knowledge of what was actually happening in this particular area. Individuals who worked at the grass roots were passionate and they were knowledgeable about their work; people who had direct experience of working with the groups of children we were looking at—they felt very strongly that things were not going in the right direction. But the wider bodies I felt had much less knowledge and much less commitment to knowing what was actually happening. I know the wider bodies—I think the consortia, which the chair of the committee referred to—I know this is one tiny bit of their work, but if we’re going to be a fair society and if this Assembly is going to deliver for all, we have just got to look at this bit. I have to say, as I say, I was shocked that their knowledge was so poor.

It also appeared that there were no monitoring mechanisms in place to see what had been the effect of the change, and I know that the Government has said that it will agree to review the monitoring arrangements, but I think we absolutely need reassurance that this will be a meaningful review. What does it mean: ‘Yes, we will look at it again—look and see what the monitoring arrangements are like’? There has to be a specific commitment to see that that actually happens, so how will they review and how much of a priority will that be?

The last point I want to make, really, is that recommendation 14 proposes that the Travelling Ahead project, ‘Good Practice in Education: Peer Research Project’—that the Government should take forward its recommendation. The Government does agree in principle and does say it will publish it on certain websites. I really feel that there is evidence in this peer review that people need to know about. I’ve been looking at some of the recommendations in the peer review and some of these are very important. The children said, ‘We need a Gypsy teacher’. So, we need role models and we know that Gypsies do achieve very highly in many roles and the public don’t often know about that. And then, ‘I won’t be going to camp next year, because mum and dad say the school is too far away and they don’t want me to go on the bus on my own; Mum thinks I will see and learn bad things’. So, I think it’s important to understand the community background of the children that is as a result of care for the children.

And on the final three points, they said they have three top tips for schools on how to work with Gypsy and Traveller pupils. Number one is: ‘be aware of our culture’, and I think that’s got a long way to go, but that’s very important. ‘Be aware of our differences with the settled community’, and as our Chair said, one size does not fit all. We’ve got to be aware of the differences that are there. And thirdly: ‘flexible education and part-time attendance options for all pupils around Wales’, which, again, I think is something that perhaps the Cabinet Secretary could respond on.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Dirprwy Lywydd, am fy ngalw i siarad yn y ddadl hon ar effaith cyfuno grantiau arbenigol blaenorol i greu’r grant gwella addysg ar blant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr a phlant o leiafrifoedd ethnig. Rwy’n aelod o’r pwyllgor, felly rwyf wedi gallu cymryd rhan yn yr ymchwiliad hwn. Rwyf am ganolbwyntio fy sylwadau ar addysg Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, gan fy mod yn gadeirydd ar y grŵp trawsbleidiol yma yn y Cynulliad.

Gyda llaw, rydym newydd gael grŵp trawsbleidiol yma amser cinio heddiw, lle y cawsom blant o gymunedau Sipsiwn a Theithwyr o bob rhan o Gymru, gan gynnwys Sir Benfro a Thorfaen, yn holi Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros blant a chydlyniant cymdeithasol, Carl Sargeant, ynglŷn ag argaeledd safleoedd, ynglŷn â’r rheswm pam fod Sipsiwn a Theithwyr yn cael eu gorfodi i symud ymlaen a llawer o gwestiynau heriol iawn. Rwy’n credu y byddai unrhyw un ohonoch a fyddai wedi clywed y bobl ifanc yn gofyn y cwestiynau hyn yn gwybod am y potensial enfawr sydd gan y plant hynny. Mae’n amlwg yn ddyletswydd arnom i sicrhau eu bod yn cyrraedd eu potensial.

Pan gafodd y grantiau eu cyfuno i fod yn grantiau gwella addysg, fe lobïodd aelodau’r grŵp hwnnw’n gryf yn erbyn y newid, fel y gwnes i, a fy marn i, ar ôl cymryd rhan yn yr ymchwiliad, yw mai dyna’r ffordd anghywir o’i chwmpas hi. Rwy’n falch fod y Llywodraeth wedi derbyn yr argymhelliad y dylid ei adolygu, er ei fod wedi gwrthod, wrth gwrs, fel y dywedodd y ddau siaradwr blaenorol, y ffordd y digwyddodd hyn—drwy edrych ar y ffordd y cynhaliwyd yr asesiadau o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb—mae hynny wedi cael ei wrthod. Oherwydd cawsom dystiolaeth gref a ddangosai nad oeddent yn teimlo bod asesiadau o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb wedi cael eu cynnal yn briodol ac rydym yn dysgu llawer drwy edrych yn ôl a gweld sut y mae pethau’n digwydd. Felly, rwy’n gwybod fod hynny wedi cael ei wrthod, ond roeddwn yn meddwl tybed a allai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ystyried hynny—bod camgymeriad wedi cael ei wneud yma o bosibl.

Cefais fy synnu mewn gwirionedd gan beth o’r dystiolaeth a gyflwynwyd a chefais fy synnu’n bennaf gan y diffyg gwybodaeth ynglŷn â’r hyn oedd yn digwydd yn y maes hwn mewn gwirionedd. Roedd unigolion a oedd yn gweithio ar lawr gwlad yn angerddol ac yn wybodus ynglŷn â’u gwaith; pobl â phrofiad uniongyrchol o weithio gyda’r grwpiau o blant roeddem yn edrych arnynt—roeddent yn teimlo’n gryf iawn nad oedd pethau’n mynd i’r cyfeiriad cywir. Ond roeddwn yn teimlo bod y cyrff ehangach yn meddu ar lawer llai o wybodaeth ac yn llawer llai ymroddedig i wybod beth oedd yn digwydd mewn gwirionedd. Gwn fod y cyrff ehangach—rwy’n credu bod y consortia, y cyfeiriodd cadeirydd y pwyllgor atynt—gwn mai rhan fechan iawn o’u gwaith yw hyn, ond os ydym am fod yn gymdeithas deg, ac os yw’r Cynulliad hwn am gyflawni ar gyfer pawb, mae’n rhaid i ni edrych ar y rhan hon. Mae’n rhaid i mi ddweud, fel y dywedaf, fy mod wedi cael fy synnu bod eu gwybodaeth mor wael.

Roedd yn ymddangos hefyd nad oedd unrhyw systemau monitro ar waith i weld beth oedd effaith y newid wedi bod, a gwn fod y Llywodraeth wedi dweud y bydd yn cytuno i adolygu’r trefniadau monitro, ond rwy’n credu bod gwir angen sicrwydd arnom y bydd hwn yn adolygiad ystyrlon. Beth y mae’n ei olygu: ‘Byddwn, byddwn yn edrych arno eto—edrych a gweld sut y mae’r trefniadau monitro’n gweithio’? Mae’n rhaid cael ymrwymiad penodol i sicrhau bod hynny’n digwydd mewn gwirionedd, felly sut y byddant yn adolygu a faint o flaenoriaeth fydd i hynny?

Y pwynt olaf rwyf am ei wneud mewn gwirionedd yw bod argymhelliad 14 yn cynnig y dylai’r prosiect Teithio Ymlaen, ‘Arfer Da mewn Addysg: Prosiect Ymchwil Cymheiriaid’—y dylai’r Llywodraeth fwrw ymlaen â’i argymhelliad. Mae’r Llywodraeth yn cytuno mewn egwyddor ac yn dweud y bydd yn ei gyhoeddi ar wefannau penodol. Rwy’n teimlo o ddifrif fod yna dystiolaeth y mae angen i bobl wybod amdani yn yr adolygiad hwn gan gymheiriaid. Rwyf wedi bod yn edrych ar rai o’r argymhellion yn yr adolygiad gan gymheiriaid ac mae rhai o’r rhain yn bwysig iawn. Dywedodd y plant, ‘Mae angen athro/athrawes sy’n Sipsi arnom’. Felly, rydym angen modelau rôl ac rydym yn gwybod fod Sipsiwn yn cyflawni’n uchel iawn mewn llawer o rolau, ac yn aml, nid yw’r cyhoedd yn gwybod am hynny. Ac yna, ‘Ni fyddaf yn mynd i’r gwersyll y flwyddyn nesaf am fod Mam a Dad yn dweud bod yr ysgol yn rhy bell ac nid ydynt eisiau i mi fynd ar y bws ar fy mhen fy hun; mae Mam yn credu y byddaf yn gweld ac yn dysgu pethau drwg.’ Felly, rwy’n credu ei bod yn bwysig deall cefndir cymunedol y plant sy’n deillio o ofal dros y plant.

Ac ar y tri phwynt olaf, roeddent yn dweud bod ganddynt dri awgrym i ysgolion ynglŷn â sut i weithio gyda disgyblion sy’n Sipsiwn a Theithwyr. Rhif un yw: ‘byddwch yn ymwybodol o’n diwylliant’, a chredaf fod gan hynny ffordd bell i fynd, ond mae’n bwysig iawn. ‘Byddwch yn ymwybodol o’r gwahaniaethau rhyngom a’r gymuned sefydlog’, ac fel y dywedodd ein Cadeirydd, ni cheir un ateb sy’n addas i bawb. Mae’n rhaid i ni fod yn ymwybodol o’r gwahaniaethau sydd yno. Ac yn drydydd: ‘addysg hyblyg ac opsiynau i fynychu’n rhan-amser ar gyfer pob disgybl ledled Cymru’, sydd, unwaith eto, yn rhywbeth rwy’n credu y gallai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ymateb iddo o bosibl.

I’m contributing instead of Llyr Huws Gruffydd, although I appreciate that Llyr would have been much more involved in the discussions than myself—I’ve actually just read the report today. I do appreciate many of the comments that have been made here today, but I think, having read the report, I may come from a different perspective on many of the issues. I agreed with what the Cabinet Secretary said about the fact that the groups are not homogeneous, and I think sometimes some of the recommendations may look upon ethnic minorities and black and other groupings in a more negative light than you anticipated. For example, it says in the report from which the Minister quoted that Indian families and similar families—. I’ve got a strong connection to Indian communities in Cardiff and I think that if we potentially nurture the fact that they are very hardworking, they’re driven, they often go into very highly driven careers—I think, perhaps, we can turn it around and say, ‘Well, how can we use the ethnic minority pupils in a positive way to share those experiences with those who may not be as successful?’, as opposed to saying, ‘Well, yes, they’re not doing as well as other pupils’ and that we need a specific thing to target them alone.

I’m conscious of wanting everybody to have fair play within the classroom, coming from a family of teachers, and I’d want to be able to allow those teachers to teach in a way that they feel that the collective in the classroom can be part of the same type of educational proposals. So, yes, I think teachers should be aware of Gypsies and Travellers and their communities; yes, I think, of course, we should be aware of different cultures, but I don’t think that we should be saying they should be taught in a different way or that they should have potentially—well, I don’t know what the specific is because I couldn’t see what the specific recommendations were in the committee report to say, ‘Well, actually X, Y and Z needs to be done for those particular groupings’.

So, for example, I’ve worked quite a lot with refugee children in Neath Port Talbot, and I’ve said to the headteachers there, ‘Well, little Johnny can’t get to school because the parents can’t afford to get there’ and they said to me ‘Well, yes, I’d like to put in extra provision for them to get here, but if I do that I have to do that for everybody.’ And I think that if we’re going to be making changes, I think we have to look at it in a wider way so that we don’t exclude anybody from any changes. I totally acknowledge that there may be very fundamental issues with different groupings of people, but I don’t know if we want to facilitate difference. I think we want to facilitate trying to collectively work together. Perhaps I’m wrong, perhaps Llyr will be annoyed with what I’m saying here today, but I think sometimes we can focus on negatives. We have to see the wealth of experience and the family backgrounds that people come from, from other countries, where, actually their work ethics, dare I say it—controversially—are better than ours. They want to get out and work, and they want to engage positively with society.

Like with any grant, I think, in a general way we need to be able to ensure that we track how positive it is and we track where the money is going. And I think if I agree with anything in the report, I agree with that. We have to understand, now that change has been made, that we are able to say, ‘Well, actually, this will lead to improvements for our young people’. But we have to acknowledge that teachers are under massive strain, and if we’re going to be putting specific proposals in as a result of this report, then it has to be done with that work pressure in mind.

Rwy’n cyfrannu yn lle Llyr Huws Gruffydd, er fy mod yn sylweddoli y byddai Llyr wedi chwarae llawer mwy o ran yn y trafodaethau na minnau—nid wyf ond newydd ddarllen yr adroddiad heddiw mewn gwirionedd. Rwy’n gwerthfawrogi llawer o’r sylwadau a wnaed yma heddiw, ond rwy’n credu, ar ôl darllen yr adroddiad, fod gennyf safbwynt gwahanol ar lawer o’r materion. Roeddwn yn cytuno â’r hyn a ddywedodd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet am y ffaith nad yw’r grwpiau’n unffurf, ac rwy’n credu weithiau efallai bod rhai o’r argymhellion yn edrych ar leiafrifoedd ethnig a phobl dduon a grwpiau eraill mewn golau mwy negyddol nag a ragwelwyd gennych. Er enghraifft, mae’n dweud yn yr adroddiad y dyfynnodd y Gweinidog ohono fod teuluoedd Indiaidd a theuluoedd tebyg—. Mae gennyf gysylltiad cryf â chymunedau Indiaidd yng Nghaerdydd ac os porthwn y ffaith eu bod yn weithgar iawn, yn llawn ysgogiad, eu bod yn aml yn dilyn gyrfaoedd sy’n galw am lawer o ysgogiad—credaf y gallwn, o bosibl, droi hynny o gwmpas a dweud, ‘Wel, sut y gallwn ddefnyddio disgyblion o leiafrifoedd ethnig mewn ffordd gadarnhaol i rannu’r profiadau hyn â’r rhai nad ydynt mor llwyddiannus o bosibl?’, yn hytrach na dweud, ‘Wel, ie, nid ydynt yn gwneud cystal â disgyblion eraill,’ ac mae angen i ni gael rhywbeth penodol i’w targedu hwy’n unig.

Rwy’n ymwybodol o fod eisiau i bawb gael chwarae teg yn yr ystafell ddosbarth, a minnau’n dod o deulu o athrawon, a byddwn eisiau gallu caniatáu i’r athrawon hynny ddysgu mewn ffordd y teimlant y gall pawb yn yr ystafell ddosbarth fod yn rhan o’r un math o argymhellion addysgol. Felly, ydw, rwy’n credu y dylai athrawon fod yn ymwybodol o Sipsiwn a Theithwyr a’u cymunedau; ydw, rwy’n credu, wrth gwrs, y dylem fod yn ymwybodol o wahanol ddiwylliannau, ond nid wyf yn credu y dylem fod yn dweud y dylent gael eu haddysgu mewn ffordd wahanol neu y dylent gael, o bosibl—wel, nid wyf yn gwybod beth ydyw’n benodol gan na allwn weld beth oedd yr argymhellion penodol yn adroddiad y pwyllgor i ddweud, ‘Wel, mae angen i X, Y a Z gael eu gwneud ar gyfer y grwpiau penodol hynny mewn gwirionedd’.

Felly, er enghraifft, rwyf wedi gweithio cryn dipyn gyda phlant ffoaduriaid yng Nghastell-nedd Port Talbot, ac rwyf wedi dweud wrth y penaethiaid yno, ‘Wel, ni all Joni bach fynd i’r ysgol am na all y rhieni fforddio teithio yno’ ac roeddent yn dweud wrthyf ‘Wel, ie, hoffwn sicrhau darpariaeth ychwanegol ar eu cyfer i’w cael nhw yma, ond os wyf yn gwneud hynny bydd yn rhaid i mi ei wneud ar gyfer pawb.’ Ac os ydym yn mynd i wneud newidiadau, credaf fod angen i ni edrych arno’n ehangach fel nad ydym yn eithrio unrhyw un o unrhyw newidiadau. Rwy’n cydnabod yn llwyr y gall fod gan wahanol grwpiau o bobl broblemau sylfaenol iawn, ond nid wyf yn gwybod a ydym am hwyluso gwahaniaeth. Rwy’n credu ein bod yn awyddus i hwyluso gweithio gyda’n gilydd. Efallai fy mod yn anghywir, efallai y bydd Llyr yn flin â’r hyn rwy’n ei ddweud yma heddiw, ond rwy’n credu weithiau ein bod yn canolbwyntio ar bethau negyddol. Mae’n rhaid i ni weld y cyfoeth o brofiad a’r cefndiroedd teuluol y daw pobl ohonynt, o wledydd eraill, lle y mae eu hetheg gwaith, mewn gwirionedd, os meiddiaf ddweud—yn ddadleuol—yn well na’n hetheg gwaith ni. Maent eisiau mynd allan i weithio, ac maent yn awyddus i ymgysylltu’n gadarnhaol â’r gymdeithas.

Fel gydag unrhyw grant, rwy’n credu, mewn ffordd gyffredinol mae angen i ni allu sicrhau ein bod yn olrhain pa mor bositif ydyw ac yn olrhain i ble y mae’r arian yn mynd. Ac os wyf yn cytuno ag unrhyw beth yn yr adroddiad, rwy’n credu fy mod yn cytuno â hynny. Mae’n rhaid i ni ddeall, nawr bod y newid wedi’i wneud, ein bod yn gallu dweud, ‘Wel, mewn gwirionedd, bydd yn arwain at welliannau i’n pobl ifanc’. Ond mae’n rhaid i ni gydnabod bod athrawon o dan straen enfawr, ac os ydym yn mynd i gyflwyno cynigion penodol o ganlyniad i’r adroddiad hwn, yna mae’n rhaid ei wneud gan gadw’r pwysau gwaith hwnnw mewn cof. 

Can I commend the children’s committee—the Chair in particular, but also the other Members—for producing such a lucid and apposite report? I think this is very high-quality scrutiny, and just the sort of thing that Assembly committees should be doing. The key issue, obviously, is what happens when you approach questions to increase the mainstreaming as above ring fencing. This is something that we often face in the choices we make here. In an ideal world, you do want as mainstream a system as possible, which, I think, the previous speaker, Bethan, was hinting at.

But we also know that you need very specific actions, sometimes. I have done a lot of work, over the years, on the issue of looked-after children, and there are many echoes here, particularly about the gap in achievement at GCSE and then for the future opportunities that these young people have. But I think what this committee report has really nailed is that if you do move to mainstreaming approaches, you do need very clear and effective monitoring and evaluation. Otherwise, you can lose the whole purpose of the intervention—the intervention is still desired. We may be moving from a very specific grant to a more general approach, but the need for intervention is clearly accepted. I have to say I agree with the Members—both Darren and Julie’s very eloquent contributions—that it is very worrying that the approach has been quite so slipshod amongst those who are responsible for ensuring this change occurs effectively, which, at the moment, we just don’t have the evidence to conclude that it has. So, I think it’s very, very important that we can demonstrate effective monitoring and evaluation.

There is a danger, I think, that the specific needs of minority children can be overlooked, even when there’s a clear political priority for special attention. This is something we need to be very aware of. Can I just repeat the point about the gap in achievement? I think it’s always appropriate, when we look at specific groups, to compare them to the peer population, because—and, again, reflecting earlier contributions—I think our expectations should be the same. Why on earth should we stand in front of people and say, ‘Well, those with particular needs and special circumstances—we start by just lowering the bar and the expectations that those people can be expected to achieve’? I think that’s really, really poor. The gap at the moment, with 24.5 per cent achieving the basic level at GCSE, compared with 59 per cent in the peer population, is too wide. It has closed, and it may be because the consortia are, in their own way, which we cannot demonstrate, working productively. But we’ve got to have evidence, and, anyway, I think we would all agree we want that gap closed much more considerably than that.

I do think that, in measuring the effectiveness of public policy, there is always that moment when we hear from those who have the executive responsibility to implement change that we sometimes need to move to an approach that aims at general improvement, rather than being tied down to very specific, targeted outcomes. There are times when that is the appropriate way—to be more expansive. But I do think that there’s a lot of evidence that we’re at the stage here where we need to be more targeted, and, frankly, when you’re more targeted, I think you need very good evidence to move away from a more ring-fenced funding system. But I do congratulate the work that’s been done here; I think it’s a very important contribution.

A gaf fi ganmol y pwyllgor plant—y Cadeirydd yn arbennig, ond yr Aelodau eraill hefyd—am gynhyrchu adroddiad mor eglur a phriodol? Rwy’n credu bod hwn yn graffu o ansawdd uchel, ac yn union y math o beth y dylai pwyllgorau Cynulliad ei wneud. Y mater allweddol, yn amlwg, yw’r hyn sy’n digwydd pan fyddwch yn ymdrin â chwestiynau i gynyddu prif-ffrydio yn hytrach na chlustnodi. Mae hyn yn rhywbeth rydym yn aml yn ei wynebu yn y dewisiadau a wnawn yma. Mewn byd delfrydol, rydych eisiau system sydd mor agos at y brif ffrwd ag y bo modd, sef yr hyn yr oedd y siaradwr blaenorol, Bethan, yn ei awgrymu rwy’n credu.

Ond rydym hefyd yn gwybod bod angen camau gweithredu penodol iawn weithiau. Rwyf wedi gwneud llawer o waith, dros y blynyddoedd, ar blant sy’n derbyn gofal, ac mae llawer o adleisiau yma, yn enwedig ynglŷn â’r bwlch cyflawniad ar lefel TGAU ac yna’r cyfleoedd y mae’r bobl ifanc hyn yn eu cael yn y dyfodol. Ond rwy’n credu mai’r hyn y mae’r adroddiad pwyllgor hwn wedi’i hoelio mewn gwirionedd yw eich bod angen systemau monitro a gwerthuso clir iawn os ydych yn symud at ddulliau prif ffrwd. Fel arall, gallwch golli holl bwrpas yr ymyriad—mae’r ymyriad yn un a ddymunir o hyd. Mae’n bosibl ein bod yn symud o grant penodol iawn at ymagwedd fwy cyffredinol, ond yn amlwg, mae’r angen am ymyrraeth wedi’i dderbyn. Mae’n rhaid i mi ddweud fy mod yn cytuno â’r Aelodau—cyfraniadau hynod o huawdl Darren a Julie—ac rwy’n pryderu’n fawr fod y dull o weithredu wedi bod mor esgeulus ymhlith y rhai sy’n gyfrifol am sicrhau bod y newid hwn yn digwydd yn effeithiol, ac nid oes gennym y dystiolaeth i ddod i’r casgliad ei fod wedi digwydd yn effeithiol ar hyn o bryd. Felly, rwy’n credu ei bod yn hynod o bwysig inni allu arddangos trefn fonitro a gwerthuso effeithiol.

Mae perygl, rwy’n credu, y gall anghenion penodol plant lleiafrifol gael eu hanwybyddu, hyd yn oed pan geir blaenoriaeth wleidyddol glir i roi sylw arbennig iddynt. Dyma rywbeth y mae angen i ni fod yn ymwybodol iawn ohono. A gaf fi ailadrodd y pwynt ynglŷn â’r bwlch cyrhaeddiad? Rwy’n credu ei bod bob amser yn briodol, pan fyddwn yn edrych ar grwpiau penodol, i’w cymharu â phoblogaeth eu cymheiriaid, oherwydd—ac unwaith eto, gan adleisio cyfraniadau blaenorol—rwy’n credu y dylai ein disgwyliadau fod yr un fath. Pam yn y byd y dylem sefyll o flaen pobl a dweud, ‘Wel, y rhai sydd ag anghenion penodol ac amgylchiadau arbennig—dechreuwn drwy ostwng y bar a’r disgwyliadau y gellir disgwyl i’r bobl hynny eu cyflawni’? Rwy’n credu bod hynny’n eithriadol o wael. Mae’r bwlch ar hyn o bryd, gyda 24.5 y cant yn cyflawni’r lefel sylfaenol yn eu TGAU o’i gymharu â 59 y cant ymhlith poblogaeth eu cymheiriaid, yn rhy fawr. Mae wedi cau, ac efallai fod hynny’n deillio o’r ffaith fod y consortia’n gweithio’n gynhyrchiol yn eu ffordd eu hunain, er na allwn arddangos hynny. Ond mae’n rhaid i ni gael tystiolaeth, a beth bynnag, rwy’n credu y byddem i gyd yn cytuno ein bod eisiau i’r bwlch hwnnw gael ei gau gryn dipyn yn fwy na hynny.

Wrth fesur effeithiolrwydd polisi cyhoeddus, rwy’n credu bod yna bob amser adeg pan fyddwn yn clywed gan y rhai sydd â chyfrifoldeb gweithredol am weithredu newid fod angen inni symud weithiau tuag at ymagwedd sy’n anelu at welliant cyffredinol yn hytrach na chael ein clymu wrth ganlyniadau targed penodol iawn. Weithiau, dyna’r ffordd sy’n briodol—bod yn fwy eang. Ond rwy’n credu bod yna lawer o dystiolaeth ein bod ar y cam lle y mae angen i ni dargedu mwy, ac a dweud y gwir, pan fyddwch yn targedu mwy, rwy’n credu bod angen tystiolaeth dda iawn arnoch i gamu’n ôl oddi wrth system gyllido sy’n clustnodi mwy. Ond rwy’n llongyfarch y gwaith a wnaed yma; rwy’n credu ei fod yn gyfraniad pwysig iawn.

Thank you very much. I now call on the Cabinet Secretary for Education, Kirsty Williams.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Galwaf yn awr ar Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg, Kirsty Williams.

Thank you very much, Deputy Presiding Officer. Could I begin where David Melding left off, in thanking, most sincerely, Lynne Neagle and the members of the committee for their report? As stated by the Chair, the committee focused this inquiry on the impact of the new grant funding arrangements that were introduced in 2015-16, following the rationalisation of a number of education grants. Now, much of the evidence provided to the committee covers, in my view, long-standing issues, a number of which predate the new funding arrangements through the education improvement grant. The diverse range of opinions provided in the evidence to the committee perfectly highlights that this is a complex area where one single, consensual approach to how the challenges should be taken forward and managed does not prevail. There is validity in the various points of view expressed, and I am grateful to the committee for their hard work in drawing together the issues in such a coherent fashion for debate here today. In seeking to understand the challenges that some minority ethnic and Gypsy, Roma and Traveller learners can face in achieving their educational potential, the committee has embraced a difficult but very important area of work.

It is no surprise to Members, I hope, that I am committed to equality of opportunity and equity of provision, ensuring that all children and young people are supported to achieve their potential, regardless of their background or their personal circumstances. In opposition, as now in my role as Cabinet Secretary for Education, I have always prioritised action to ensure all children and young people have the opportunities they need and deserve to achieve that potential, and much has been achieved. But the challenge remains, as we have heard from David Melding, for some groups, significant, and there is much more to be done. It’s no exaggeration, Deputy Presiding Officer, to say that we are embarking on the single greatest educational reform since the 1960s. We’re delivering a new curriculum and assessment arrangements, and a clear strategic focus on the supporting factors that will help all our learners achieve.

In ensuring our most disadvantaged learners are supported to achieve their potential, I will be releasing a revised plan of action for education in due course, which will demonstrate my commitment to an inclusive education system, with equity of opportunity for each and every learner at its heart. I welcome the committee’s recognition of the recent improvements in performance for the vast majority of these learner groups, and that is something to be celebrated. And I thank Darren Millar for highlighting some of the good practice that exists in our education system. Yes, in Gwent, I recently had the pleasure of visiting Lliswerry school. I saw for myself the hard work that they do, but it extends beyond Gwent into, for instance, some of the work done at Monkton in Pembrokeshire, who are exemplars in how they support their children.

And a number of ethnic minority learner groups, as we’ve heard from Bethan Jenkins, already outperform the national averages, and that is to be welcomed and celebrated, as Bethan has done today. As I have said, it’s important that we recognise this complex picture. Gypsy, Roma, Traveller and minority ethnic learners do not form one homogenous group. The individual needs and attainment levels of these learners vary significantly from some of our most able and talented children to those who are achieving well under the national average. The committee recognises this in the report, and, as I said, it’s an issue I am also very aware of. But as I’ve said, the challenge is significant, and in particular in relation to those groups who stubbornly remain below the national average, and that’s why I’m pleased to see the report recognises the positive contribution of our services and schools over the years.

Our schools, our local authority support services and our regional school improvement services should have, and do in many cases, extensive knowledge and expertise in supporting these learners. I firmly believe that our strength and future success is not grounded in my office in Tŷ Hywel, but it is in the sector, working as a whole, in partnership within a self-improving system that values our teaching profession and the diversity of our society.

Moving to the committee’s recommendations—it provided 14 recommendations in its report, which provide, I believe, a clear focus for action. I have responded formally and, I believe, positively, to the committee, outlining my agreement to all but one of the recommendations. I have rejected the committee’s recommendation to revisit the equality impact assessments undertaken some years ago. I understand why the committee is disappointed at this, but as the committee makes no explicit recommendation to change the funding mechanism, I feel a separate impact assessment at this stage would not be beneficial and our efforts and those of my officials and the service are better directed in supporting and delivering on all the other committee’s recommendations, which I believe will take us forward into the future.

One of the recommendations I am particularly very strongly in agreement with, and that is that the current education performance framework is not sufficiently robust. It simply is not, and there was no hiding from that during the committee sessions. And that is why, prior to the publication of the committee’s report, I have asked my officials to strengthen the framework for the education improvement grant for schools. Over the past few months, I am pleased to say that they have worked with the regional consortia to establish an improved and much more robust outcomes framework, which will provide a focus to challenge and support local authorities and consortia on efforts to improve educational outcomes for these learners from 2017-18. The education improvement grant outcomes framework articulates what our national outcomes are, and demonstrates how, through the EIG, regional consortia strategies contribute to the delivery of these outcomes, and ensures that the EIG is having a positive impact on learner outcomes. The intention through the framework is to move away from activity-led prescription to being outcome-focused, whilst remaining sophisticated enough to draw on the activity if required. The revised framework will be published alongside the regional consortia business plans for 2017-18. I’m also pleased that Estyn has agreed to revisit the subject through a short review in 2018-19. The review will focus on progress since 2011, and its report at that time, and will consider the impact of the current services and support for these learners. That review of that report is well overdue.

What this evidence has crystallised for me, Deputy Presiding Officer, is that there is a delicate balance between supporting all learners to access the opportunities to achieve their potential and respecting and valuing the diverse nature of our communities, which helps make today’s Wales the modern and progressive society in which I—and, I hope, the majority in this Chamber—want to live. Over time, attendance has improved, educational attainment has improvement, and expectations, which are absolutely crucial, have rightly increased. And we have listened to our communities. I will indeed publish the Save the Children Travelling Ahead project peer research report on Learning Wales, and I will make it available to every school, to every local authority and every regional consortia, so that our educational professionals and service providers can consider the views put forward by the young people in their provision.

In many cases, our services have done a good job, and I want to thank them for their determination. But I now ask them to increase their efforts to ensure that more of these learners and their families feel comfortable registering their characteristics on the annual school census returns, so that I can be assured that the support available for them through school budgets and our grant funding reflects their numbers.

Darren Millar, I am hopeful that our Diamond review, our continuation of EMA and support for FE learners to address barriers will continue to provide a financial framework to encourage people into FE and HE, but expectations of those communities are key. A valuable point was made with regard to the diversity of our teaching profession. Our teaching profession is not as diverse as I would want it to be, and I will be considering, with the Education Workforce Council, what more we can do to encourage diversity in our teaching profession.

Deputy Presiding Officer, can I thank Members for their contributions this afternoon, and thank the committee once again for this valuable report? It has strengthened my arm in being able to galvanise action within the department, especially with regard to monitoring. I look forward to working alongside committee members in future work in this area.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Dirprwy Lywydd. A gaf fi ddechrau lle y gorffennodd David Melding, a diolch, yn ddiffuant, i Lynne Neagle ac aelodau’r pwyllgor am eu hadroddiad? Fel y nododd y Cadeirydd, canolbwyntiodd ymchwiliad y pwyllgor ar effaith y trefniadau cyllid grant newydd a gyflwynwyd yn 2015-16, yn dilyn ad-drefnu nifer o grantiau addysg. Nawr, mae llawer o’r dystiolaeth a ddarparwyd i’r pwyllgor yn ymdrin, yn fy marn i, â materion hirdymor, gyda nifer ohonynt yn rhagflaenu’r trefniadau cyllido newydd drwy’r grant gwella addysg. Mae’r ystod eang o safbwyntiau a ddarparwyd yn y dystiolaeth i’r pwyllgor yn amlygu’n berffaith fod hwn yn faes cymhleth lle na cheir un ymagwedd y mae pawb yn cydsynio yn ei chylch ynglŷn â sut y dylid datblygu a rheoli’r heriau. Mae dilysrwydd i’w ganfod yn y gwahanol safbwyntiau a fynegwyd, ac rwy’n ddiolchgar i’r pwyllgor am eu gwaith caled yn dwyn y materion ynghyd mewn modd mor gydlynol i’w trafod yma heddiw. Wrth geisio deall yr heriau a all wynebu rhai dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig a dysgwyr sy’n Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr o ran cyflawni eu potensial addysgol, mae’r pwyllgor wedi mynd i’r afael â maes gwaith anodd ond pwysig iawn.

Nid yw’n syndod i’r Aelodau, rwy’n gobeithio, fy mod wedi ymrwymo i gyfle cyfartal a darpariaeth deg gan sicrhau bod pob plentyn a pherson ifanc yn cael eu cynorthwyo i gyflawni eu potensial, waeth beth yw eu cefndir neu eu hamgylchiadau personol. Yn yr wrthblaid, fel yn awr yn fy rôl fel Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg, rwyf bob amser wedi blaenoriaethu camau i sicrhau bod pob plentyn a pherson ifanc yn cael y cyfleoedd y maent eu hangen ac yn eu haeddu i gyflawni’r potensial hwnnw, ac mae llawer wedi’i gyflawni. Ond mae’r her yn parhau i fod yn sylweddol i rai grwpiau, fel y clywsom gan David Melding, ac mae llawer mwy i’w wneud. Nid gormodiaith, Dirprwy Lywydd, yw dweud ein bod ar drothwy’r diwygiad mwyaf yn y byd addysg ers y 1960au. Rydym yn cyflwyno cwricwlwm a threfniadau asesu newydd, a ffocws strategol clir ar y ffactorau ategol a fydd yn helpu pob un o’n dysgwyr i gyflawni.

Wrth sicrhau bod ein dysgwyr mwyaf difreintiedig yn cael eu cynorthwyo i gyflawni eu potensial, byddaf yn rhyddhau cynllun gweithredu diwygiedig ar gyfer addysg ymhen y rhawg a fydd yn dangos fy ymrwymiad i system addysg gynhwysol, gyda chyfle cyfartal i bob dysgwr yn ganolog ynddo. Rwy’n croesawu cydnabyddiaeth y pwyllgor o’r gwelliannau diweddar ym mherfformiad y mwyafrif helaeth o’r grwpiau dysgwyr hyn, ac mae hynny’n rhywbeth i’w ddathlu. A diolch i Darren Millar am dynnu sylw at rai o’r arferion da sy’n bodoli yn ein system addysg. Do, yng Ngwent, yn ddiweddar, cefais y pleser o ymweld ag ysgol Llysweri. Gwelais y gwaith caled y maent yn ei wneud drosof fy hun, ond mae’n ymestyn y tu hwnt i Went, at y gwaith a wnaed yng Nghil-maen yn Sir Benfro, er enghraifft, sy’n dangos esiampl yn y modd y maent yn cynorthwyo eu plant.

Ac mae nifer o grwpiau dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig, fel y clywsom gan Bethan Jenkins, eisoes yn perfformio’n well na lefelau cyfartaledd cenedlaethol, ac mae hynny i’w groesawu a’i ddathlu, fel y mae Bethan wedi’i wneud heddiw. Fel y dywedais, mae’n bwysig ein bod yn cydnabod y darlun cymhleth hwn. Nid un grŵp unffurf yw dysgwyr sy’n Sipsiwn, Roma, a Theithwyr a dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig. Mae anghenion unigol a lefelau cyrhaeddiad y dysgwyr hyn yn amrywio’n sylweddol o rai o’n plant mwyaf galluog a thalentog i’r rhai sy’n cyflawni’n llawer is na’r cyfartaledd cenedlaethol. Mae’r pwyllgor yn cydnabod hyn yn yr adroddiad, ac fel y dywedais, mae’n fater rwyf hefyd yn ymwybodol iawn ohono. Ond fel y dywedais, mae’r her yn sylweddol, ac yn arbennig mewn perthynas â’r grwpiau ystyfnig sy’n parhau o dan y cyfartaledd cenedlaethol, a dyna pam rwy’n falch o weld bod yr adroddiad yn cydnabod cyfraniad cadarnhaol ein gwasanaethau a’n hysgolion dros y blynyddoedd.

Dylai ein hysgolion, gwasanaethau cymorth ein hawdurdodau lleol a’n gwasanaethau gwella ysgolion rhanbarthol gael gwybodaeth ac arbenigedd helaeth i gynorthwyo’r dysgwyr hyn, ac mae’r rhain ganddynt eisoes mewn llawer o achosion,. Rwy’n credu’n gryf nad yw ein cryfder a’n llwyddiant yn y dyfodol yn deillio o fy swyddfa yn Nhŷ Hywel, ond yn hytrach o’r sector, yn gweithio fel cyfanrwydd, mewn partneriaeth o fewn system hunanwella sy’n rhoi gwerth ar ein proffesiwn addysgu ac amrywiaeth ein cymdeithas.

Gan symud at argymhellion y pwyllgor—darparodd 14 o argymhellion yn ei adroddiad, argymhellion sy’n darparu ffocws clir ar gyfer gweithredu yn fy marn i. Rwyf wedi ymateb yn ffurfiol ac yn gadarnhaol i’r pwyllgor, rwy’n credu, yn dangos fy mod yn cytuno â phob un ond un o’r argymhellion. Rwyf wedi gwrthod argymhelliad y pwyllgor i edrych eto ar yr asesiadau o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb a gynhaliwyd rai blynyddoedd yn ôl. Rwy’n deall pam fod hyn yn destun siom i’r pwyllgor, ond gan nad yw’r pwyllgor yn gwneud unrhyw argymhelliad penodol ar gyfer newid y mecanwaith cyllido, rwy’n teimlo na fyddai asesiad effaith ar wahân yn fuddiol ar hyn o bryd ac mae’n well cyfeirio ein hymdrechion ac ymdrechion fy swyddogion a’r gwasanaeth tuag at gefnogi a chyflawni pob un o argymhellion eraill y pwyllgor, ac rwy’n credu y bydd hynny’n mynd â ni ymlaen i’r dyfodol.

Un o’r argymhellion rwy’n cytuno’n arbennig o gryf ag ef yw nad yw’r fframwaith perfformiad addysg presennol yn ddigon cadarn. Nid ydyw, yn syml, ac nid oedd modd cuddio rhag hynny yn ystod sesiynau’r pwyllgor. A dyna pam, cyn cyhoeddi adroddiad y pwyllgor, rwyf wedi gofyn i fy swyddogion gryfhau’r fframwaith ar gyfer y grant gwella addysg i ysgolion. Dros y misoedd diwethaf, rwy’n falch o ddweud eu bod wedi gweithio gyda’r consortia rhanbarthol i sefydlu fframwaith canlyniadau gwell a llawer mwy cadarn, a fydd yn canolbwyntio ar herio a chynorthwyo awdurdodau lleol a chonsortia gydag ymdrechion i wella canlyniadau addysgol i’r dysgwyr hyn o 2017-18. Mae’r fframwaith canlyniadau ar gyfer y grant gwella addysg yn mynegi beth yw ein canlyniadau cenedlaethol, ac yn dangos sut y mae strategaethau consortia rhanbarthol, drwy’r grant gwella addysg, yn cyfrannu at gyflawni’r canlyniadau hyn, ac yn sicrhau bod y grant gwella addysg yn effeithio’n gadarnhaol ar ganlyniadau dysgwyr. Y bwriad, drwy’r fframwaith, yw symud oddi wrth ddull rhagnodol a arweinir gan weithgaredd i ganolbwyntio ar ganlyniadau, gan barhau i fod yn ddigon soffistigedig i bwyso ar y gweithgaredd os oes angen. Bydd y fframwaith diwygiedig yn cael ei gyhoeddi ochr yn ochr â chynlluniau busnes y consortia rhanbarthol ar gyfer 2017-18. Rwy’n falch hefyd fod Estyn wedi cytuno i ailedrych ar y mater drwy gynnal adolygiad byr yn 2018-19. Bydd yr adolygiad yn canolbwyntio ar gynnydd ers 2011, a’i adroddiad ar y pryd, a bydd yn ystyried effaith y gwasanaethau a’r cymorth presennol ar gyfer y dysgwyr hyn. Mae’n hen bryd i ni gael yr adolygiad o’r adroddiad hwnnw.

Yr hyn y mae’r dystiolaeth hon wedi’i grisialu i mi, Dirprwy Lywydd, yw bod yna gydbwysedd bregus rhwng cefnogi pob dysgwr i fanteisio ar y cyfleoedd i gyflawni eu potensial a pharchu a gwerthfawrogi natur amrywiol ein cymunedau, sy’n helpu i wneud Cymru heddiw’n gymdeithas fodern a blaengar lle rwyf fi—a’r rhan fwyaf yn y Siambr hon, rwy’n gobeithio—eisiau byw. Dros amser, mae presenoldeb wedi gwella, mae cyrhaeddiad addysgol wedi gwella, ac mae disgwyliadau, sy’n gwbl hanfodol, wedi codi, ac yn briodol felly. Ac rydym wedi gwrando ar ein cymunedau. Byddaf yn bendant yn cyhoeddi adroddiad ymchwil cymheiriaid y prosiect Teithio Ymlaen gan Achub y Plant ar Dysgu Cymru, a byddaf yn sicrhau ei fod ar gael i bob ysgol, i bob awdurdod lleol a’r consortia rhanbarthol, fel y gall ein haddysgwyr proffesiynol a’n darparwyr gwasanaethau ystyried y safbwyntiau a gyflwynwyd gan y bobl ifanc yn eu darpariaeth.

Mewn llawer o achosion, mae ein gwasanaethau wedi gwneud gwaith da, a hoffwn ddiolch iddynt am eu penderfyniad. Ond rwyf yn awr yn gofyn iddynt gynyddu eu hymdrechion i sicrhau bod mwy o’r dysgwyr hyn a’u teuluoedd yn teimlo’n gyfforddus i gofrestru eu nodweddion ar y ffurflenni cyfrifiad ysgolion blynyddol, fel y gallaf fod yn sicr fod y cymorth sydd ar gael iddynt drwy gyllidebau ysgolion a’n cyllid grant yn adlewyrchu eu niferoedd.

Darren Millar, rwy’n gobeithio y bydd ein hadolygiad Diamond, parhad ein Lwfans Cynhaliaeth Addysg a chymorth i ddysgwyr addysg bellach allu mynd i’r afael â rhwystrau yn parhau i ddarparu fframwaith ariannol i annog pobl i mewn i addysg bellach ac addysg uwch, ond mae disgwyliadau’r cymunedau hynny’n allweddol. Gwnaed pwynt pwysig mewn perthynas ag amrywiaeth ein proffesiwn addysgu. Nid yw ein proffesiwn addysgu mor amrywiol ag y byddwn eisiau iddo fod, a byddaf yn ystyried, gyda Chyngor y Gweithlu Addysg, beth arall y gallwn ei wneud i annog amrywiaeth yn ein proffesiwn addysgu.

Dirprwy Lywydd, a gaf fi ddiolch i’r Aelodau am eu cyfraniadau y prynhawn yma, a diolch i’r pwyllgor unwaith eto am yr adroddiad gwerthfawr hwn? Mae wedi cryfhau fy ngallu i ysgogi pobl i weithredu yn yr adran, yn enwedig mewn perthynas â monitro. Edrychaf ymlaen at weithio ochr yn ochr ag aelodau’r pwyllgor ar waith yn y maes hwn yn y dyfodol.

Thank you very much. I call on Lynne Neagle, as Chair of the committee, to reply to the debate.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Galwaf ar Lynne Neagle, fel Cadeirydd y pwyllgor, i ymateb i’r ddadl.

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer. Can I thank all the Members who have contributed this afternoon? I think it’s been an excellent debate. Darren Millar, thank you for your contribution and for your work on the inquiry. You quite rightly highlighted the quite alarming patchwork nature, really, of the provision and the fact that we were, as a committee, unable to actually identify what was happening on the ground, which was, in itself, very worrying. I, too, am grateful for the tribute that you paid to the Gwent ethnic minority support service, who I think made a big impression on the whole committee and who are doing an absolutely excellent job. But the problem that we have got is that, as far as we know, those cases of good practice are not being spread. And as you say, the evidence from the consortia was disappointing. I do share your concerns about the session that we had with Estyn. It was worrying that they came to us and said that they had done this review back in 2011 and hadn’t actually followed up on the recommendations. I think if the Welsh Government was doing that, we would have something very strong to say about it. I think, with the inspectorates, we have to expect that there will be that rigour in following up where they have invested the time in actually inspecting something.

Can I thank Julie Morgan for her contribution? Julie is a very passionate advocate of the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller community, and especially of the children, and I was really pleased that Julie, as a member of the committee, played such a key role in the inquiry. I share the concern that the equality impact assessment that was undertaken was not sufficient, and I know that the stakeholders felt that, and I hope that, although mindful of what the Welsh Government have just said, going forward, the Welsh Government will learn lessons from this in taking similar decisions in the future.

Julie made very important points about role models, and that was something that came out in the inquiry—that we're trying to encourage these young people to be in school, but yet they haven't actually got many role models, and that goes for Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children, but also for minority ethnic children. That was also an issue that came out in the inquiry. And thank you for highlighting the peer-review project. I think it's vitally important that we all keep the views of children at the centre of what we are trying to achieve.

Can I thank Bethan Jenkins for her contribution, for stepping up to the plate for Llyr today? It's much appreciated. Thank you for your comments. I don't think the committee was saying that these are a homogenous group. Particularly with minority ethnic learners, that is certainly not the case, but we have to make sure that where we have minority ethnic groups that are not performing, we ensure that the right interventions are in place, and that certainly wasn't clear from the evidence that we took. Similarly, we weren't in a position to recommend specifically what local authorities or consortia should be doing, because we just didn't have sufficient information on what was happening on the ground, which is why the key focus, really, of our recommendations has been on the need for there to be proper, rigorous monitoring and evaluation.

Can I thank David Melding for his contribution today, for highlighting the very important tensions between mainstream provision and ring-fenced targeting provision? I certainly agree with you that while we would all hope that everything can be achieved through a mainstream setting, there are clearly circumstances where that is not going to happen, and that's why we need this targeted approach. And I thank you, too, for your emphasis on the need for proper monitoring and evaluation, and also for your kind words about the committee's work in this area.

Can I thank the Cabinet Secretary for her contribution as well today, and for her very constructive engagement with the committee on this topic? I particularly welcome what you've said today about the need to strengthen the performance management framework; that is most welcome, and we will look forward to following up with you on that. And to thank Members generally for their participation today and just repeat what I've said in the previous committee debates that we've had: this isn't just a one-off that we're going to put aside and leave; we are intending to follow this up very rigorously going forward and to continue to shine a spotlight on this very important area of work. So, thank you very much, everyone.

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd. A gaf fi ddiolch i’r holl Aelodau sydd wedi cyfrannu y prynhawn yma? Rwy’n credu ei bod wedi bod yn ddadl ardderchog. Darren Millar, diolch i chi am eich cyfraniad ac am eich gwaith ar yr ymchwiliad. Roeddech yn gwbl gywir i dynnu sylw at natur dameidiog y ddarpariaeth, sy’n eithaf brawychus mewn gwirionedd, a’r ffaith nad oeddem ni, fel pwyllgor, yn gallu nodi’r hyn a oedd yn digwydd ar lawr gwlad, a oedd, ynddo’i hun, yn destun pryder mawr. Rwyf innau hefyd yn ddiolchgar i chi am dalu teyrnged i wasanaeth cymorth lleiafrifoedd ethnig Gwent, a gafodd argraff fawr, rwy’n credu, ar y pwyllgor cyfan ac sy’n gwneud gwaith hollol ragorol. Ond y broblem sydd gennym yw nad yw’r enghreifftiau hynny o arfer da yn cael eu lledaenu hyd y gwyddom. Ac fel y dywedwch, roedd y dystiolaeth gan y consortia’n siomedig. Rwy’n rhannu eich pryderon am y sesiwn a gawsom gydag Estyn. Roedd yn destun pryder eu bod wedi dod atom a dweud eu bod wedi gwneud yr adolygiad hwn yn ôl yn 2011 ac nad oeddent wedi gwneud gwaith dilynol ar yr argymhellion. Pe bai Llywodraeth Cymru yn gwneud hynny, rwy’n credu y byddai gennym rywbeth cryf iawn i’w ddweud am y peth. Gyda’r arolygiaethau, rwy’n credu bod yn rhaid i ni ddisgwyl y ceir y trylwyredd hwnnw wrth wneud gwaith dilynol lle y maent wedi buddsoddi amser, mewn gwirionedd, yn arolygu rhywbeth.

A gaf fi ddiolch i Julie Morgan am ei chyfraniad? Mae Julie yn eiriolwr brwd iawn dros y gymuned Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, ac yn enwedig y plant, ac roeddwn yn falch iawn fod Julie, fel aelod o’r pwyllgor, wedi chwarae rhan mor allweddol yn yr ymchwiliad. Rwy’n rhannu’r pryder nad oedd yr asesiad o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb a gynhaliwyd yn ddigonol, a gwn fod y rhanddeiliaid yn teimlo hynny, ac er fy mod yn ymwybodol o’r hyn y mae Llywodraeth Cymru newydd ei ddweud, rwy’n gobeithio wrth symud ymlaen y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru’n dysgu gwersi o hyn wrth wneud penderfyniadau tebyg yn y dyfodol.

Gwnaeth Julie bwyntiau pwysig iawn am fodelau rôl, ac roedd hynny’n rhywbeth a ddaeth yn amlwg yn yr ymchwiliad—rydym yn ceisio annog y bobl ifanc hyn i fod yn yr ysgol, eto i gyd nid oes ganddynt lawer o fodelau rôl mewn gwirionedd, ac mae hynny’n wir am blant Sipsiwn, Roma a Theithwyr, ond hefyd am blant o leiafrifoedd ethnig. Roedd hwnnw hefyd yn fater a ddaeth yn amlwg yn yr ymchwiliad. A diolch i chi am dynnu sylw at y prosiect adolygu gan gymheiriaid. Rwy’n credu ei bod yn hanfodol bwysig fod pawb ohonom yn cadw safbwyntiau plant yn ganolog i’r hyn rydym yn ceisio ei gyflawni.

Hoffwn ddiolch i Bethan Jenkins am ei chyfraniad, am gamu i’r adwy dros Llyr heddiw. Mae’n cael ei werthfawrogi’n fawr. Diolch i chi am eich sylwadau. Nid wyf yn credu bod y pwyllgor yn dweud bod y rhain yn grŵp unffurf. Yn enwedig gyda dysgwyr o leiafrifoedd ethnig, nid yw hynny’n wir o gwbl, ond mae’n rhaid inni wneud yn siŵr, lle y mae gennym grwpiau lleiafrifoedd ethnig nad ydynt yn perfformio, ein bod yn sicrhau bod yr ymyriadau cywir ar waith, ac yn sicr nid oedd hynny’n glir yn y dystiolaeth a gawsom. Yn yr un modd, nid oeddem mewn sefyllfa i argymell yn benodol yr hyn y dylai awdurdodau lleol neu gonsortia fod yn ei wneud, oherwydd nid oedd gennym ddigon o wybodaeth am yr hyn a oedd yn digwydd ar lawr gwlad, a dyna pam y mae ffocws allweddol ein hargymhellion, mewn gwirionedd, wedi bod ar yr angen am fonitro a gwerthuso trylwyr a phriodol.

A gaf fi ddiolch i David Melding am ei gyfraniad heddiw, am dynnu sylw at y tensiynau pwysig iawn rhwng darpariaeth prif ffrwd a darpariaeth wedi’i thargedu a’i chlustnodi? Rwy’n sicr yn cytuno â chi, er y byddai pawb ohonom yn gobeithio y gellir cyflawni popeth drwy drefniant prif ffrwd, yn amlwg ceir amgylchiadau lle nad yw hynny’n mynd i ddigwydd, a dyna pam ein bod angen dull wedi’i dargedu fel hyn. A diolch i chi, hefyd, am eich pwyslais ar yr angen am fonitro a gwerthuso priodol, a hefyd am eich geiriau caredig am waith y pwyllgor yn y maes hwn.

A gaf fi ddiolch hefyd i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet am ei chyfraniad heddiw, ac am ei hymwneud adeiladol iawn â’r pwyllgor ar y pwnc hwn? Croesawaf yn arbennig yr hyn a ddywedoch heddiw am yr angen i gryfhau’r fframwaith rheoli perfformiad; mae hynny i’w groesawu’n fawr, a byddwn yn edrych ymlaen at wneud gwaith dilynol gyda chi ar hynny. A diolch i’r Aelodau’n gyffredinol am eu cyfranogiad heddiw ac i ailadrodd yr hyn rwyf wedi’i ddweud yn ystod y dadleuon a gawsom yn flaenorol yn y pwyllgor: nid gwaith untro y byddwn yn ei roi o’r neilltu a’i adael yw hwn; rydym yn bwriadu gwneud gwaith dilynol trylwyr iawn arno wrth symud ymlaen a pharhau i dynnu sylw at y maes gwaith pwysig hwn. Felly, diolch yn fawr iawn, bawb.

Thank you. The proposal is to note the committee's report. Does any Member object? No. Therefore, the motion is agreed in accordance with Standing Order 12.36.

Diolch. Y cynnig yw nodi adroddiad y pwyllgor. A oes unrhyw Aelod yn gwrthwynebu? Nac oes. Felly, derbyniwyd y cynnig yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 12.36.

Derbyniwyd y cynnig yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 12.36.

Motion agreed in accordance with Standing Order 12.36.

6. 6. Dadl Plaid Cymru: Awdurdodau Lleol
6. 6. Plaid Cymru Debate: Local Authorities

Detholwyd y gwelliannau canlynol: gwelliant 1 yn enw Jane Hutt, a gwelliannau 2, 3, 4 a 5 yn enw Paul Davies. Os derbynnir gwelliant 1, bydd gwelliannau 2, 3, 4 a 5 yn cael eu dad-ddethol.

The following amendments have been selected: amendment 1 in the name of Jane Hutt and amendments 2, 3, 4 and 5 in the name of Paul Davies. If amendment 1 is agreed, amendments 2, 3, 4 and 5 will be deselected.

We now moved to item 6 on our agenda this afternoon, which is the Plaid Cymru debate on local authorities, and I call on Sian Gwenllian to move the motion—Sian.

Symudwn yn awr at eitem 6 ar ein hagenda y prynhawn yma, sef dadl Plaid Cymru ar awdurdodau lleol, a galwaf ar Sian Gwenllian i gynnig y cynnig—Sian.

Cynnig NDM6295 Rhun ap Iorwerth

Cynnig bod Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru:

1. Yn credu bod gwasanaethau cyhoeddus lleol o safon yn allweddol i ffyniant a llesiant ein cenedl.

2. Yn gresynu bod cyllid ar gyfer awdurdodau lleol yng Nghymru wedi gostwng 6.5 y cant ers 2011-12, gan effeithio'n anghymesur ar rai o'r bobl mwyaf gwan a hawdd eu niweidio mewn cymunedau ledled Cymru.

3. Yn cydnabod y rhan bwysig y mae awdurdodau lleol yn ei chwarae o ran:

a) datblygu economïau lleol mewn partneriaeth â'r gymuned fusnes;

b) sicrhau bod ein strydoedd yn lân ac yn ddiogel;

c) darparu addysg o safon; a

d) darparu gofal gwasanaethau cymdeithasol sy'n gofalu am y bobl mwyaf bregus mewn cymunedau ledled Cymru.

4. Yn nodi bod cyfartaledd cyflog Prif Weithredwyr Cynghorau a gaiff eu harwain gan Blaid Cymru bron £22,000 yn is na'r Cynghorau yng Nghymru a gaiff eu harwain gan Lafur.

5. Yn credu y dylai prosiectau datblygu tai fforddiadwy lleol fod yn seiliedig ar anghenion y gymuned.

6. Yn nodi llwyddiant y model tracio datblygiad plentyn, a ddefnyddir gan Gyngor Ceredigion—yr unig gyngor a ddyfarnwyd gan Estyn ei fod yn perfformio'n rhagorol yng Nghymru yn y cylch llawn diwethaf o arolygiadau—i sicrhau bod plant yn cyrraedd eu llawn botensial, gyda chymorth yn gynnar iawn i'r rhai nad ydynt yn cyflawni yn ôl y disgwyl.

7. Yn gresynu bod canran cyfanswm gwariant caffael llywodraeth leol yng Nghymru wedi parhau'n sefydlog ar 58 y cant ers 2012.

8. Yn galw ar Lywodraeth Cymru i ddileu contractau dim oriau yn y sector gofal cymdeithasol.

Motion NDM6295 Rhun ap Iorwerth

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

1. Believes that quality local public services are key to the prosperity and wellbeing of our nation.

2. Regrets that since 2011-12, funding for local authorities in Wales has decreased by 6.5 per cent, disproportionately affecting some of the weakest and most vulnerable people in communities across Wales.

3. Recognises the important role played by local authorities in:

a) developing local economies in partnership with the business community;

b) ensuring that our streets are clean and safe;

c) delivering quality education; and

d) delivering social service care that look after the most vulnerable people in communities across Wales.

4. Notes that the average salary for Chief Executives running Plaid Cymru-led Councils is nearly £22,000 less than those run by Labour Councils in Wales.

5. Believes that local affordable housing development projects should be rooted in the needs of the community.

6. Notes the successful child development tracking model, used by Ceredigion Council—the only council judged by Estyn to have excellent performance in Wales in the last full cycle of inspections—to ensure children are reaching their potential, with assistance provided at an early stage to those who are falling behind.

7. Regrets that, since 2012, the percentage total of local government procurement spend in Wales has remained static at just 58 per cent.

8. Calls on the Welsh Government to scrap zero hours contracts in the social care sector.

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Diolch. Mae’n bleser gen i, ar ran Plaid Cymru, hoelio ein sylw y prynhawn yma ar bwysigrwydd cynnal a datblygu llywodraeth leol gadarn yng Nghymru. Drwy gryfhau cymunedau, byddwn yn cryfhau Cymru.

Gyda chyhoeddiad Prif Weinidog y Deyrnas Unedig am yr etholiad cyffredinol ar 8 Mehefin yn dwyn sylw’r wasg a gwleidyddion o bob lliw, rwyf i yn falch bod yna gyfle inni oedi am ennyd yn y Senedd heddiw i drafod pwysigrwydd ein gwasanaethau cyhoeddus. Ac, wrth gwrs, mae’r etholiadau lleol yn gyfle i bobl leisio eu barn yfory.

Mae Plaid Cymru yn credu bod gwasanaethau cyhoeddus lleol o safon yn allweddol i ffyniant a llesiant ein cenedl, ond mae’r gwasanaethau cyhoeddus yma dan fygythiad. Mae cyllid wedi lleihau, a thoriadau yn dod yn sgil hynny. Mae’r Torïaid ar grwsâd ideolegol i ddatgymalu ein gwasanaethau cyhoeddus. Yn anffodus, mae gwaeth i ddod dros y blynyddoedd nesaf. Mae angen cynghorau cryf ym mhob cwr o’n gwlad, cynghorau sy’n gweithredu’n gyfrifol i amddiffyn y bobl wannaf a’r mwyaf bregus mewn cymdeithas; i amddiffyn y bobl sy’n cael eu taro waethaf gan y toriadau. Fe gafodd Cyngor Gwynedd ei ganmol gan yr archwiliwr cyhoeddus am ei gynllunio ariannol effeithiol a chadarn, er gwaetha’r toriadau.

Mae angen cynghorau cryf i amddiffyn ein gwasanaethau cyhoeddus, i fod yn darian yn erbyn y gwaethaf o’r toriadau, a pholisïau llymder y Torïaid. Ers yn rhy hir o lawer, rydym wedi bodloni ar wasanaeth eilradd gan lawer o’n cynghorau. Mae Plaid Cymru eisiau adeiladu Cymru newydd, ac, yn ein barn ni, y lle gorau i ddechrau ydy wrth ein traed. Lle mae Plaid Cymru yn arwain ein cynghorau—sir Gâr, Ceredigion, Conwy a Gwynedd—mi rydym yn darparu gwasanaethau ardderchog, er gwaetha’r cyfyngiadau ariannol llym sydd arnom ni. Mae’r cynghorau hyn yn arwain yng Nghymru, mewn meysydd mor amrywiol â thai cymdeithasol, addysg, strydoedd glân ac ailgylchu. Gydag addysg, mae Cyngor Sir Ceredigion yn arwain y ffordd fel yr unig gyngor a ddyfarnwyd gan Estyn o berfformio’n rhagorol yng Nghymru yn y cylch llawn diwethaf o arolygiadau.

Yn aml yn y Siambr yma, rydym yn trafod bod yna ddiffyg tai cymdeithasol yng Nghymru. Er mwyn mynd i’r afael â’r broblem hon, mae Cyngor Sir Gâr, dan arweiniad Plaid Cymru, wedi gweithredu, gan ymrwymo i godi 60 o dai cyngor ychwanegol dros y ddwy flynedd nesaf, fel rhan o ymrwymiad tai fforddiadwy ehangach, sydd yn addo darparu dros 1,000 o dai fforddiadwy dros y bum mlynedd nesaf. Dyma’r cyngor cyntaf yng Nghymru i adeiladu tai cyngor newydd ers y 1980au. Mi rydym ni angen tai ar gyfer ein pobl, ond mae’n rhaid i stadau newydd fod yn y llefydd cywir, ac mae’n rhaid iddyn nhw gael eu cefnogi gan yr isadeiledd cywir—ffyrdd, ysgolion, ysbytai. Yn anffodus, mae cynllun datblygu lleol cyngor Caerdydd yn enghraifft o gynllun na fydd yn gweithio er budd y bobl, gyda’r ffocws ar adeiladu tai heb ystyried y canlyniadau.

Bob blwyddyn, mae’n cynghorau ni’n gwario miliynau o bunnoedd ar brynu nwyddau a gwasanaethau, ond, yn rhy aml, mae’r arian hwn yn llifo allan o Gymru. Nid yw cyflenwyr bychain lleol mewn sefyllfa bob tro i gystadlu â chystadleuwyr mwy am gontractau cynghorau. Ers 2012, mae canran cyfanswm gwariant caffael llywodraeth leol yng Nghymru wedi parhau’n sefydlog ar 58 y cant. Yn ystod cyfnod o lymder, lle mae arian yn brin, mae’n gynyddol bwysig bod awdurdodau lleol, a’r sector cyhoeddus yn ehangach, yn sicrhau’r gwerth lleol mwyaf posibl o wariant cyhoeddus. Mae Cyngor Gwynedd eisoes wedi dechrau mynd i’r afael â’r broblem yma, gan sefydlu system gaffael newydd, i gadw’r budd yn lleol. Nid yn unig mae hyn wedi cyfeirio miliynau i’r economi lleol, ond mae hefyd wedi arbed £2.3 miliwn i’r cyngor dros bum mlynedd.

Mae cynnal gwasanaethau cyhoeddus o safon yn galw am staff o’r ansawdd gorau i’w rhedeg. Mae pobl yn haeddu tâl teilwng am eu gwaith, ond ni ddylai bod bwlch mawr rhwng cyflogau y rhai ar y top a chyflogau’r gweithwyr rheng flaen, sy’n allweddol i lwyddiant. Rydym eisiau cau’r bwlch yma, ac rydym yn credu mewn gweithio tuag at fargen deg i bob gweithiwr cyngor, gan gynnwys y rhai sydd ar gytundebau dim oriau. Rwy’n mawr obeithio y gall y Llywodraeth heddiw ymrwymo i’r egwyddor o ddileu contractau dim oriau yn y sector gofal cymdeithasol, drwy gefnogi cymal 8 ein cynnig ni. Fel arall, fe fydd eich plaid chi’n cael ei chyhuddo o ragrith, efo’ch arweinwyr ar lefel y Deyrnas Unedig yn dweud un peth tra’ch bod chi yn dewis peidio gweithredu pan fo gennych chi’r cyfle i wneud hynny yng Nghymru. Ond, yn bwysicach na hynny, byddai cefnogi cymal 8 yn arwydd clir eich bod chi ar ochr rhai o’r gweithwyr mwyaf gwerthfawr ond isaf eu parch yng Nghymru ar hyn o bryd.

I gloi, mae gwasanaethau cyhoeddus o safon yn ganolog i ffyniant ein cenedl. Nhw ydy’r glud sy’n rhwymo ein cymdeithas, a’r rhwyd ddiogelwch sy’n cynnal y mwyaf bregus yn ein cymdeithas ni. Bydd cynghorwyr Plaid Cymru yn bencampwyr eu cymunedau, ac yn defnyddio’r holl bwerau sydd ganddyn nhw i wella bywydau pobl, i gryfhau cymunedau Cymru, ac i roi grym yn ôl yn nwylo’r bobl.

Thank you. It’s a pleasure for me, on behalf of Plaid Cymru, to focus all our attention this afternoon on the importance of maintaining and developing strong local government in Wales. By strengthening our communities, we will also strengthen our nation.

With the announcement made by the UK Prime Minister of an election on 8 June taking all of the attention of the press and politicians of all hues, I am pleased that there’s an opportunity for us to pause for a moment in the Senedd this afternoon to discuss the importance of our public services. Of course, the local government elections are an opportunity for people to express their views tomorrow.

Plaid Cymru believes that local public services of quality are crucial to the prosperity and well-being of our nation, but these public services are under threat. Funding has been reduced and cuts are being made as a result of that. The Conservatives are on an ideological crusade to dismantle our public services. Unfortunately, there is worse to come over the next few years. We need strong councils in all corners of our nation, councils that act responsibly to protect our most vulnerable and the weakest in our society; to protect those people who are most affected by these cuts. Gwynedd Council was praised by the auditor general for its financial planning, which was effective and robust despite the cuts.

We need strong councils to safeguard our public services, to be a shield against the worst of these cuts and the austerity policies imposed by the Tories. For far too long, we have made do with a second-class service for many of our councils. Plaid Cymru wants to build a new Wales, and, in our view, the best starting place is at our feet. Where Plaid Cymru leads councils—in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Conwy and Gwynedd—we are providing excellent services, despite the financial limitations that we face. These councils are in the vanguard in Wales, in areas as varied as social housing, education, clean streets and recycling. With education, Ceredigion County Council is leading the way as the only council judged by Estyn to be performing excellently in Wales in the last full cycle of inspections.

Very often in this Chamber, we discuss the shortage of social housing in Wales. In order to tackle this problem, Carmarthenshire County Council, which is Plaid Cymru led, has taken action, committing to building 60 additional council houses over the next two years, as part of a commitment to a broader affordable housing programme, which pledges to provide over 1,000 affordable houses over the next five years. This is the first council in Wales to build new council houses since the 1980s. We need housing for our people, but new estates must be in the right place, and they must be supported by the necessary infrastructure—roads, schools, hospitals. Unfortunately, the Cardiff council local development plan is an example of a scheme that won’t work for the benefit of the people, with a focus on building homes without taking into account the repercussions of that.

Annually, our councils spend millions of pounds on purchasing goods and services, but, far too often, this money flows out of Wales. Small local suppliers aren’t always in a position to compete with the larger competitors for council contracts. Since 2012, the total procurement expenditure of local government in Wales has remained static at just 58 per cent. During a period of austerity, when funding is short, it’s increasingly important that local authorities, and the public sector more broadly, do secure the best local value for money in terms of public expenditure. Gwynedd Council has already started to tackle this problem, establishing a new procurement system to keep the benefits locally. Not only has this contributed millions to the local economy, but it’s also saved £2.3 million for the council over five years.

Maintaining public services of a high quality does require the highest quality staff to run those services. People deserve fair pay for their work, but there shouldn’t be a huge gap between the salaries of those at the top and the salaries of the front-line workers, who are so crucial to success. We want to close this gap, and we believe in working towards a fair deal for all council employees, including those on zero-hours contracts. I very much hope that the Government today can commit to the principle of scrapping zero-hours contracts in the social care sector by supporting clause 8 of our motion. Otherwise, your party will be accused of hypocrisy, with your leaders at the UK level saying one thing, whilst you choose not to take action here when you have the opportunity to do so in Wales. But, more importantly, supporting clause 8 would be a clear sign that you are on the side of some of our most valuable but least respected workers in Wales at the moment.

To conclude, public services of quality are central to the prosperity of our nation. They are the glue that holds our society together, and the safety net that supports the most vulnerable in our society. Plaid Cymru councillors will be champions for their communities, and will use all of the powers available to them to improve the lives of people, to strengthen Welsh communities, and to put power back in the hands of the people.

Thank you very much.

I have selected the five amendments to the motion. If amendment 1 is agreed, amendments 2, 3, 4 and 5 will be deselected. So, I call on the Cabinet Secretary for Finance and Local Government to move formally amendment 1, tabled in the name of Jane Hutt.

Diolch yn fawr iawn.

Rwyf wedi dethol y pum gwelliant i’r cynnig. Os derbynnir gwelliant 1, bydd gwelliannau 2, 3, 4 a 5 yn cael eu dad-ddethol. Felly, galwaf ar Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Gyllid a Llywodraeth Leol i gynnig gwelliant 1 a gyflwynwyd yn enw Jane Hutt yn ffurfiol.

Gwelliant 1—Jane Hutt

Dileu popeth ar ôl pwynt 1.

Amendment 1—Jane Hutt

Delete all after point 1.

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 1.

Amendment 1 moved.

Formally.

Yn ffurfiol.

Thank you very much. I call on Janet Finch-Saunders to move amendments 2, 3, 4 and 5 tabled in the name of Paul Davies.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Galwaf ar Janet Finch-Saunders i gynnig gwelliannau 2, 3, 4 a 5 a gyflwynwyd yn enw Paul Davies.

Gwelliant 2—Paul Davies

Dileu pwynt 2 a rhoi yn ei le:

Yn gresynu bod cyllid ar gyfer awdurdodau lleol yng Nghymru wedi gostwng 6.78 y cant ers 2013-14, gan effeithio'n anghymesur ar ein cymunedau gwledig, gan gynnwys toriadau o 9.98 y cant i Sir Fynwy, 9.36 y cant i Fro Morgannwg a 7.96 y cant i Gonwy.

Amendment 2—Paul Davies

Delete point 2 and replace with:

Regrets that since 2013-14, funding for local authorities in Wales has decreased by 6.78 per cent, disproportionately affecting our rural communities, including cuts of 9.98 per cent to Monmouthshire, 9.36 per cent to Vale of Glamorgan and 7.96 per cent to Conwy.

Gwelliant 3—Paul Davies

Dileu pwynt 4 a rhoi yn ei le:

Yn nodi mai cyflog Prif Weithredwr Cyngor Sir Fynwy, a gaiff ei arwain gan y Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yw un o'r isaf yng Nghymru, ac yn cymeradwyo tryloywder y cyngor o ran cyhoeddi pob gwariant.

Amendment 3—Paul Davies

Delete point 4 and replace with:

Notes that the Chief Executive salary for Welsh Conservative-led Monmouthshire County Council is one of the lowest in Wales, and commends the transparency of the council in publishing all expenditure.

Gwelliant 4—Paul Davies

Dileu pwynt 6 a rhoi yn ei le:

Yn nodi hawl pob plentyn a pherson ifanc i gael cyfle i gyrraedd eu llawn botensial, ac yn nodi pwysigrwydd cyllid uniongyrchol ar gyfer ysgolion o ran galluogi rhieni i allu dewis yr ysgol orau i'w plant.

Amendment 4—Paul Davies

Delete point 6 and replace with:

Notes the right of every child and young person to be given the opportunity to realise their full potential, and highlights the importance of direct funding for schools in enabling parents to be able to choose the best school for their children.

Gwelliant 5—Paul Davies

Dileu pwynt 8 a rhoi yn ei le:

Yn nodi gwerth gweithwyr gofal cymdeithasol o ran cynorthwyo gwasanaethau'r GIG sydd wedi'u canoli a'u gor-lwytho, a phwysigrwydd integreiddio rhwng y sectorau iechyd a gofal cymdeithasol yng Nghymru.

Amendment 5—Paul Davies

Delete point 8 and replace with:

Notes the value of social care workers in relieving overburdened, centralised NHS services, and the importance of integration between the health and social care sectors in Wales.

Cynigiwyd gwelliannau 2, 3, 4 and 5.

Amendments 2, 3, 4 and 5 moved.

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer, and I do move amendments 2 to 5 in the name of Paul Davies AM. Tomorrow, on 4 May, voters will go to the polls to elect their members in our local authorities, town and community councils. Legislation, policy and settlement distribution, of course, have been the responsibility of Welsh Labour for the past 18 years. Over this time, our residents have seen council tax increased in Wales by 187 per cent. They’ve also felt severe cuts to our bin collections, and the closure of public toilets, our libraries and our local community centres. Those living in our rural communities are blighted by the many cuts imposed by this Welsh Labour Government, especially the swingeing cuts to community transport, leaving many feeling isolated and in despair. So, it is clear that voters will be looking for change and for representatives who will fight their corner, speaking up against such imposing cuts and a lack of efficiency in the delivery of their services.

Our first amendment highlights the disproportionate cuts to rural authorities: 10 per cent, Monmouthshire; 9 per cent, Vale of Glamorgan; and nearly 8 per cent in Conwy. Council tax remains Wales’s biggest debt burden according to the citizens advice bureau, with residents now facing an increase of 187 per cent since Labour came to power. In Conwy though it’s 230 per cent, yet this hasn’t prevented Plaid Cymru, Labour, Lib Dems and the independents from supporting and voting in further increases. Street cleaning and bin collections, noted in Plaid’s motion as important functions of local government, have been slashed like never before. Yes, by Plaid Cymru and Labour. In Conwy, four-weekly bin collections and fly-tipping—now at its highest level in five years—are causing huge misery to my constituents, impacting the most on our families, our pensioners and our most vulnerable.

The Welsh Conservatives are working to protect and safeguard these vital services, pledging to restore bin collections to at least fortnightly, fundamentally opposing further and unnecessary council tax increases.

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd, ac rwy’n cynnig gwelliannau 2 i 5 yn enw Paul Davies AC. Yfory, ar 4 Mai, bydd pleidleiswyr yn pleidleisio i ethol eu haelodau yn ein hawdurdodau lleol, ein cynghorau tref a’n cynghorau cymuned. Cyfrifoldeb Llafur Cymry yw deddfwriaeth, polisi a dosbarthu setliadau, wrth gwrs, dros y 18 mlynedd diwethaf. Dros y cyfnod hwn, mae ein trigolion wedi gweld cynnydd o 187 y cant yn y dreth gyngor yng Nghymru. Maent hefyd wedi wynebu toriadau difrifol i’n casgliadau biniau, ac wedi gweld toiledau cyhoeddus, ein llyfrgelloedd a’n canolfannau cymunedol lleol yn cau. Amharwyd ar y bobl sy’n byw yn ein cymunedau gwledig gan y toriadau niferus dan law’r Llywodraeth Lafur yng Nghymru, yn enwedig y toriadau llym i drafnidiaeth gymunedol, sydd wedi peri i lawer o bobl deimlo’n ynysig a diobaith. Felly, mae’n amlwg y bydd pleidleiswyr yn chwilio am newid ac am gynrychiolwyr a fydd yn brwydro drostynt, ac yn dadlau yn erbyn toriadau anferth o’r fath a diffyg effeithlonrwydd o ran y modd y caiff eu gwasanaethau eu darparu.

Mae ein gwelliant cyntaf yn tynnu sylw at y toriadau anghymesur i awdurdodau gwledig: 10 y cant, Sir Fynwy; 9 y cant, Bro Morgannwg; a bron i 8 y cant yng Nghonwy. Y dreth gyngor yw’r baich dyled mwyaf yng Nghymru o hyd yn ôl y ganolfan cyngor ar bopeth, gyda thrigolion bellach yn wynebu cynnydd o 187 y cant ers i Lafur ddod i rym. Serch hynny, mae’n 230 y cant yng Nghonwy, ond nid yw hyn wedi atal Plaid Cymru, y Blaid Lafur, y Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol a’r aelodau annibynnol rhag cefnogi a phleidleisio dros godiadau pellach. Mae glanhau strydoedd a chasgliadau biniau, a nodir yng nghynnig Plaid Cymru fel swyddogaethau pwysig a wneir gan lywodraeth leol, wedi cael eu torri mewn modd nas gwelwyd erioed o’r blaen. Do, gan Blaid Cymru a’r Blaid Lafur. Yng Nghonwy, mae casgliadau biniau bob pedair wythnos a thipio anghyfreithlon—sydd bellach ar ei lefel uchaf ers pum mlynedd—yn achosi trallod mawr i fy etholwyr, gan effeithio’n bennaf ar ein teuluoedd, ein pensiynwyr a’n pobl fwyaf bregus.

Mae’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig yn gweithio i amddiffyn a diogelu’r gwasanaethau hanfodol hyn, gan addo adfer casgliadau biniau i drefn bythefnosol, fan lleiaf, a gwrthwynebu’n sylfaenol unrhyw gynnydd pellach a diangen yn y dreth gyngor.

Will the Member give way on that point?

A wnaiff yr Aelod ildio ar y pwynt hwnnw?

She just pledged to restore bin collections fortnightly, which, as has been pointed out already, is a bit of a nonsense really when you should be taking a local approach to this. But this was a promise by the Conservatives in England, by Eric Pickles, and they had to abandon that promise. What guarantees can she give to the people who vote tomorrow that she won’t abandon her promise?

Mae hi newydd addo adfer casgliadau biniau i drefn bythefnosol, sydd, fel y nodwyd eisoes, yn dipyn o lol mewn gwirionedd pan ddylech fod yn mabwysiadu agwedd leol tuag at hyn. Ond roedd hwn yn addewid gan y Ceidwadwyr yn Lloegr, gan Eric Pickles, a bu’n rhaid iddynt dorri’r addewid hwnnw. Pa sicrwydd y gall ei roi i’r bobl sy’n pleidleisio yfory na fydd hi’n torri ei haddewid?

I definitely won’t abandon it, and the fundamental point here is that there haven’t been any cost savings to date since the four-weekly collections came in

Social services and the care sector in Wales are in crisis. The Health Foundation states that demography, chronic conditions and rising costs will require the budget to almost double to £2.3 billion by 2030-31 to match demand, yet the lack of vision and investment under Plaid Cymru and Labour has been astounding. The Wales Public Services 2025 programme found that local authority spending per person was slashed by 13 per cent over the last seven years for our older residents. This is a national disgrace and it would take £134 million more per year, by 2020, to get back to 2009 per capita levels. Monmouthshire council, however, are leading the way with the Raglan project, remodelling the way in which social services are delivered to older people, cutting out waste, improving efficiency, and enabling better and easier access. Our amendment recognises the value of those working in our care industry, across the social care and health sector, and highlights the ineffective, day-to-day lack of joined-up services on the continuum.

Yn bendant, ni fyddaf yn torri’r addewid hwnnw, a’r pwynt sylfaenol yma yw na welwyd unrhyw arbedion hyd yn hyn ers i’r casgliadau bob pedair wythnos ddod i rym.

Mae’r gwasanaethau cymdeithasol a’r sector gofal yng Nghymru’n wynebu argyfwng. Dywed y Sefydliad Iechyd y bydd angen i’r gyllideb ddyblu bron i £2.3 biliwn erbyn 2030-31 i ateb y galw o ganlyniad i ddemograffeg, cyflyrau cronig a chostau cynyddol, ac eto mae’r diffyg gweledigaeth a’r diffyg buddsoddi o dan Blaid Cymru a’r Blaid Lafur wedi bod yn syfrdanol. Canfu rhaglen Gwasanaethau Cyhoeddus Cymru 2025 fod 13 y cant wedi’i dorri oddi ar wariant y pen awdurdodau lleol ar ein trigolion hŷn dros y saith mlynedd diwethaf. Mae’n warth cenedlaethol a byddai’n costio £134 miliwn yn fwy y flwyddyn, erbyn 2020, i ddychwelyd at lefel gwariant y pen 2009. Mae Cyngor Sir Fynwy, fodd bynnag, yn arwain y ffordd gyda phrosiect Rhaglan, sy’n ailfodelu’r modd y mae gwasanaethau cymdeithasol yn cael eu darparu ar gyfer bobl hŷn, gan leihau gwastraff, gwella effeithlonrwydd, a galluogi mynediad gwell a haws. Mae ein gwelliant yn cydnabod gwerth y rhai sy’n gweithio yn ein diwydiant gofal, ar draws y sector iechyd a gofal cymdeithasol, ac yn tynnu sylw at aneffeithiolrwydd y diffyg gwasanaethau cydgysylltiedig ar y continwwm o ddydd i ddydd.

Daeth y Llywydd (Elin Jones) i’r Gadair.

The Llywydd (Elin Jones) took the Chair.