Welsh Language Standards Annual Compliance Report 2021/22


Police and Crime Commissioner’s Foreword

  1. Achievements
  2. Joint Welsh Language Strategy
  3. Compliance with the Welsh Language Standards

3.1 Complaints relating to Welsh Language Services

3.2 Posts Advertised in 2021/22

3.3 Training

3.4 Employees Welsh Language Skills

3.5 Monitoring and Overseeing Compliance with the Standards

  1. Compliance with Service Delivery Standards
  2. Compliance with Policy Making Standards
  3. Compliance with Operational Standards
  4. Challenges
  5. Contact us
  6. Appendix: Welsh Police Forces Agreed Level of Welsh Definitions


I am pleased to publish this Welsh Language Standards Annual Compliance Report that shows the progress made by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner during the past year. 

This is the second report for the joint Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Gwent Police Welsh Language Strategy 2021-2025.  It focuses on the reporting requirements contained within the Welsh language standards applied to me as Police and Crime Commissioner, as well as providing information on how we have worked towards the key pledges contained within the Strategy and our other achievements during the year. 

The Chief Constable and I remain fully committed to ensuring that members of the public can access, through the medium of Welsh, the services we provide on a day-to-day basis.  As a policing service, we continue to work to embrace the use of the Welsh language within the workplace and with our communities. 

Increasing our capability to provide bilingual services to the citizens of Gwent remains a priority.  We will continue to work together and with other partners to identify improved and innovative practices to support us in achieving the aims set out in the Strategy and compliance with our respective standards.

I hope that you enjoy reading about the progress we have made during this year and I invite you to get in touch if you have any comments or suggestions on how we can continue to improve the way we provide our services bilingually.

Jeff Cuthbert, B.Sc., MCIPD

Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent


Welsh Language Engagement

During 2021/22, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC) continued to focus on engagement with our Welsh speaking communities. 

Between October 2021 and January 2022, we ran our ‘Have Your Say on Policing Budget’ survey, which included a question on the precept.  This year, the office returned to a dual approach for engagement, with a series of face-to-face events across all council areas being complemented with an online survey.  The survey was conducted bilingually with a link to the Welsh language version proactively promoted through the Welsh Language networks in Gwent.  Unfortunately, the survey software used in this instance did not distinguish the language preference of respondents and we were unable to identify the number of Welsh language responses received.  This was highlighted by our Head of Communications and Engagement and a solution is being worked towards.

Since June 2020 the OPCC has maintained a separate Welsh language Facebook account Swyddfa Comisiynydd yr Heddlu a Throseddu Gwent | Facebook to ensure that followers can see published content in the language of their choice.  We have continued to promote our Welsh language social media presence and during the last year, we saw an increase of 66% in followers compared to 2020/21. While this is positive, the number of followers remains low, and we further explore ways to grow our reach.

We have also continued to provide the Welsh language version of our ebulletin to our subscribers.  Subscription numbers have remained stable during the year, and we will continue to raise awareness of this service to our communities (see section 4 below).


Work to rebuild the bilingual OPCC website commenced during 2020/21.  An improved administrative function now provides greater support to OPCC staff in uploading and publishing Welsh language content, thereby improving our website publication processes.  The transfer of content onto the new website was completed in the early part of 2021/22 with all pages now available bilingually.  Published documentation is also available in Welsh on request.

Welsh Language Performance Monitoring and Self-Assessment

During the year, the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Office (WLCO) conducted a review of the OPCC’s compliance with the Welsh Language Standards.  A supporting self-assessment form was completed based on the OPCC’s existing risk-based Welsh Language Action Plan and the outcomes of an internal audit undertaken last year. 

The Welsh language compliance exercise found the OPCC to be fully compliant across four of the nine areas reviewed:

  • Correspondence;
  • Publicity and advertising;
  • Social media; and
  • Corporate identity.

Feedback was very positive, with recognition of our processes and arrangements to support compliance across these areas.  Our bilingual social media presence was highlighted as superior in comparison to many other organisations.

Partial compliance was found in the ‘Website’ area.  This related to a functional issue with the new website which has since been resolved.

Three areas were found not to comply with the standards at the time of review:

  • Telephone - dealing with telephone calls in Welsh had previously been identified as a long-standing challenge for the OPCC. Guidance on the standards has been circulated to all OPCC staff, including a process for dealing with telephone calls.  We have continued to support Gwent Police regarding attempted recruitment of a Welsh-speaking Receptionist post, which would support and assist the OPCC in dealing with calls in Welsh.  This arrangement was supported by the WLCO due to the small size of the team and low turnover of staff in the OPCC.  However, as the recruitment processes was unsuccessful, arrangements have been made to improve the Welsh language skills within existing Reception staff to meet the requirements within the Standards.  We will continue to monitor progress of these arrangements.
  • Documents (published on the website) – two of the three documents sampled were found to be in English only. An update was provided in the meeting that the first document (the Estate Strategy) was being reviewed at that time and a Welsh language version would be published as soon as possible.  The other document was linked to a complaints process published on the Police and Crime Panel website.  Under the standards, this falls outside the responsibilities placed on the PCC and therefore is not applicable.
  • Forms (published on the website) – one of the three forms sampled was found to be in English only. The Subject Access Request form was found to be in English only.  The Welsh version has since been published.

One area (Recruitment) was out of scope due to no posts being advertised at the time of the review.

We were advised that effective processes and a methodical approach to the standards saw the OPCC performing better than many other public sector organisations.  The OPCC Welsh Language Standards Annual Compliance Report was also acknowledged as providing a positive representation of the organisation’s commitment to working towards a bilingual service.


The Welsh Language Strategy 2021-25 contains three key pledges:
1. Engage effectively with Welsh speakers and learners in order to shape the service we provide (see section 1 for information).
2. Increase the number of Welsh speakers and learners that we employ across both organisations (reported under section 3.4).
3. Collect data that we can use to improve the quality of our Welsh language services. Examples include data relating to public engagement through the medium of Welsh, complaints relating to how we deliver our Welsh language services (public and internal), staff requests for Welsh language documentation relating to their employment, and organisational Welsh language skills. These are reported on within the Annual Compliance Report.
To enable closer working relationships and maximise efficiencies, Gwent Police and the OPCC continue to share the posts of Welsh Language Policy Officer and Welsh Language Translator.


The following sections provide information regarding specific Welsh language standards the PCC is required to report against.  In doing so, we are demonstrating how the OPCC is complying with those standards on the PCC’s behalf.

3.1 Complaints relating to Welsh Language Services

During the reporting period, the OPCC did not receive any complaints regarding the provision of our Welsh language services, as set out by the Welsh language standards. This is consistent with the 2020/21 reporting period.

As part of our continuous engagement with our communities, we encourage members of the public to tell us if they think that we are not meeting our Welsh language standards obligations.  This helps us to continue to make improvements in service delivery and to communicate effectively with our communities.  Contact can be made by telephone or e-mail, face-to-face at public events or meetings, through our website, or by social media.  Further details are provided at the end of this document.

Our procedure for complaints relating to our compliance with the Welsh language standards is published on our website at Welsh Language Standards Compliance Complaints Procedure | Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner (pcc.police.uk), along with the accompanying Equality Impact Assessment, which is also available in Welsh. 

3.2 Posts Advertised in 2021/22

The OPCC advertised three vacancies during the reporting period.  All OPCC posts require Welsh desirable as a minimum.  This is also a requirement for the Chief Constable recruitment process, for which we have responsibility.

Recruitment processes consider use of positive action and targeted advertising to attract Welsh speaking applicants.  Our Communications and Engagement Team work with the joint Welsh Language Policy Officer to maximise opportunities to target our engagement towards our Welsh speaking communities and raise awareness of vacancies as they occur.

3.3 Training

Welsh Language Training

Gwent Police and the OPCC provide Welsh Language Awareness and Level 1 Skills training to all employees as a mandatory course. The training is delivered by the joint Welsh Language Policy Officer.

All current staff have undertaken the mandatory training session.  Welsh Language Awareness and Level 1 Skills training are incorporated into the induction training programme for all new staff.  Work is underway to implement refresher training for all officers and staff during 2022/23.

Opportunities are available for employees to enrol on internal Welsh for Adults courses that are provided by Coleg Gwent.  Employees attend during work time wherever possible.  During the reporting period, there were no learners within OPCC staff. 

We will continue to support and encourage staff who wish to enrol on Welsh courses appropriate to their existing skill-level, and to participate in the Welsh Speakers and Learners Network maintained by Gwent Police. 

3.4 Employees’ Welsh Language Skills

The following chart shows the level of Welsh language skills within the OPCC as recorded for the reporting year. 

We are pleased to have increased the basic level of Welsh skills available across the organisation and will continue to encourage and support staff to develop their capabilities and confidence to use Welsh.

Staff Welsh Language Skills*

Level 1: 15
Level 2: 1
Level 3: 0
Level 4: 1
Level 5: 0

Level 1: 15
Level 2: 1
Level 3: 0
Level 4: 1
Level 5: 0

Level 1: 16
Level 2: 1
Level 3: 0
Level 4: 1
Level 5: 0

*Excluding the PCC

3.5. Monitoring and Overseeing Compliance with the Standards

The Chief Executive has responsibility for monitoring and overseeing compliance with the PCC’s Welsh language standards.  Internal scrutiny is undertaken at Management Meetings to enable the PCC to retain oversight of compliance and address any issues.

The PCC also has a duty to monitor and scrutinise Gwent Police’s compliance with the Welsh language standards imposed on the Chief Constable.  OPCC staff participate in Gwent Police’s Welsh Language Meeting and the People Strategy Board to support the PCC in undertaking this duty.

The PCC’s public-facing Strategy and Performance Board receives Gwent Police’s Welsh Language Standards Annual Compliance Reports. These are published on our website as part of our governance arrangements.  The Gwent Police and Crime Panel receives the OPCC’s report to provide assurance of our compliance with the Welsh Language Standards, which is also published on our website.


The following section contains information regarding our compliance with the Service Delivery Standards the PCC is required to report against.  During the year, we have complied with each of the requirements as highlighted in this section.

a) Communications with the public

Guidance for all staff has been published on Gwent Police’s intranet “The Beat / Y Bît”, which OPCC staff also have access to. This guidance clearly and simply explains the requirements of the Service Delivery Standards for both organisations. 

b) Website and social media

Our website provides an introductory splash page to encourage and allow Welsh speakers to select their language of choice before accessing other website pages. We have also improved our Welsh medium social media presence across our accounts to provide better engagement with our communities. 

Our weekly e-bulletin is available in Welsh or English, depending on the subscriber’s language preference.  To the end of March 2022, 20 people had subscribed to the Welsh version, an increase of six subscribers compared to the same period last year. 

We continue to promote the e-bulletin to all our communities as an easy way to keep updated on our work – further information is available on our website at  E-bulletin | Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner (pcc.police.uk)/

During 2022/23, we will continue to develop our Welsh language social media presence on Facebook to further enhance the reach of our engagement with our communities.

c) Grants

All information published relating to funding opportunities is provided in Welsh and English.  Where an application is received in Welsh, we will correspond with the applicant in Welsh and provide a translation service at any supporting meetings. 

During the reporting year, we did not receive any funding applications in Welsh.  Under the new Strategy, we will review our promotion of funding opportunities to raise awareness that we welcome applications in Welsh.

d) Procurement

No requests for tenders or contracts have been issued in Welsh, and none have been received in Welsh during this reporting period.

For relevant contracts (where the subject matter of the contract suggests it should be in Welsh) tender documents will be published in Welsh. The tender document states that “The Commissioner welcomes tender responses in Welsh” and the Welsh Language Checklist has been embedded within the tender process to ensure due consideration is given to the Welsh language at all stages.

Access to professional translation services ensures the content of Welsh language submissions is accurately reflected, and the evaluation process will run parallel to the evaluation of submissions in English (if relevant). The same closing date will apply for submissions in Welsh and English and simultaneous translation services will be offered and arranged for relevant contracts should an organisation wish to complete an interview in Welsh.

All tenders are advertised in Welsh and English.


We have met our Policy Making Standards by using our Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) process to identify and address any impacts on the Welsh language.  EIAs are a compulsory part of our policy-making procedure, guiding policy writers and decision makers in considering adverse or positive impact on people that share protected characteristics as defined by the Equality Act 2010.

Although Welsh language is not a protected characteristic under Section 4 of the Equality Act 2010, we have amended our EIA template to include a number of questions so that any impact on our treatment of the Welsh language in relation to English, or opportunities for people to use the Welsh language, are identified.   All new policies, and reviews of existing policies are subject to an EIA and support from the Welsh language policy lead and joint Welsh Language Policy Officer is available to any colleague completing an EIA.

While the standards do not specifically require us to undertake assessment in this way, using our EIA process provides us with an efficient and comprehensive approach to assessing the impact of our activities in respect of the Welsh language.

We have published a policy on awarding grants that sets out how we will consider the Welsh language in our funding decisions.  This is available on our website at Grant-Funding Policy and Procedure | Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner (pcc.police.uk)


The following section contains information regarding our compliance with the Operational Standards the PCC is required to report against.  During the year, we have complied with each of the requirements as highlighted in this section. 

a) Staff support

Comprehensive Welsh Language Standards guidance for staff is published on the Gwent Police intranet ‘The Beat / Y Bît’ on the ‘Welsh Language’ page, which our staff also has access to. The page also includes support and resources for staff wishing to practice their Welsh language skills or consider Welsh medium education for their children.

Welsh templates for out of office responses and personal signatures are provided, alongside virtual badges that colleagues can add to their emails indicating that they are either learning Welsh or are a Welsh speaker. All known Welsh speakers and learners within the organisation have been issued with an appropriate badge or lanyard to wear.

b) Welsh language posts

All vacancies state ‘Welsh desirable’ as standard, unless a post is assessed as ‘Welsh essential’ or requiring skills to be acquired by the successful candidate.  The process to assess changes to language requirements will be supported by the Recruitment Team in Gwent Police’s People Services Department.

Externally, posts are advertised in Welsh as well as English, and Welsh versions of information relating to that post, as well as application forms are published. All applications for new posts require candidates to indicate their level of Welsh ability, and, whether they would like to complete the recruitment process in Welsh.

c) Signage

All new or replacement signage is now produced bilingually across the police estate with the Welsh positioned so that it is likely to be read first.

d) Training courses provided in Welsh

OPCC staff have not made any requests to receive training through the medium of Welsh during the reporting period.


The OPCC does not have any outstanding challenges lodged with the Welsh Language Commissioner, albeit we will continue to focus on the areas of partial compliance identified in their review, specifically around telephony services. 

We will continue to engage with the Welsh Language Commissioner’s Office regarding any identified good practice or emerging challenges as we continue to improve and enhance the delivery of a bilingual service to the citizens of Gwent.


For further information on how we comply with Welsh Language Standards, or to provide feedback on how we can engage more effectively with Welsh speakers and learners in our communities, please contact:

The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner
Gwent Police Headquarters
Llantarnam Park Way
NP44 3FW

E-mail: Commissioner@gwent.pnn.police.uk

Phone: 01633 642200

Twitter: @gwentpcc

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/gwentpcc/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gwentpcc/

We welcome correspondence in Welsh and English - we will respond equally to both and will reply in your language of choice without delay.


Welsh police forces agreed level of Welsh definitions (verbal skills only):

Level 1

Can say place names, personal names, can use greetings appropriately in person or on the telephone, can open and close meetings bilingually.

Level 2

Can understand a basic conversation and can convey simple information, can respond to simple requests, can understand requests for assistance, can use Welsh to transfer telephone calls, can introduce oneself and others.

Level 3

Can take and pass on messages likely to require attention during a working day, can converse partly in Welsh but turns to English in discussion and to give detailed information, can describe people and locations, can respond to general enquiries over the telephone and face to face, can take details or make a note from a Welsh conversation.

Level 4

Can contribute effectively in meetings within own area of work, can argue a case for or against an idea, can converse in Welsh in most situations but turns to English when using policing or technical terminology, can deal with enquiries effectively, can understand dialect differences, can chair a meeting and respond to questions in Welsh, can describe a situation or event in Welsh.

Level 5

Can interview applicants for Welsh speaking posts and assess their suitability, can deal effectively with complex enquiries or confrontations in Welsh, can interview and question in Welsh in the course of an investigation, can deal with complex or sensitive enquiries, complaints and hostile questions to the extent of their specialist knowledge, can deliver presentations in Welsh.