MA publishes Languages Policy

Patrick Steel, 31.07.2018
Policy recognises Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, Irish, Ulster-Scots, and British Sign Language
The Museums Association (MA) has published its Languages Policy, which recognises Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, Irish, Ulster-Scots, and British Sign Language, alongside the UK’s official language, English.

The aim of the policy is to provide guidance for the MA in the use of languages other than English at its events, and in relation to any of the association’s policy documents.

“Whilst English is an official language in all four nations of the UK and is therefore the main working language of the MA, the body is respectful of the fact that its membership also speaks a number of different languages that are both indigenous to the British Isles as well as others,” the policy states.

“Though the MA operates its day to day activities through the medium of English, there are instances when the body has supported other languages at its events, as well as the translation of some of its key policy documents into other languages.

“Within the UK, this has included the translation of both Museums Change Lives and the Code of Ethics into Welsh with the support of MALD (the Welsh Government’s sponsorship division for Museums, Archives and Libraries) and the use of British Sign Language, Welsh and other languages at events and conference."

Building on the MA’s Nations Policy, the Languages Policy will be regularly reviewed by the Nations Committee of the MA’s board.

"I’m really pleased that the MA’s Nations Committee has developed this Languages Policy," says Sharon Heal, the MA's director. 

"The MA operates across all four nations of the UK and it is vital that we recognise the cultural and political differences between the nations. 

"We strive to deliver our services equitably and to be inclusive as an organisation and that means recognising the different languages that are spoken in the UK and providing translation where appropriate."

Links and downloads

Museums Association Languages Policy (pdf)