Plaid Cymru has responded to the news brought to light by Nation.Cymru that OVO Energy is to scrap its Welsh Language telephone service and Welsh Language bills, as well as advising customers to use Google Translate to read their bills in Welsh.

OVO Energy merged with Swalec in 2013, and took on its Welsh Language service at the time.

Responding to the news, Heledd Fychan MS, Plaid Cymru’s spokesperson for the Welsh Language and Culture, said:


“This decision by OVO, and the actions that they have taken, show a severe lack of cultural and linguistic awareness. It is tone deaf and sets the cause of the language back decades.

“Despite having a Welsh Language Commissioner and Welsh language rights, this company thinks that it is ok to treat Welsh speakers like second class citizens.


“It is absolutely outrageous – not to mention offensive – that they are suggesting customers put their bills through Google Translate in order to read them in Welsh.


“The Welsh Language Commissioner must step in to make sure that this essential utility company is aware of its duties to people in Wales.”

Showing 2 reactions

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  • Gail Stevens
    commented 2024-03-20 17:47:47 +0000
    Although I am not a fluent Welsh speaker, I am extremely disappointed with the decision that OVO energy have decided to disperse with the Welsh language in their organisation. As a customer of OVO, I am seriously considering changing my utilities provider in support against their proposed actions. Over many years, most larger companies have accepted the changes to support the Welsh language, and as millions of pounds have been invested on bi-ligual traffic/road signs/documents and many other requirements to support the system, including financial costs for staff to attend basic Welsh lessons, as many are not Welsh speakers. We should not now allow these companies to withdraw to save on financial costs, when others are supporting it. We need to work together in Wales and not have these divisions, so I believe the Welsh Government should intervene, as this may lead to many more companies following suit, and where would that lead. So much has been spent on the project, and to go back in time would be unacceptable at this point. As I said before, I am not a Welsh speaker and I must admit that over the years, I have been also felt frustrated with the changes myself, especially as the majority of the population in south wales are non Welsh speakers, and I have often thought that all the expense of the changes could have been used towards more important issues for the people of Wales, but as we have adapted and learned to accept the changes and policies, it should not now be reversed by individual companies who wish to save on finances (and I doubt that these savings would be beneficial to their customers) It was the Welsh governments decision to make these changes many years ago, so why don’t they do something about it to support their decisions made in the past before it’s too late, and before many other companies do the same as OVO.
    I hope many people will voice their concerns about this.
    Kindest regards
    Gail Stevens
  • Brooke Webb
    published this page in News 2024-02-22 16:15:52 +0000

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