Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru

Yn ôl i Chwilio

Y Cyfarfod Llawn

Plenary

12/07/2017

Cyfarfu’r Cynulliad am 13:30 gyda’r Llywydd (Elin Jones) yn y Gadair.

The Assembly met at 13:30 with the Llywydd (Elin Jones) in the Chair.

1. 1. Cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg
1. 1. Questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education

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.

Yr eitem gyntaf ar ein hagenda ni’r prynhawn yma yw’r cwestiynau i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg. A’r cwestiwn cyntaf, Janet Finch-Saunders.

The first item on our agenda this afternoon is questions to the Cabinet Secretary for Education. And the first question, Janet Finch-Saunders.

Ysgolion Gwledig

Rural Schools

1. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am gefnogaeth Llywodraeth Cymru i ysgolion gwledig? OAQ(5)0158(EDU)

1. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on Welsh Government support for rural schools? OAQ(5)0158(EDU)

Thank you, Janet. Rural schools benefit from the full range of policies we have in place across Wales. In addition, since taking office, I have introduced a new small and rural schools grant worth £2.5 million a year, and, more recently, commenced consultation introducing a presumption against the closure of rural schools.

Diolch, Janet. Mae ysgolion gwledig yn elwa ar yr ystod lawn o bolisïau sydd gennym ar waith ledled Cymru. Yn ogystal, ers ymgymryd â’r swydd, rwyf wedi cyflwyno grant newydd ar gyfer ysgolion bach a gwledig sy’n werth £2.5 miliwn y flwyddyn, ac yn fwy diweddar, rwyf wedi cychwyn ymgynghoriad gan gyflwyno rhagdybiaeth yn erbyn cau ysgolion gwledig.

Thank you. As part of your twenty-first century schools programme, and on the promise of an amalgamation with Ysgol Dolgarrog, two rural schools in the Conwy valley in my constituency—Tal-y-bont and Ysgol Trefriw—have been closed for a year now. Yes, they were closed with the support of the Welsh Labour Government and Conwy County Borough Council at that time. The new school site at Dolgarrog is still awaiting any form of redevelopment. Can you say, in order for me to update my constituents, when the redevelopment phase at this site will start?

Diolch. Fel rhan o’ch rhaglen ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain, ac yn unol â’r addewid y caent uno gydag Ysgol Dolgarrog, mae dwy ysgol wledig yn nyffryn Conwy yn fy etholaeth—Tal y Bont ac Ysgol Trefriw—wedi bod ar gau ers blwyddyn bellach. Do, cawsant eu cau gyda chefnogaeth Llywodraeth Lafur Cymru a Chyngor Bwrdeistref Sirol Conwy ar y pryd. Mae safle’r ysgol newydd yn Nolgarrog yn dal i aros am unrhyw fath o ailddatblygu. A allwch ddweud, fel y gallaf roi’r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf i fy etholwyr, pryd y bydd y cyfnod o ailddatblygu’r safle hwn yn dechrau?

Thank you for your question. It’s important for Members to be aware that any changes to the schools organisation code will not be applied retrospectively, and I want to be very clear about that. The school site that the Member talks about, it really is a matter for the local council to pursue the building of that new facility. But I will write to the Member, having made enquiries with my twenty-first century schools team, as to the state of the progress on that particular project. We have the biggest school and college building programme since the 1960s. There are resources available and I am keen that those resources are put to good use and we provide the first-class educational settings in Wales that our children deserve.

Diolch am eich cwestiwn. Mae’n bwysig fod yr Aelodau’n ymwybodol na fydd unrhyw newidiadau i’r cod trefniadaeth ysgolion yn cael eu rhoi ar waith yn ôl-weithredol, ac rwy’n awyddus i fod yn glir iawn ynglŷn â hynny. O ran safle’r ysgol y cyfeiriodd yr Aelod ati, mewn gwirionedd, mater i’r cyngor lleol yw mynd ar drywydd y broses o adeiladau’r cyfleuster newydd hwnnw. Ond byddaf yn ysgrifennu at yr Aelod, ar ôl gwneud ymholiadau gyda fy nhîm ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain, ynglŷn â chynnydd y prosiect penodol hwnnw. Mae gennym y rhaglen fwyaf ar gyfer adeiladu ysgolion a cholegau ers y 1960au. Mae adnoddau ar gael, ac rwy’n awyddus i weld defnydd da’n cael ei wneud o’r adnoddau hynny, a’n bod yn darparu’r lleoliadau addysg o’r radd flaenaf yng Nghymru y mae ein plant yn eu haeddu.

Ac, wrth gwrs, mae hyfywedd ysgolion gwledig yn dibynnu cymaint ar eu gallu nhw i ddarparu cwricwlwm cyfan, a gwneud hynny i’r safon addysgiadol orau er mwyn ennill hyder y rhieni a’r gymuned yn ehangach na hynny. A fedrwch chi, felly, Ysgrifennydd Cabinet, ychwanegu at yr hyn rydych chi eisoes wedi ei ddweud ynglŷn â gwneud yn siŵr bod ysgolion gwledig yn gysylltiedig drwy fand-eang o’r radd flaenaf, i wneud yn siŵr bod pob un o’r ysgolion hynny, felly, wedi ei rwydweithio ac yn gallu darparu’r dechnoleg fwyaf diweddar i ddisgyblion er mwyn sicrhau bod yna ddyfodol ffyniannus i ysgolion gwledig?

Of course, the viability of rural schools depends so much on their ability to provide a comprehensive curriculum, and to do that to the highest possible educational standards in order to gain the confidence of parents and the wider community. So, Cabinet Secretary, can you add to what you’ve already said about ensuring that rural schools are connected through the highest quality broadband, to ensure that each of those schools is properly networked and can provide the most up-to-date technology for pupils in order to ensure that there is a prosperous future for rural schools?

Thank you, Simon. You’re absolutely right—the first consideration regarding the future of a school should be the educational viability of that school. Simply a school remaining open is not good enough. The education that that school provides has to be a first-class educational opportunity for those children. I don’t want children to have any less of an opportunity because they attend a small, rural school than if they attended any other school in Wales. Information and communication technology does give us an opportunity to address some of the logistical disadvantages that sometimes small, rural schools can face, as well as the professional isolation that sometimes the teachers in those schools can face.

You’ll be aware that we have recently ensured that all schools—although there continues to be difficulty with one school in the Ceredigion constituency, thanks to difficulties with the contractor—are now up to the Government’s target for all speeds, and we’ve announced an additional £5 million, which individual local authorities bid into, to update even to higher speeds for other schools. But, as part of the rural schools grant, one of the key areas that we would like to see councils use that grant for is to encourage innovation, which would include virtual classrooms and investment in ICT and innovative ways of delivering teaching via a virtual network.

Diolch yn fawr, Simon. Rydych yn llygad eich lle—hyfywedd addysgol ysgol a ddylai fod yn ystyriaeth gyntaf mewn perthynas â dyfodol yr ysgol honno. Nid yw cadw ysgol ar agor yn ddigon da. Mae’n rhaid i’r addysg y mae’r ysgol honno yn ei darparu fod yn gyfle addysgol o’r radd flaenaf i’r plant hynny. Nid wyf am i blant gael llai o gyfle am eu bod yn mynychu ysgol fach wledig na phe baent yn mynychu unrhyw ysgol arall yng Nghymru. Mae technoleg gwybodaeth a chyfathrebu yn rhoi cyfle i ni fynd i’r afael â rhai o’r anfanteision logistaidd y gall ysgolion bach gwledig eu hwynebu weithiau, yn ogystal â’r arwahanrwydd proffesiynol y gallai’r athrawon yn yr ysgolion hynny ei wynebu o bryd i’w gilydd.

Fe fyddwch yn gwybod ein bod wedi sicrhau yn ddiweddar fod pob ysgol—er bod problemau o hyd gydag un ysgol yn etholaeth Ceredigion, oherwydd anawsterau gyda’r contractwr—bellach wedi cyrraedd targed y Llywodraeth ar gyfer pob cyflymder, ac rydym wedi cyhoeddi £5 miliwn ychwanegol y mae awdurdodau lleol unigol yn rhoi cynigion am gyfran ohono, i ddiweddaru i gyflymderau hyd yn oed yn uwch ar gyfer ysgolion eraill. Ond fel rhan o’r grant ysgolion gwledig, un o’r meysydd allweddol y byddem yn hoffi gweld y cynghorau’n defnyddio’r grant hwnnw ar ei gyfer yw annog arloesedd, a fyddai’n cynnwys ystafelloedd dosbarth rhithwir a buddsoddi mewn TGCh a ffyrdd arloesol o addysgu drwy rwydwaith rhithwir.

Grantiau Datblygu Disgyblion yn Etholaeth Ogwr

Pupil Development Grants in the Ogmore Constituency

2. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet roi’r wybodaeth ddiweddaraf am effaith y grantiau datblygu disgyblion yn etholaeth Ogwr? OAQ(5)0160(EDU)

2. Will the Cabinet Secretary provide an update on the impact of pupil development grants in the Ogmore constituency? OAQ(5)0160(EDU)

I would be delighted to, Huw, because, in Ogmore, 36.5 per cent of pupils on free school meals achieved level 2 inclusive at key stage 4, and that is a 12 per cent increase since the introduction of the PDG. Three quarters of free-school-meal learners achieved the core subject indicator for key stage 2, and that is up from 62 per cent in 2012, an increase of 14 percentage points. The teachers and those students should be congratulated.

Byddwn wrth fy modd, Huw, oherwydd, yn Ogwr, mae 36.5 y cant o’r disgyblion sy’n cael prydau ysgol am ddim wedi cyrraedd trothwy cynwysedig lefel 2 yng nghyfnod allweddol 4, ac mae hynny’n gynnydd o 12 y cant ers cyflwyno’r grantiau datblygu disgyblion. Cyflawnodd tri chwarter y dysgwyr sy’n cael prydau ysgol am ddim y dangosydd pynciau craidd ar gyfer cyfnod allweddol 2, ac mae hynny’n uwch na’r 62 y cant yn 2012, sef cynnydd o 14 pwynt canran. Dylid llongyfarch yr athrawon a’r myfyrwyr hynny.

Indeed, and I extend my congratulations to all those in the schools who work with children, with significant advantages, because of the disadvantage that they might face, but also the teaching staff and support staff who work with them to produce those excellent results. And there’s no doubt that the pupil development grant is an invaluable resource to financially assist schools in delivering support to those children from deprived families, with free school meals, of course, being the trigger to eligibility. But, what I want to ask is about those families that are not eligible for free school meals but could be experiencing major disruption in their lives, such as parents divorcing, the bereavement of a parent, chronic illness in a family, job loss within a family, et cetera, and that emotional disturbance that can really impact on a child’s educational needs, as well as social welfare. There is surely a need as well to ensure that these families are also given appropriate support. So, could I ask the Minister to suggest in which ways we can help these families to see that they are supported, if not by the pupil development grant, then by some other mechanisms to ensure that these pupils also have the chance to succeed?

Yn wir, ac rwy’n llongyfarch pawb yn yr ysgolion sy’n gweithio gyda phlant, gyda manteision sylweddol, oherwydd yr anfantais y gallent ei hwynebu, ond hefyd y staff addysgu a’r staff cymorth sy’n gweithio gyda hwy i gynhyrchu’r canlyniadau ardderchog hyn. Ac nid oes unrhyw amheuaeth fod y grant datblygu disgyblion yn adnodd hynod werthfawr sy’n rhoi cymorth ariannol i ysgolion gefnogi plant o deuluoedd difreintiedig, gyda phrydau ysgol am ddim, wrth gwrs, yn faen prawf ar gyfer cymhwysedd. Ond mae’r hyn rwyf am ofyn yn ymwneud â’r teuluoedd hynny nad ydynt yn gymwys i gael prydau ysgol am ddim ond sydd efallai’n wynebu cryn drafferthion yn eu bywydau, fel rhieni’n ysgaru, colli rhiant, salwch cronig yn y teulu, colli swydd yn y teulu ac ati, a’r aflonyddwch emosiynol a all effeithio’n sylweddol ar anghenion addysgol plentyn, yn ogystal â lles cymdeithasol. Yn sicr, mae angen sicrhau bod y teuluoedd hyn yn cael cymorth priodol hefyd. Felly, a gaf fi ofyn i’r Gweinidog awgrymu ym mha ffyrdd y gallwn helpu’r teuluoedd hyn i sicrhau eu bod yn cael eu cefnogi, os nad drwy’r grant datblygu disgyblion, yna drwy fecanweithiau eraill i sicrhau bod y disgyblion hyn hefyd yn cael cyfle i lwyddo?

Presiding Officer, can I thank the Member for that question? The Member is absolutely right. Unless we give due recognition to the issue of a child’s well-being, then they will not reap the benefits of the educational opportunities that we provide for them. As the Member will be aware, it is my intention to publish an updated version of ‘Qualified for Life’, and I hope that he will be pleased to see recognition of the issue of well-being when that document is published later on this year.

With regard to specific action that I am taking, I am working very closely with my colleague, the Cabinet Secretary for children. We are joint funding a series of pilots around ACEs, and the impact that adverse childhood experiences can have on a child’s well-being. And, in conjunction with the Cabinet Secretary for health, we’re about to launch some pilots with regard to how better we can support schools by ensuring that health service staff with expertise in child and adolescent mental health are more prevalent in our schools. And we hope to announce details of that pilot shortly.

Llywydd, a gaf fi ddiolch i’r Aelod am ei gwestiwn? Mae’r Aelod yn llygad ei le. Oni bai ein bod yn rhoi cydnabyddiaeth haeddiannol i lesiant plentyn, ni fyddant yn elwa ar y cyfleoedd addysgol a ddarparwn ar eu cyfer. Fel y gŵyr yr Aelod, rwy’n bwriadu cyhoeddi fersiwn wedi’i diweddaru o ‘Cymwys am Oes’, a gobeithiaf y bydd yn falch o weld mater llesiant yn cael ei gydnabod pan fydd y ddogfen yn cael ei chyhoeddi yn ddiweddarach eleni.

O ran y camau penodol rwyf yn eu cymryd, rwy’n gweithio’n agos iawn gyda fy nghyd-Aelod, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros blant. Rydym yn cydariannu cyfres o gynlluniau peilot sy’n ymwneud â phrofiadau niweidiol yn ystod plentyndod, a’r effaith y gall profiadau niweidiol yn ystod plentyndod eu cael ar lesiant plentyn. Ac ar y cyd ag Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros iechyd, rydym ar fin lansio cynlluniau peilot sy’n ymwneud â sut y gallwn gefnogi ysgolion yn well drwy sicrhau bod staff gwasanaeth iechyd sy’n arbenigo ym maes iechyd meddwl plant a’r glasoed yn fwy cyffredin yn ein hysgolion. Ac rydym yn gobeithio cyhoeddi manylion y cynllun peilot hwnnw cyn bo hir.

As you may know, Cabinet Secretary, there’s a new Welsh-medium school in Bettws, a very deprived part of the Ogmore constituency. I’m wondering how clear it is that the PDG can be used to improve Welsh learning skills, if you like, for pupils from English-speaking backgrounds, which actually makes it easier for those families to choose Welsh-medium education for their children, helping them to become bilingual and giving them an advantage in the workplace in later life.

Fel y gwyddoch, efallai, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, mae ysgol cyfrwng Cymraeg newydd ym Metws, rhan ddifreintiedig iawn o etholaeth Ogwr. Tybed pa mor glir yw hi y gellir defnyddio’r grant datblygu disgyblion i wella sgiliau dysgu Cymraeg, os mynnwch, ar gyfer disgyblion o gefndiroedd Saesneg eu hiaith, sydd mewn gwirionedd yn ei gwneud yn haws i’r teuluoedd hynny ddewis addysg cyfrwng Cymraeg ar gyfer eu plant, gan eu helpu i ddod yn ddwyieithog a rhoi mantais iddynt yn y gweithle yn ddiweddarach mewn bywyd.

Thank you, Suzy. The Welsh Government produces quite comprehensive guidance to schools on how they can use the PDG. That includes reference to the Sutton Trust toolkit, which is an invaluable resource, evidence and research-based, about what actually works in these circumstances. But each individual school is responsible for deciding on how best to use the PDG allocation because they know their children and their families and their community best. As the Minister said yesterday, we want all children, regardless of their background, to have the opportunity to become bilingual citizens of our nation, and I would expect that, in the school that you spoke of, their PDG, I’m sure, will be used to that effect.

Diolch, Suzy. Mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn cyhoeddi canllawiau eithaf cynhwysfawr i ysgolion ar sut y gallant ddefnyddio’r grant datblygu disgyblion. Mae hynny’n cynnwys cyfeiriad at becyn cymorth Ymddiriedolaeth Sutton, sy’n adnodd hynod o werthfawr, ac sy’n seiliedig ar dystiolaeth ac ymchwil ynglŷn â’r hyn sy’n gweithio yn yr amgylchiadau hyn mewn gwirionedd. Ond mae pob ysgol unigol yn gyfrifol am benderfynu ar y ffordd orau o ddefnyddio arian y grant datblygu disgyblion, gan mai hwy sy’n adnabod eu plant a’u teuluoedd a’u cymuned orau. Fel y dywedodd y Gweinidog ddoe, rydym am i bob plentyn, beth bynnag fo’u cefndiroedd, gael cyfle i fod yn ddinasyddion dwyieithog yn ein cenedl, ac rwy’n disgwyl y bydd yr ysgol y sonioch amdani yn defnyddio eu grant datblygu disgyblion i’r perwyl hwnnw, rwy’n siŵr.

Cabinet Secretary, it’s good news to see that the pupil development grant is having an impact on improving the education chances of our most deprived children and young people. However, the children and young people in Ogmore are about to have their education decimated as budget cuts take hold. Bridgend’s local education authority comprehensive schools could see up to five teaching posts cut as a result of Bridgend shortfalls, which, for the current financial year, is over £300 per pupil below the Welsh average. Cabinet Secretary, how will this affect the pupil development grant?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, mae’n newyddion da gweld bod y grant datblygu disgyblion yn cael effaith ar wella cyfleoedd addysg ein plant a’n pobl ifanc mwyaf difreintiedig. Fodd bynnag, mae addysg y plant a’r bobl ifanc yn Ogwr ar fin cael ei dinistrio wrth i’r toriadau i’r gyllideb ddod i’r amlwg. Gallai ysgolion cyfun awdurdod addysg lleol Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr golli hyd at bum swydd athro o ganlyniad i ddiffygion Pen-y-bont ar Ogwr, sydd dros £300 y disgybl yn is na chyfartaledd Cymru ar gyfer y flwyddyn ariannol bresennol. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, sut y bydd hyn yn effeithio ar y grant datblygu disgyblion?

It will have no effect on the pupil development grant, because the pupil development grant is paid directly from Welsh Government to individual schools on the basis of how many pupils they have on free school meals.

Ni fydd yn cael unrhyw effaith ar y grant datblygu disgyblion, gan fod y grant datblygu disgyblion yn cael ei dalu’n uniongyrchol gan Lywodraeth Cymru i ysgolion unigol ar sail faint o’u disgyblion sy’n cael prydau ysgol am ddim.

Cwestiynau Heb Rybudd gan Lefarwyr y Pleidiau

Questions Without Notice from Party Spokespeople

Cwestiynau’r llefarwyr nawr, a llefarydd y Ceidwadwyr, Darren Millar.

Questions now from the party spokespeople. Welsh Conservative spokesperson, Darren Millar.

Cabinet Secretary, just a few weeks ago, Labour’s First Minister was telling people to vote Labour to scrap tuition fees, but yesterday, in a betrayal of the students and Labour voters across Wales, you, on behalf of his Government, announced a hike in the cap on tuition fees paid by Welsh students. And I think that it goes to show that Labour cannot be trusted to deliver on the promises that it makes to the people of Wales. Last year, in the National Assembly for Wales elections, you made a promise to cut early year class sizes to 25 or under. Can you tell the Assembly today what progress you’re making against that promise?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ychydig wythnosau yn ôl yn unig, roedd Prif Weinidog Llafur Cymru yn dweud wrth bobl am bleidleisio dros y Blaid Lafur er mwyn cael gwared ar ffioedd dysgu, ond ddoe, gan fradychu’r myfyrwyr a phleidleiswyr Llafur ledled Cymru, fe gyhoeddoch, ar ran ei Lywodraeth ef, gynnydd yn y cap ar ffioedd dysgu a delir gan fyfyrwyr yng Nghymru. A chredaf fod hynny’n dangos na ellir ymddiried yn y Blaid Lafur i gyflawni’r addewidion y mae wedi’u gwneud i bobl Cymru. Y llynedd, yn etholiadau Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru, gwnaethoch addewid i dorri maint dosbarthiadau’r blynyddoedd cynnar i 25 neu lai. A allwch ddweud wrth y Cynulliad heddiw pa gynnydd rydych yn ei wneud ar yr addewid hwnnw?

First of all, as I said, I am not an expert on the Labour Party’s manifesto for the Assembly elections of last year, but what I am aware of is that what that manifesto commitment said was that Welsh students would be better off than their English counterparts. The fact that this Government will introduce a grant scheme that will see our poorest students entitled to a grant equivalent to the living wage is something that we can be proud of.

I noticed this morning in a speech, Justine Greening said that there were only two ways forward with regard to university fees: it was either fees or it was a cap. I would urge Justine Greening to pick up the phone and understand how a Government can do things differently, because that’s what we’re doing here in Wales.

With regard to class sizes, the Member will be aware that we are currently introducing a class-size reduction grant. We are working with the local authorities about how best we can utilise that money, focusing on our youngest pupils, our most deprived pupils and on those children for whom Welsh or English is not their first language, because that’s where the money will make the biggest difference.

Yn gyntaf oll, fel y dywedais, nid wyf yn arbenigwr ar faniffesto’r Blaid Lafur ar gyfer etholiadau’r Cynulliad y llynedd, ond rwy’n ymwybodol fod yr ymrwymiad maniffesto yn dweud y byddai myfyrwyr Cymru yn well eu byd na’u cymheiriaid yn Lloegr. Mae’r ffaith y bydd y Llywodraeth hon yn cyflwyno cynllun grant a fydd yn sicrhau bod ein myfyrwyr tlotaf yn gymwys i gael grant sy’n cyfateb i’r cyflog byw yn rhywbeth y gallwn fod yn falch ohono.

Sylwais fod Justine Greening wedi dweud mewn araith y bore yma mai dwy ffordd ymlaen yn unig sydd o ran ffioedd prifysgol: naill ai ffioedd neu gap. Byddwn yn annog Justine Greening i godi’r ffôn a dysgu sut y gall Llywodraeth wneud pethau’n wahanol, gan mai dyna beth rydym yn ei wneud yma yng Nghymru.

O ran maint dosbarthiadau, bydd yr Aelod yn ymwybodol ein bod yn cyflwyno grant lleihau maint dosbarthiadau ar hyn o bryd. Rydym yn gweithio gyda’r awdurdodau lleol ar y ffordd orau i ddefnyddio’r arian hwnnw, gan ganolbwyntio ar ein disgyblion ieuengaf, ein disgyblion mwyaf difreintiedig ac ar y plant nad yw Cymraeg neu Saesneg yn iaith gyntaf iddynt gan mai dyna ble bydd yr arian yn gwneud y gwahaniaeth mwyaf.

I think the voters will make their minds up as to whether the Labour Party has broken its manifesto pledges from just a few weeks ago in a country where it’s able to actually implement those pledges. Can I just ask for some clarification? One of the things that you made a big fuss about during your election campaign for the National Assembly for Wales elections last year was this pledge of reducing class sizes to under 25, but, of course, you’ve spent the past 12 months watering that pledge down so that it actually means nothing of the sort, haven’t you? What you’ve talked about is reducing ratios of adult staff to pupils in classrooms rather than actually delivering on your pledge, and that is because, of course, you’ve got a huge mountain to climb. As of January 2016, there were almost 80,000 children in early years classes with more than 25 pupils—three out of every four pupils in those classes. We know also that there are over 25,000 pupils across Wales who are in class sizes of 30 or more. You promised to deliver class sizes of under 25. You’ve watered it down so that it’s actually a meaningless promise. So, we’ve got broken pledges on tuition fees from Labour and broken promises from you on class sizes. So, given that that promise is really dead in the water because you’re not going to deliver 25 or fewer in those classrooms, will you now listen to the chorus of experts who have spoken up, condemned that policy and suggested that you spend the £36 million that you earmarked for it on other things in the education system instead, where you’ll get better a bang for your buck?

Credaf y bydd y pleidleiswyr yn penderfynu a yw’r Blaid Lafur wedi torri ei haddewidion maniffesto a wnaed ychydig wythnosau yn ôl yn unig mewn gwlad lle mae modd iddi roi’r addewidion hynny ar waith mewn gwirionedd. A gaf fi ofyn am rywfaint o eglurhad? Un o’r pethau y gwnaethoch fôr a mynydd yn eu cylch yn ystod eich ymgyrch etholiadol ar gyfer etholiadau Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru y llynedd oedd yr addewid y byddech yn lleihau maint dosbarthiadau i lai na 25, ond wrth gwrs, rydych wedi treulio’r 12 mis diwethaf yn glastwreiddio’r addewid hwnnw, onid ydych, fel nad yw’n golygu unrhyw beth o’r fath mewn gwirionedd. Yr hyn rydych wedi siarad yn ei gylch yw lleihau’r gymhareb o staff sy’n oedolion i ddisgyblion mewn ystafelloedd dosbarth yn hytrach na chadw at eich addewid, a hynny, wrth gwrs, am fod gennych fynydd anferth i’w ddringo. Ym mis Ionawr 2016, roedd bron i 80,000 o blant mewn dosbarthiadau blynyddoedd cynnar gyda dros 25 o ddisgyblion—tri o bob pedwar disgybl yn y dosbarthiadau hynny. Gwyddom hefyd fod dros 25,000 o ddisgyblion ledled Cymru mewn dosbarthiadau o 30 neu fwy. Gwnaethoch addewid y byddech yn sicrhau dosbarthiadau o lai na 25. Rydych wedi glastwreiddio hynny nes ei fod yn addewid cwbl ddiystyr. Felly, mae’r Blaid Lafur wedi torri eu haddewidion ar ffioedd dysgu ac wedi torri eu haddewidion ar faint dosbarthiadau. Felly, o ystyried bod yr addewid hwnnw’n ddiwerth gan nad ydych yn mynd i gyflawni 25 neu lai yn yr ystafelloedd dosbarth hynny, a fyddwch yn gwrando yn awr ar y corws o arbenigwyr sydd wedi lleisio’u barn, wedi condemnio’r polisi hwnnw ac wedi awgrymu eich bod yn gwario’r £36 miliwn a glustnodwyd gennych ar ei gyfer ar bethau eraill yn y gyfundrefn addysg yn lle hynny, lle byddwch yn cael gwell gwerth am arian?

And that, Presiding Officer, is the truth of the matter: Darren Millar is not willing to listen to parents and he is not willing to listen to the teaching profession when they say that class sizes do matter. My manifesto said that we would aim to reduce class sizes to 25, starting with the largest classes first, and that is exactly what we’re doing with the £36 million that has been made available to local authorities over the term of this Government.

A dyna’r gwir amdani, Llywydd: nid yw Darren Millar yn barod i wrando ar rieni ac nid yw’n barod i wrando ar y proffesiwn addysgu pan ddywedant fod maint dosbarthiadau’n bwysig. Roedd fy maniffesto’n dweud y byddem yn anelu i leihau maint dosbarthiadau i 25, gan ddechrau gyda’r dosbarthiadau mwyaf yn gyntaf, a dyna’n union rydym yn ei wneud â’r £36 miliwn a ddarparwyd i awdurdodau lleol yn ystod tymor y Llywodraeth hon.

Let me remind you of another promise that you made to the pupils and parents across Wales: you said that you were going to raise standards as education Minister, and yet, over the weekend, we saw you downplaying expectations about GCSE results for this summer. Just because we’re having reformed GCSEs doesn’t necessarily mean that we’re heading for poorer results. So, is the promise that you’re making to improve standards going to be another promise that you will not be able to deliver for pupils and parents, and can you tell us why on earth don’t you have more faith in pupils and teachers across Wales and expect them to do well?

Gadewch i mi eich atgoffa o addewid arall a wnaethoch i ddisgyblion a rhieni ledled Cymru: fe ddywedoch y byddech yn codi safonau fel Gweinidog addysg, ac eto, dros y penwythnos, fe’ch gwelsom yn bychanu’r disgwyliadau ar gyfer canlyniadau TGAU yr haf hwn. Nid yw’r ffaith ein bod yn diwygio TGAU yn golygu o reidrwydd ein bod yn anelu am ganlyniadau gwaeth. Felly, a fydd yr addewid y byddwch yn gwella safonau yn addewid arall na fyddwch yn gallu ei gyflawni ar gyfer disgyblion a rhieni, ac a allwch ddweud wrthym pam ar y ddaear nad oes gennych fwy o ffydd yn y disgyblion a’r athrawon ledled Cymru a disgwyl iddynt wneud yn dda?

I am absolutely committed to raising standards. That is my and this Government’s national mission: to raise standards and to close the attainment gap and to ensure that we have an education system in Wales that is a source of national pride and national confidence. The reformed GCSEs are an important part of that process. The reason why Qualifications Wales—the independent body that oversees the examinations system in Wales—has published papers warning of a potential dip in results is because of the introduction of more rigorous maths, English and Welsh GCSEs, because we are moving away from BTEC science. It is appalling to think—[Interruption.] Darren, if you would let me answer, it is appalling to think that, in some schools, until recently, not a single student sat a GCSE in science. Entire cohorts were put into BTEC exams. That was a disgrace. We also know—[Interruption.] We also know—[Interruption.] We also know that we have seen record early entry into this examination series. I am deeply concerned that some schools, for whatever reason, are entering children early for exams, after only one year of study of a course that should have been delivered over two years. And those students, who have the potential to get an A* maybe after two years, will get a C this summer, and those schools will settle for that C. That’s why I’ve asked Qualifications Wales to do a report into early entry, and I will take the appropriate action to ensure that early entry does not jeopardise my pursuit of high standards in our education system.

Rwy’n gwbl ymrwymedig i godi safonau. Dyna yw fy nghenhadaeth genedlaethol i a’r Llywodraeth hon: codi safonau a chau’r bwlch cyrhaeddiad a sicrhau bod gennym system addysg yng Nghymru sy’n destun balchder cenedlaethol a hyder cenedlaethol. Mae’r TGAU diwygiedig yn rhan bwysig o’r broses honno. Y rheswm pam fod Cymwysterau Cymru—y corff annibynnol sy’n goruchwylio’r system arholiadau yng Nghymru—wedi cyhoeddi papurau’n rhybuddio am ostyngiad posibl yn y canlyniadau yw am fod TGAU mathemateg, Saesneg a Chymraeg mwy trwyadl wedi cael eu cyflwyno, gan ein bod yn symud oddi wrth wyddoniaeth BTEC. Mae’n ofnadwy meddwl—[Torri ar draws.] Darren, pe baech yn gadael i mi ateb, mae’n ofnadwy meddwl, mewn rhai ysgolion, nad oedd unrhyw fyfyrwyr yn sefyll arholiadau TGAU mewn gwyddoniaeth tan yn ddiweddar. Roedd cohortau cyfan yn cael eu cyflwyno i sefyll arholiadau BTEC. Roedd hynny’n warthus. Gwyddom hefyd—[Torri ar draws.] Gwyddom hefyd—[Torri ar draws.] Gwyddom hefyd ein bod wedi gweld mwy o fyfyrwyr yn cael eu cyflwyno’n gynnar i sefyll y gyfres hon o arholiadau nag erioed o’r blaen. Rwy’n bryderus iawn fod rhai ysgolion, am ba reswm bynnag, yn cyflwyno plant i sefyll arholiadau’n gynnar, ar ôl un flwyddyn yn unig o astudio cwrs a ddylai gael ei gyflwyno dros gyfnod o ddwy flynedd. A bydd y myfyrwyr hynny, sydd â’r potensial i gael A* efallai ar ôl dwy flynedd, yn cael C yr haf hwn, a bydd yr ysgolion yn setlo am yr C honno. Dyna pam y gofynnais i Cymwysterau Cymru lunio adroddiad ar gyflwyno cynnar, a byddaf yn cymryd y camau priodol i sicrhau nad yw cyflwyno cynnar yn amharu ar fy nod o sicrhau safonau uchel yn ein system addysg.

Thank you, Presiding Officer. Cabinet Secretary, in 2012, you said that the welfare of pupils, teachers, and staff at our schools is paramount, and also, when talking about the discovery of asbestos, that the Government will try to shift responsibility on to local authorities and schools. Do you still believe, as you did when in opposition, that the Welsh Government should take responsibility when a local authority either cannot or will not give our teachers and students confidence that they are teaching and learning in a safe environment?

Diolch, Llywydd. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, yn 2012, fe ddywedoch fod lles disgyblion, athrawon, a staff yn ein hysgolion yn hollbwysig, a hefyd, wrth sôn am ganfod asbestos, y byddai’r Llywodraeth yn ceisio trosglwyddo cyfrifoldeb ymlaen i awdurdodau lleol ac ysgolion. A ydych yn dal o’r farn, fel roeddech pan oeddech yn un o’r gwrthbleidiau, y dylai Llywodraeth Cymru ysgwyddo’r cyfrifoldeb pan fo awdurdod lleol naill ai’n methu neu’n peidio â rhoi hyder i’n hathrawon a’n myfyrwyr eu bod yn addysgu ac yn dysgu mewn amgylchedd diogel?

It is absolutely crucial for teachers and pupils that they are undertaking their work in an environment that is fit for purpose and meets all the necessary health and safety regulations. That’s why we are, as I said, investing in the largest building of schools and colleges since the 1960s, and the removal of unsuitable buildings is a key part of how we prioritise our investment in the twenty-first century schools programme.

Mae’n gwbl hanfodol i athrawon a disgyblion eu bod yn gwneud eu gwaith mewn amgylchedd sy’n addas at y diben ac sy’n bodloni’r holl reoliadau iechyd a diogelwch angenrheidiol. Dyna pam ein bod, fel y dywedais, yn buddsoddi yn y rhaglen adeiladu ysgolion a cholegau fwyaf ers y 1960au, ac mae cael gwared ar adeiladau anaddas yn rhan allweddol o’r ffordd rydym yn blaenoriaethu ein buddsoddiad yn rhaglen ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain.

Thank you for that answer, Cabinet Secretary. Last year, when you became Cabinet Secretary for Education, and again today, you quite rightly said that there should be a presumption against the closure of rural schools, and that pupils in rural schools deserve the same opportunities as children in other areas of Wales. What action, if any, would you take if you suspected that a local authority was letting a rural school rot in order to make the case for closure stronger?

Diolch am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Y llynedd, pan ddaethoch yn Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros Addysg, ac unwaith eto heddiw, roeddech yn llygad eich lle i ddweud y dylid cael rhagdybiaeth yn erbyn cau ysgolion gwledig, a bod y disgyblion mewn ysgolion gwledig yn haeddu’r un cyfleoedd â phlant mewn ardaloedd eraill yng Nghymru. Pa gamau, os o gwbl, y byddech yn eu cymryd pe baech yn amau bod awdurdod lleol yn gadael i ysgol wledig bydru er mwyn cryfhau’r achos dros ei chau?

Well, as you quite rightly said, a presumption against closure was a manifesto promise in the Welsh Liberal Democrat manifesto, and I’m delighted to be in a position to make progress on that when in Government. As I said in answer to the first question from Janet Finch-Saunders, we are currently out to consultation on the reform of the school organisation code to strengthen that code and, indeed, to create for the first time ever in Wales a definition of what a rural school actually is. The first question any local authority should consider when looking at the issue around small and rural schools is the educational viability of that school, and they should use the opportunity afforded to them by the £2.5 million we are putting into the small and rural schools grant to be able to look at alternatives to closure to maintain a good standard of education in those small schools.

Wel, fel roeddech yn llygad eich lle i’w ddweud, roedd rhagdybiaeth yn erbyn cau yn addewid maniffesto ym maniffesto Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol Cymru, ac rwy’n falch iawn o gael bod mewn sefyllfa i wneud cynnydd ar hynny o beth yn y Llywodraeth. Fel y dywedais wrth ateb y cwestiwn cyntaf gan Janet Finch-Saunders, rydym yn ymgynghori ar hyn o bryd ar ddiwygio’r cod trefniadaeth ysgolion er mwyn cryfhau’r cod hwnnw, ac yn wir, er mwyn creu diffiniad, am y tro cyntaf erioed yng Nghymru, o beth yw ysgol wledig mewn gwirionedd. Y cwestiwn cyntaf y dylai unrhyw awdurdod lleol ei ystyried wrth edrych ar ysgolion bach a gwledig yw hyfywedd addysgol yr ysgol honno, a dylent ddefnyddio’r cyfle a roddir iddynt gan y £2.5 miliwn rydym yn ei roi ar gyfer y grant ysgolion bach a gwledig i edrych ar ddewisiadau eraill yn hytrach na chau, er mwyn cynnal safon dda o addysg yn yr ysgolion bach hynny.

Thank you very much for that answer, Cabinet Secretary. If a local authority isn’t maintaining a rural school properly, would you ever consider it appropriate to remove that school and a relevant proportion of the revenue support grant from the local authority and fund it directly as a delegated school?

Diolch yn fawr iawn am eich ateb, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Os nad yw awdurdod lleol yn cynnal ysgol wledig yn iawn, a fyddech yn ystyried o gwbl ei bod yn briodol cael gwared ar yr ysgol honno a chyfran berthnasol o’r grant cynnal refeniw gan yr awdurdod lleol a’i hariannu’n uniongyrchol fel ysgol ddirprwyedig?

My expectation is, should we move forward with reforms to the school organisation code—. That is a code that is underpinned on a statutory basis, therefore, it is a legal requirement that local authorities comply with that code. If there were examples that that was not the case, then I would take the appropriate action.

Os ydym yn bwrw ymlaen â diwygiadau i’r cod trefniadaeth ysgolion, fy nisgwyliad yw—. Mae hwnnw’n god ag iddo sail statudol, felly mae’n ofyniad cyfreithiol i awdurdodau lleol gydymffurfio â’r cod hwnnw. Pe bai enghreifftiau lle nad oedd hynny’n digwydd, byddwn yn rhoi’r camau priodol ar waith.

Llefarydd Plaid Cymru, Llyr Gruffydd.

Plaid Cymru spokesperson, Llyr Gruffydd.

Diolch yn fawr. Cabinet Secretary, what did Carwyn Jones tell you when you asked him whether you could raise tuition fees?

Diolch yn fawr. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, beth a ddywedodd Carwyn Jones wrthych pan ofynnoch iddo a gaech chi godi ffioedd dysgu?

The decision to link tuition fees to inflation was taken by the entire Cabinet, in recognition of a number of factors that I had to take into consideration—those factors being the ones I outlined to you, Llyr, in November of last year, when you raised this issue then.

Gwnaed y penderfyniad i gysylltu ffioedd dysgu â chwyddiant gan y Cabinet cyfan, i gydnabod nifer o ffactorau y bu’n rhaid i mi eu hystyried—y ffactorau a amlinellais i chi, Llyr, ym mis Tachwedd y llynedd, pan godoch y mater hwn bryd hynny.

Of course, Lord Adonis, Labour’s architect of tuition fees, has admitted that they’ve turned into a Frankenstein’s monster of £50,000 plus debts for graduates on modest salaries who can’t remotely afford to pay them back. Many of those students are clearly on the brink. What do you think is an acceptable level of debt for students in Wales?

Wrth gwrs, mae’r Arglwydd Adonis, pensaer ffioedd dysgu’r Blaid Lafur, wedi cyfaddef eu bod wedi troi’n anghenfil Frankenstein o £50,000 a mwy o ddyledion i raddedigion ar gyflogau cymedrol nad ydynt yn agos at allu fforddio eu had-dalu. Mae llawer o’r myfyrwyr hynny’n amlwg ar ymyl y dibyn. Beth sy’n lefel dderbyniol o ddyled i fyfyrwyr yng Nghymru yn eich barn chi?

The issue of how we fund students through their higher education has to take into consideration the principles of access to that education and the ability to sustain it. You will be very well aware, Llyr, that the National Union of Students, through their ‘The Pound in Your Pocket’ campaign, have stressed that it is living costs, and not fees, that are a barrier for people from lower incomes going on into higher education. That is a view that was signed up to in the Diamond review, on which I understand Plaid Cymru did have a representative and was able to feed fully into that review. They said then that that was the issue that needed to be addressed. I’m very well aware that these are difficult and challenging issues, as are you, Llyr, very well aware that these are difficult and challenging issues, because, as you said in this Chamber in November, there is a risk that the funding gap between institutions in England and Wales will only widen and:

There’s a possible perception that the quality of courses in Wales—that because they’re cheaper they’re not as good’.

He then went on to say—[Interruption.] You then went on to say—[Interruption.] You then went on to say, Llyr—[Interruption.] You then went on to say, Llyr, that, if fees went up in England, which they have done, it would be difficult to see how you could withstand the same move in Wales in many ways. You understand the difficulty our sector is facing and you should acknowledge that here in the Chamber.

Mae’n rhaid i’r cwestiwn ynglŷn â sut rydym yn ariannu myfyrwyr drwy eu haddysg uwch ystyried egwyddorion mynediad at yr addysg honno a’r gallu i’w chynnal. Fe fyddwch yn ymwybodol iawn, Llyr, fod Undeb Cenedlaethol y Myfyrwyr, drwy eu hymgyrch ‘Punt yn Eich Poced’, wedi pwysleisio mai costau byw yn hytrach na ffioedd sy’n rhwystr i bobl o gefndir incwm is rhag camu ymlaen i addysg uwch. Mae hwnnw’n safbwynt sy’n cael ei arddel yn adolygiad Diamond, a deallaf fod gan Blaid Cymru gynrychiolydd ar yr adolygiad hwnnw a’u bod wedi gallu cyfrannu ato’n llawn. Dywedasant wedyn mai dyna oedd y mater roedd angen mynd i’r afael ag ef. Gwn fod y rhain yn faterion anodd a heriol, fel y gwyddoch chithau, Llyr, fod y rhain yn faterion anodd a heriol, oherwydd, fel y dywedoch yn y Siambr hon ym mis Tachwedd, mae perygl mai ehangu a wnaiff y bwlch cyllido rhwng sefydliadau yng Nghymru a Lloegr, a:

‘Mae yna bosibiliad y bydd yna ganfyddiad, efallai, fod ansawdd y cyrsiau yng Nghymru, oherwydd eu bod nhw’n rhatach, ddim cystal.’

Aeth yn ei flaen i ddweud—[Torri ar draws.] Aethoch yn eich blaen i ddweud—[Torri ar draws.] Aethoch yn eich blaen i ddweud, Llyr—[Torri ar draws.] Aethoch yn eich blaen i ddweud, Llyr, pe bai’r ffioedd yn codi yn Lloegr, fel y gwnaethant, y byddai’n anodd gweld sut y gallech wrthsefyll yr un symudiad yng Nghymru mewn sawl ffordd. Rydych yn deall yr anhawster sy’n wynebu ein sector a dylech gydnabod hynny yma yn y Siambr.

Well, piling the pressure on the students isn’t the answer, is it? And trying to make it sound as if the NUS is supporting the increase in the fee that was announced yesterday is plain wrong. Yes, there’s a shift in how you support students—nobody’s doubting that. But raising the burden of debt that students in Wales are suffering—and you didn’t answer my question, by the way—is not an acceptable answer in my book. Now, I thought that the Liberal Democrats and Labour, in terms of—their principle was to move towards a free education. Your decision has taken us further away from that than ever, ever before. So, can you confirm that the original principle that you, and others on the Government’s bench, once held so dear is still in place?

Wel, nid rhoi pwysau ar y myfyrwyr yw’r ateb, nage? Ac mae ceisio awgrymu bod Undeb Cenedlaethol y Myfyrwyr yn cefnogi’r cynnydd yn y ffi a gyhoeddwyd ddoe yn gwbl anghywir. Oes, mae yna newid yn y ffordd rydych yn cefnogi myfyrwyr—nid oes unrhyw un yn amau hynny. Ond nid yw cynyddu’r ddyled sy’n wynebu myfyrwyr yng Nghymru—ac nid ydych wedi ateb fy nghwestiwn, gyda llaw—yn ateb derbyniol yn fy marn i. Nawr, roeddwn o dan yr argraff fod y Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol a’r Blaid Lafur, o ran—mai eu hegwyddor oedd ceisio dynesu at addysg rad ac am ddim. Mae eich penderfyniad chi wedi golygu ein bod ymhellach i ffwrdd oddi wrth hynny nag erioed o’r blaen. Felly, a allwch gadarnhau bod yr egwyddor wreiddiol a fu unwaith mor bwysig i chi ac eraill ar fainc y Llywodraeth yno o hyd?

Of course, in an ideal world, education at all levels should be free, but I don’t live in that ideal world. I live in a world where people from poorer backgrounds can’t access higher education because they cannot afford to pay for their accommodation or their books or their food. So, what we have done is fundamentally shift, in line with the recommendations of the Diamond review—of which Plaid Cymru were a part and signed up to—. We have moved the way in which we support our students so that we can ensure that those from the poorest backgrounds will have the equivalent of a living wage, that average Welsh students will have a non-repayable grant of £7,000 a year. And that is in stark contrast, Llyr, to your party, which has promised nothing on upfront costs, promised nothing on the day-to-day living costs of this country. And we have gone further than that, because we will ensure that this is available for part-time students and postgraduate students. Again, if Plaid Cymru were in charge, there would be loans for postgraduate students and no grants. We are delivering grants.

Wrth gwrs, mewn byd delfrydol, dylai addysg ar bob lefel fod yn rhad ac am ddim, ond nid wyf yn byw yn y byd delfrydol hwnnw. Rwy’n byw mewn byd lle na all pobl o gefndiroedd tlotach gael mynediad at addysg uwch gan nad ydynt yn gallu fforddio talu am eu llety neu eu llyfrau neu eu bwyd. Felly, yr hyn rydym wedi’i wneud yw newid yn sylfaenol, yn unol ag argymhellion adolygiad Diamond—yr oedd Plaid Cymru yn rhan ohono ac yn ei gefnogi—. Rydym wedi newid y ffordd rydym yn cynorthwyo ein myfyrwyr fel y gallwn sicrhau y bydd y rhai o’r cefndiroedd tlotaf yn cael yr hyn sy’n cyfateb i gyflog byw, y bydd myfyrwyr cyffredin yng Nghymru yn cael grant o £7,000 y flwyddyn nad oes angen ei ad-dalu. Ac mae hynny, Llyr, yn gwrthgyferbynnu’n llwyr â’ch plaid chi, nad yw wedi addo unrhyw beth tuag at gostau a delir ymlaen llaw, nad yw wedi addo unrhyw beth at gostau byw o ddydd i ddydd y wlad hon. Ac rydym wedi mynd gam ymhellach na hynny, gan y byddwn yn sicrhau y bydd hyn ar gael i fyfyrwyr rhan-amser a myfyrwyr ôl-raddedig. Unwaith eto, pe bai Plaid Cymru mewn grym, benthyciadau a fyddai ar gael i fyfyrwyr ôl-raddedig yn hytrach na grantiau. Rydym ni’n darparu grantiau.

Ariannu Addysg Uwch yng Ngogledd Cymru

Higher Education Funding in North Wales

3. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am ariannu addysg uwch yng ngogledd Cymru? OAQ(5)0159(EDU)[W]

3. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on higher education funding in north Wales? OAQ(5)0159(EDU)[W]

Can I thank the Member for the question? A thriving higher education sector is pivotal to achieving the Government’s priorities for the economy and for our society here in Wales. The funding reforms I announced yesterday will provide opportunities for all our institutions, including those in north Wales.

A gaf fi ddiolch i’r Aelod am ei chwestiwn? Mae sector addysg uwch ffyniannus yn hollbwysig er mwyn cyflawni blaenoriaethau’r Llywodraeth ar gyfer yr economi ac ar gyfer ein cymdeithas yma yng Nghymru. Bydd y diwygiadau cyllido a gyhoeddais ddoe yn darparu cyfleoedd ar gyfer ein holl sefydliadau, gan gynnwys y rhai yng ngogledd Cymru.

Ers eich cyhoeddiad ddoe am gynyddu ffioedd dysgu, rydw i wedi derbyn nifer fawr o negeseuon gan fyfyrwyr sy’n astudio ym Mangor yn ogystal â gan ddisgyblion ysgol sydd yn gobeithio mynd ymlaen i brifysgol. Yn ystod yr etholiad, fe gafodd miloedd o fyfyrwyr a phobl ifanc ar draws y wlad eu hysbrydoli gan wleidyddiaeth unwaith eto, yn rhannol am eu bod nhw wedi gweld rhai o’r pleidiau gwleidyddol yn fodlon cyflwyno polisïau a oedd yn cydfynd efo’u gwerthoedd nhw. Yn dilyn eich cyhoeddiad chi ddoe, a ydych chi’n cytuno fod gwleidyddion wedi codi gobeithion cenhedlaeth gyfan o bobl ifanc, dim ond i’w chwalu nhw yn rhacs ychydig wythnosau yn ddiweddarach?

Since your announcement yesterday on increasing tuition fees, I have received a large number of messages from students studying in Bangor, as well as from school pupils who hope to go on to university. During the election, thousands of students and young people across the country were inspired by politics once again, partly because they had seen some of the political parties being willing to introduce policies that coincided with their own values. So, following your announcement yesterday, do you agree that politicians have raised the hopes of a whole generation of young people, only to dash those hopes a few weeks later?

Only yesterday, the Member was on her feet raising legitimate concerns about job losses in her constituency at Bangor University, and I’m sure that she will have had conversations with the vice-chancellor of said university about the necessity to respond to the situation we find across the border in England with fees rising, and his determination to ensure that Bangor, which recently got the very highest award in the teaching excellence framework, was able to compete with both UK and international students. The Member asks about values. The package that I introduced yesterday—[Interruption.] The package that I introduced yesterday, that will shift Government support away from paying off fees, which graduates have to do via their pay cheque, to supporting what many students and many parents say to me is the largest problem, upfront costs, is a package that I am proud of and it’s a package that is well in tune with my values. I’m not sure about what yours are.

Ddoe ddiwethaf, roedd yr Aelod ar ei thraed yn nodi pryderon dilys ynglŷn â cholli swyddi yn ei hetholaeth ym Mhrifysgol Bangor, ac rwy’n siŵr y bydd wedi cael sgyrsiau gydag is-ganghellor y brifysgol dan sylw ynglŷn â’r angen i ymateb i’r sefyllfa a welwn dros y ffin yn Lloegr wrth i’r ffioedd gynyddu, a’i benderfyniad i sicrhau bod Bangor, sydd wedi cael y wobr uchaf yn y fframwaith rhagoriaeth addysgu yn ddiweddar, yn gallu cystadlu â myfyrwyr y DU a myfyrwyr rhyngwladol. Hola’r Aelod ynglŷn â gwerthoedd. Mae’r pecyn a gyflwynais ddoe—[Torri ar draws.] Mae’r pecyn a gyflwynais ddoe, a fydd yn dargyfeirio cymorth y Llywodraeth oddi wrth dalu ffioedd sy’n rhaid i raddedigion eu talu drwy eu cyflogau, i gefnogi’r hyn y mae llawer o fyfyrwyr a llawer o rieni yn dweud wrthyf yw’r broblem fwyaf, sef y costau a delir ymlaen llaw, yn becyn rwy’n falch ohono ac mae’n becyn sy’n cyd-fynd yn dda â fy ngwerthoedd. Nid wyf yn siŵr beth yw’ch rhai chi.

Back to, I think, the issue raised yesterday, Bangor University are facing, or staff are facing, 115 compulsory redundancies. The university says this is because they need to save £8.5 million to address significant financial challenges, and we understand a number of other universities across the length and breadth of Wales are considering how they’re going to square the financial circle in similar circumstances. We know that universities lost out on tens of millions of pounds taken from them and given in grants paid to English universities through the fees of students going over the border to study, something that your party and mine accepted from Labour couldn’t be done after your party and mine and Plaid voted to scrap student fees during the second Assembly. We also know that yesterday, Universities Wales, responding to your student support package, referred to having had to absorb the increases in costs since the introduction of the current tuition fee system in 2012. Following your announcement yesterday, therefore, how quickly will the savings generated actually generate greater funding being received by universities in Wales to hopefully mitigate against these tough decisions they’re having to take?

Gan ddychwelyd, rwy’n credu, at y mater a godwyd ddoe, mae Prifysgol Bangor yn wynebu, neu mae’r staff yn wynebu, 115 o ddiswyddiadau gorfodol. Dywed y brifysgol mai’r rheswm am hyn oedd bod angen iddynt arbed £8.5 miliwn i fynd i’r afael â heriau ariannol sylweddol, a deallwn fod nifer o brifysgolion eraill ledled Cymru yn ystyried sut y byddant yn sgwario’r cylch ariannol mewn amgylchiadau tebyg. Gwyddom fod prifysgolion wedi gweld degau o filiynau o bunnoedd yn cael ei gymryd oddi wrthynt a’i roi mewn grantiau i brifysgolion yn Lloegr drwy ffioedd myfyrwyr sy’n mynd dros y ffin i astudio, rhywbeth y derbyniodd eich plaid chi a fy mhlaid i gan y Blaid Lafur na ellid ei wneud ar ôl i’ch plaid chi a fy un innau a Phlaid Cymru bleidleisio i gael gwared ar ffioedd myfyrwyr yn ystod yr ail Gynulliad. Gwyddom hefyd fod Prifysgolion Cymru, wrth ymateb i’ch pecyn cymorth i fyfyrwyr ddoe, wedi cyfeirio at orfod amsugno’r cynnydd yn y costau ers cyflwyno’r system ffioedd dysgu bresennol yn 2012. Yn dilyn eich cyhoeddiad ddoe, felly, pa mor gyflym y bydd yr arbedion a gynhyrchir yn arwain at fwy o arian ar gyfer prifysgolion yng Nghymru er mwyn iddynt allu lliniaru, gobeithio, yn erbyn y penderfyniadau anodd hyn y mae’n rhaid iddynt eu gwneud?

We have to recognise, or some of us have to recognise, the very difficult situation that many of our higher education institutions are facing at the moment. It is a perfect storm of Brexit, of demographics, as well as having to compete in a market that is not just a market in the UK but an international market. This Government has to respond to that. Now, despite ongoing financial pressures, the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales have been able to allocate funds in excess of £100 million to the sector for 2017-18, but there are challenging times ahead. However, our predictions over the implementation of Diamond should see HEFCW’s budget grow to be able to support our higher education institutions but, of course, that is subject to the usual budgeting processes that we have here in the Assembly. But you will be aware that, in my agreement that brought me into Government, I and the First Minister have agreed that universities should be no worse off as a result of the implementation of Diamond. In fact, it’s true to say that the implementation of Diamond will cost money to the Government in the first instance, but it is the right thing to do for Welsh students and Welsh institutions.

Mae’n rhaid inni gydnabod, neu mae’n rhaid i rai ohonom gydnabod, y sefyllfa anodd iawn sy’n wynebu llawer o’n sefydliadau addysg uwch ar hyn o bryd. Mae’n storm berffaith sy’n cyfuno Brexit, demograffeg, yn ogystal â gorfod cystadlu mewn marchnad sydd nid yn unig yn farchnad yn y DU ond yn farchnad ryngwladol. Mae’n rhaid i’r Llywodraeth hon ymateb i hynny. Nawr, er y pwysau ariannol parhaus, mae Cyngor Cyllido Addysg Uwch Cymru wedi gallu dyrannu dros £100 miliwn o gyllid i’r sector ar gyfer 2017-18, ond mae cyfnod heriol o’n blaenau. Fodd bynnag, dylai ein rhagfynegiadau mewn perthynas â gweithredu Diamond weld cyllideb Cyngor Cyllido Addysg Uwch Cymru yn tyfu i allu cefnogi ein sefydliadau addysg uwch, ond wrth gwrs, mae hynny’n amodol ar y prosesau cyllidebu arferol sydd gennym yma yn y Cynulliad. Ond fe fyddwch yn gwybod, yn y cytundeb a ddaeth â mi yn rhan o’r Llywodraeth, fy mod i a’r Prif Weinidog wedi cytuno na ddylai’r prifysgolion fod yn waeth eu byd o ganlyniad i weithredu Diamond. Mewn gwirionedd, mae’n wir dweud y bydd y broses o weithredu Diamond yn costio arian i’r Llywodraeth yn y lle cyntaf, ond dyna’r peth iawn i’w wneud ar gyfer myfyrwyr Cymru a sefydliadau Cymru.

Addysg Cerddoriaeth

Music Education

4. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am y camau y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn eu cymryd i sicrhau bod addysg gerddoriaeth yn hygyrch i bawb? OAQ(5)0152(EDU)

4. Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on measures the Welsh Government is taking to ensure music education is accessible to all? OAQ(5)0152(EDU)

Thank you, Rhianon. In Wales, all children benefit from music education during the foundation phase and at key stages 2 and 3, when it is a statutory part of the curriculum. Furthermore, the Welsh Government is collaborating with stakeholders across the education and culture sectors to deliver a range of measures aimed at enhancing that provision.

Diolch, Rhianon. Yng Nghymru, mae pob plentyn yn elwa ar addysg gerddoriaeth yn ystod y cyfnod sylfaen ac yng nghyfnodau allweddol 2 a 3, pan fo’n rhan statudol o’r cwricwlwm. Yn ogystal â hynny, mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn cydweithio â rhanddeiliaid ar draws y sectorau addysg a diwylliant i gyflwyno ystod o fesurau sy’n anelu at wella’r ddarpariaeth honno.

Thank you. Wales has world-class and globally esteemed institutions such as the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Welsh National Opera and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama conservatoire. This is supported ably by National Youth Arts Wales and Tŷ Cerdd, who also administer the elite National Youth Orchestra of Wales, national youth dance, theatre, choir, wind and brass bands. These historical national structures and local Welsh music support services through accessible instrumental music support service tuition in school have sponsored, propagated and nurtured some of Wales’s finest talents, and that includes thousands of musicians and also icons such as Bryn Terfel, Catrin Finch and Paul Watkins and composers such as Huw Watkins and Karl Jenkins. Those of you who know that there’s a Welsh music event next Wednesday, some of them will be in attendance—a little plug.

Cabinet Secretary, I also welcome the creative arts and learning action plan, a collaboration between Welsh Government and the Welsh arts council; the innovative new Donaldson arts-based curriculum; and the national endowment music fund as clear indicators of this Government’s early intent and direction of travel. Today I also welcome the pilot music amnesty; I do welcome these important measures. As the Cabinet Secretary stated to me in a prior Plenary, such initiatives and measures are a spoke in the wheel to the future sustainability of active Welsh music performance in Wales. Music is important to Wales. Economically, in creative arts—

Diolch. Mae gan Gymru sefydliadau o safon fyd-eang sy’n ennyn parch ym mhob cwr o’r byd megis Cerddorfa Genedlaethol Gymreig y BBC, Opera Cenedlaethol Cymru a chonservatoire Coleg Brenhinol Cerdd a Drama Cymru. Caiff hyn ei gefnogi’n fedrus gan Celfyddydau Cenedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru a Tŷ Cerdd, sydd hefyd yn gweinyddu’r Gerddorfa Genedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru elitaidd, dawns genedlaethol ieuenctid, theatr, côr a bandiau chwyth a phres cenedlaethol. Mae’r strwythurau cenedlaethol hanesyddol hyn a gwasanaethau cefnogi cerddoriaeth lleol yng Nghymru drwy hyfforddiant offerynnol hygyrch y gwasanaethau cefnogi cerddoriaeth yn yr ysgol, wedi noddi, hybu a meithrin rhai o dalentau gorau Cymru, ac mae hynny’n cynnwys miloedd o gerddorion yn ogystal ag eiconau megis Bryn Terfel, Catrin Finch a Paul Watkins a chyfansoddwyr megis Huw Watkins a Karl Jenkins. I’r rhai ohonoch sy’n gwybod am y digwyddiad cerddoriaeth Gymreig ddydd Mercher nesaf, bydd rhai o’r rhain yn bresennol—hysbyseb fach.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwyf hefyd yn croesawu’r cynllun gweithredu ar gyfer dysgu creadigol drwy’r celfyddydau, cydweithrediad rhwng Llywodraeth Cymru a chyngor celfyddydau Cymru; cwricwlwm arloesol newydd Donaldson sy’n seiliedig ar y celfyddydau; a’r gronfa waddol genedlaethol ar gyfer cerddoriaeth fel dangosyddion clir o fwriad cynnar a chyfeiriad teithio’r Llywodraeth hon. Heddiw, rwyf hefyd yn croesawu cynllun peilot yr amnest offerynnau cerdd; rwy’n croesawu’r mesurau pwysig hyn. Fel y dywedodd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wrthyf mewn Cyfarfod Llawn blaenorol, mae mentrau a mesurau o’r fath yn cyfrannu at gynaladwyedd perfformiadau cerddorol Cymreig yng Nghymru yn y dyfodol. Mae cerddoriaeth yn bwysig i Gymru. Yn economaidd, yn y celfyddydau creadigol—

You do need to come to a question, however important music is in Wales.

Mae angen i chi ofyn cwestiwn, ni waeth pa mor bwysig yw cerddoriaeth yng Nghymru.

I will. Would the Cabinet Secretary agree that the time is right to futureproof and safeguard our structures in Wales? Would she agree with me that Wales would greatly benefit from a national overarching music performance strategy, a delivery model incorporating instrumental tuition across Wales regardless of income, wealth or privilege?

Mi wnaf. A fyddai Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn cytuno ei bod yn bryd gwarchod ein strwythurau yng Nghymru, a’u diogelu ar gyfer y dyfodol? A fyddai’n cytuno â mi y byddai Cymru’n elwa’n fawr o strategaeth drosfwaol genedlaethol ar berfformio cerddoriaeth, model cyflawni i gynnwys hyfforddiant offerynnol ledled Cymru heb ystyried incwm, cyfoeth na braint?

Wagner was shorter than that. [Laughter.]

Roedd Wagner yn fyrrach na hynny. [Chwerthin.]

Well, I can certainly agree with the intervention behind me, having sat through a Wagner opera once. It indeed was very, very, very, very long.

Can I agree with the Member that we have much to celebrate with regard to music and creative learning through the arts here in Wales? But there is more to do, especially with regard to local education music services, which have gone through a very tough time. I met only yesterday with Karl Napieralla, who chaired the task and finish group in the last Assembly, to look to see what more we can do in this regard.

I’m sure that all of us will enjoy the music showcase event that the Member has organised for us next week. Could I say that the timing of the event, Presiding Officer, is excellent? Because 19 July is the day that the Senedd will be a drop-off point for staff and Assembly Members to donate their unwanted instruments as part of the first ever Welsh Government and National Assembly for Wales musical instrument amnesty. I would encourage all Members here today in the Chamber to start looking through their cupboards and their attics to see if they have anything that they could donate to this innovative project.

Wel, yn sicr, gallaf gytuno â’r ymyriad y tu ôl i mi, gan fy mod wedi eistedd drwy opera Wagner unwaith. Yn wir, roedd yn hir iawn, iawn, iawn, iawn.

A gaf fi gytuno gyda’r Aelod fod gennym lawer i’w ddathlu o ran cerddoriaeth a dysgu creadigol drwy’r celfyddydau yma yng Nghymru? Ond mae mwy i’w wneud, yn enwedig mewn perthynas â gwasanaethau cerddoriaeth addysg leol, sydd wedi mynd drwy gyfnod anodd iawn. Ddoe ddiwethaf, cefais gyfarfod gyda Karl Napieralla, cadeirydd y grŵp gorchwyl a gorffen yn y Cynulliad diwethaf, i drafod beth arall y gallwn ei wneud yn hyn o beth.

Rwy’n siŵr y bydd pob un ohonom yn mwynhau’r arddangosfa gerddoriaeth y mae’r Aelod wedi’i threfnu ar ein cyfer yr wythnos nesaf. A gaf fi ddweud bod amseriad y digwyddiad, Llywydd, yn ardderchog? Oherwydd 19 Gorffennaf yw’r diwrnod y bydd y Senedd yn fan gollwng i staff ac Aelodau’r Cynulliad gyfrannu eu hofferynnau diangen fel rhan o amnest offerynnau cerdd cyntaf Llywodraeth Cymru a Chynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru. Byddwn yn annog pob Aelod sydd yma yn y Siambr heddiw i ddechrau edrych drwy eu cypyrddau a’u hatigau i weld a oes ganddynt unrhyw beth y gallent ei gyfrannu i’r prosiect arloesol hwn.

Rhianon Passmore mentioned the national endowment fund, of course, and back in February when you announced this, in answer to my question of whether the fund would result in support for core music services being diverted into this new fund, you replied that you were mindful of the fact that it might mean diversion and we’ll have to be aware of that as we go forward. I appreciate the fund is still pretty much in its infancy, but can you tell us about the development of the criteria of access to that fund, and whether the vulnerability that it might present to core music services has been resolved?

Crybwyllodd Rhianon Passmore y gronfa waddol genedlaethol, wrth gwrs, ac yn ôl ym mis Chwefror pan gyhoeddoch hyn, wrth ateb fy nghwestiwn ynglŷn ag a fyddai’r gronfa’n arwain at ddargyfeirio’r gefnogaeth oddi wrth wasanaethau cerddoriaeth craidd ac i’r gronfa newydd hon, fe ateboch eich bod yn ymwybodol o’r ffaith y gallai hynny olygu dargyfeirio ac y byddai’n rhaid inni fod yn ymwybodol o hynny wrth inni symud ymlaen. Rwy’n sylweddoli ei bod yn dal yn ddyddiau cynnar ar y gronfa, ond a allwch ddweud wrthym am ddatblygiad y meini prawf ar gyfer cael mynediad at y gronfa honno, ac a yw’r perygl y gallai ei achosi i wasanaethau cerddoriaeth craidd wedi cael ei ddatrys?

The Member will be aware that £1 million has been made available jointly from my department and the department for economy and infrastructure for the establishment and the seed funding of the endowment. The Arts Council of Wales is currently in the process of setting the endowment up, but I will write to the Member with more details about the specific question that she has.

Bydd yr Aelod yn ymwybodol fod £1 filiwn wedi ei ddarparu gan fy adran i ar y cyd ag adran yr economi a’r seilwaith at ddibenion sefydlu’r gwaddol a’r cyllid sbarduno ar ei gyfer. Mae Cyngor Celfyddydau Cymru yn y broses o sefydlu’r gwaddol ar hyn o bryd, ond byddaf yn ysgrifennu at yr Aelod gyda mwy o fanylion am ei chwestiwn penodol.

I wanted to ask specifically about your conversations with the new organisation National Youth Arts Wales. I was speaking to tutors at Gartholwg school, when we went as part of the committee inquiry on music, with Dawn Bowden, and one of the tutors said to me, ‘My daughter is applying for the European orchestra because she can afford to do that more than she can afford the fees for the Welsh orchestra.’ I feel that if our young people are being priced out of being able to apply for their own national orchestra, what does this say to the future instrumentalists of Wales when they want to aspire to the top of the pyramid, which is National Youth Arts? If they cannot aspire to that because of the fees, then how are they then supposed to engage in the process? So, I wonder, with this new body now in place, what conversations you can have with regard to extending bursary schemes so that everybody can be part of this exciting venture.

Roeddwn am ofyn yn benodol am eich sgyrsiau gyda’r sefydliad newydd, Celfyddydau Cenedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru. Roeddwn yn siarad â thiwtoriaid yn ysgol Gartholwg, pan aethom fel rhan o ymchwiliad y pwyllgor ar gerddoriaeth, gyda Dawn Bowden, a dywedodd un o’r tiwtoriaid wrthyf, ‘Mae fy merch yn gwneud cais am y gerddorfa Ewropeaidd gan y gall fforddio gwneud hynny yn haws nag y gall fforddio’r ffioedd ar gyfer cerddorfa Cymru.’ Os yw ein pobl ifanc yn cael eu prisio allan o allu gwneud cais i’w cerddorfa genedlaethol eu hunain, beth y mae hyn yn ei ddweud wrth ddarpar offerynwyr Cymru pan fyddant am anelu at frig y pyramid, sef Celfyddydau Cenedlaethol Ieuenctid Cymru? Os na allant anelu at hynny oherwydd y ffioedd, sut y mae disgwyl iddynt gymryd rhan yn y broses? Felly, gyda’r corff newydd hwn bellach ar waith, tybed pa sgyrsiau y gallwch eu cael mewn perthynas ag ehangu’r cynlluniau bwrsariaeth fel y gall pawb fod yn rhan o’r fenter gyffrous hon.

Can I thank Bethan for her question and the intense interest that the Member has shown on this subject over a number of terms here in this National Assembly? I welcome very much the review by the committee that she chairs, and the interest that they’ve taken with regard to this. I’m very concerned that a young person with obvious talent should not be able to participate at a level that is commensurate with her ability to do so. If the Member would be good enough to write to me, I will look at that specific instance.

We have to work across the piece with all bodies that have an interest and responsibility for delivering this to ensure that access is based on talent and interest and not on the ability of a parent to pay. I was greatly heartened recently, opening the new Ysgol y Wern in Wrexham. The headteacher there had used some of his pupil deprivation grant to purchase musical instruments for the children at that school, a school that has high levels of free school meals, and he said to me after the performance of their violin group, ‘I knew I’d cracked it when four of these children asked for a violin for their birthdays.’ But we need to ensure that, if we give them that chance, they are able to continue to pursue that at older levels. Again, this stresses the importance of why all Assembly Members should get into their attics and look to see what they can bring to the amnesty next week. I can assure them that their instruments will find a good home.

A gaf fi ddiolch i Bethan am ei chwestiwn a’r diddordeb dwys y mae’r Aelod wedi’i ddangos yn y pwnc hwn dros sawl tymor yma yn y Cynulliad Cenedlaethol? Croesawaf adolygiad y pwyllgor y mae’n ei gadeirio yn fawr iawn, a’u diddordeb yn hyn o beth. Mae’n peri cryn bryder i mi na all unigolyn ifanc â thalent amlwg gymryd rhan ar lefel sy’n gymesur â’i gallu i wneud hynny. Os gall yr Aelod ysgrifennu ataf, byddaf yn edrych ar yr achos penodol hwnnw.

Mae’n rhaid i ni weithio gyda’r holl gyrff sydd â diddordeb a chyfrifoldeb dros gyflawni hyn i sicrhau bod mynediad yn seiliedig ar dalent a diddordeb yn hytrach nag ar allu rhiant i dalu. Cefais fy nghalonogi’n fawr yn ddiweddar, wrth agor yr ysgol newydd, Ysgol y Wern, yn Wrecsam. Roedd y pennaeth yno wedi defnyddio peth o’i grant amddifadedd disgyblion i brynu offerynnau cerddorol ar gyfer y plant yn yr ysgol honno, ysgol sydd â lefelau uchel o blant yn cael prydau ysgol am ddim, a dywedodd wrthyf ar ôl perfformiad eu grŵp ffidil, ‘Roeddwn yn gwybod fy mod wedi taro’r hoelen ar ei phen pan ofynnodd pedwar o’r plant hyn am ffidil ar eu penblwyddi.’ Ond mae angen i ni sicrhau, os rhown y cyfle hwnnw iddynt, eu bod yn gallu parhau i fynd ar drywydd hynny ar lefelau hŷn. Unwaith eto, mae hyn yn pwysleisio pam y dylai holl Aelodau’r Cynulliad fynd i’w hatigau ac edrych i weld beth y gallant ei roi i’r amnest yr wythnos nesaf. Gallaf eu sicrhau y bydd eu hofferynnau’n mynd i gartrefi da.

Ysgolion Bro

Community-focused Schools

5. Pa asesiad y mae’r Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi’i wneud o ddatblygu ysgolion bro yng Nghymru? OAQ(5)0151(EDU)

5. What assessment has the Cabinet Secretary made of the development of community-focused schools in Wales? OAQ(5)0151(EDU)

Thank you, John. I support the use of schools as community assets. We are working to progress the recommendations from the Public Policy Institute for Wales report on the use of school facilities by communities. The twenty-first century schools programme encourages the construction of flexible assets, especially those that can be used by the school and the community as a whole.

Diolch, John. Rwy’n cefnogi’r defnydd o ysgolion fel asedau cymunedol. Rydym yn gweithio er mwyn bwrw ymlaen ag argymhellion adroddiad y Sefydliad Polisi Cyhoeddus i Gymru ar y defnydd o gyfleusterau ysgolion gan gymunedau. Mae rhaglen ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain yn annog adeiladu asedau hyblyg, yn enwedig rhai y gellir eu defnyddio gan yr ysgol a’r gymuned yn gyffredinol.

Cabinet Secretary, children spend relatively little time in school compared to time out of school, so it’s obviously very, very important that the home and, indeed, the community in which they live contribute to and encourage their education. Community-focused schools are a great way of building that partnership between the school, the family and the wider community. The facilities, sadly, are too often shut away at evenings, weekends and school holidays, which is not a good use of resource at a time of great strain on public finances. So, for lots and lots of reasons, including those, it would be great if we had more consistency in Wales. At the moment, I think it’s quite patchy. So, I’d be really interested in whether you are considering developing a mechanism, a means by which we could have consistently community-focused schools right across the length and breadth of Wales.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, ychydig iawn o amser y mae plant yn ei dreulio yn yr ysgol o gymharu â thu allan i’r ysgol, felly mae’n amlwg yn bwysig iawn, iawn fod y cartref, ac yn wir, y gymuned lle maent yn byw yn cyfrannu at eu haddysg ac yn ei hybu. Mae ysgolion bro yn ffordd wych o adeiladu’r bartneriaeth honno rhwng yr ysgol, y teulu a’r gymuned ehangach. Yn anffodus, mae’r cyfleusterau, yn rhy aml, ar gau gyda’r nos, dros y penwythnos ac yn ystod gwyliau ysgol, ac nid yw hynny’n ddefnydd da o adnoddau mewn cyfnod o gryn bwysau ar gyllid cyhoeddus. Felly, am sawl rheswm, gan gynnwys y rheiny, byddai’n wych pe bai gennym fwy o gysondeb yng Nghymru. Ar hyn o bryd, credaf fod pethau’n eithaf anghyson. Felly, byddai gennyf gryn ddiddordeb mewn gwybod a ydych yn ystyried datblygu mecanwaith, ffordd y gallem gael ysgolion gyda ffocws cymunedol cyson ym mhob cwr o Gymru.

The Member highlights a very important point. After the quality of teaching, a family’s engagement with their child’s education is the second biggest factor that will determine that child’s educational outcomes. So, when I talk about community-focused schools, I am clear that it is not just access to a building. It is an ethos within that school that sees its role as engaging with families as a whole. The Member is absolutely right, Presiding Officer: good practice is not uniform. There is outstanding practice going on in Wales. I would particularly like to commend Miskin Primary School in Rhondda Cynon Taf; Monkton Priory Community Primary School in Pembrokeshire, which does some outstanding work with the wider community in engaging parents back into learning, developing qualifications for them then to go on into the world of work; Ysgol Maesglas in Flintshire; and Hafod Primary School, a school I hope to visit with Mike Hedges shortly, which have all been seen by Estyn to be outstanding in this field. We need to ensure that local education authorities and regional consortia are addressing issues of inconsistency when they carry out their challenge and review meetings.

Mae’r Aelod yn nodi pwynt pwysig iawn. Ar ôl ansawdd yr addysgu, ymgysylltiad teulu gydag addysg eu plant yw’r ffactor fwyaf ond un o ran pennu canlyniadau addysgol y plentyn hwnnw. Felly, pan fyddaf yn sôn am ysgolion bro, rwy’n glir nad yw hynny’n golygu mynediad i adeilad yn unig. Mae’n ethos yn yr ysgol honno sy’n ystyried mai ei rôl yw ymgysylltu â theuluoedd cyfan. Mae’r Aelod yn llygad ei le, Llywydd: nid yw ymarfer da yn unffurf. Ceir ymarfer rhagorol yng Nghymru. Yn benodol, hoffwn ganmol Ysgol Gynradd Meisgyn yn Rhondda Cynon Taf; Ysgol Gynradd Gymunedol Monkton Priory yn Sir Benfro, sy’n gwneud gwaith rhagorol gyda’r gymuned ehangach yn denu rhieni yn ôl i ddysgu, gan ddatblygu cymwysterau er mwyn iddynt allu camu ymlaen wedyn i fyd gwaith; Ysgol Maesglas yn Sir y Fflint; ac Ysgol Gynradd yr Hafod, ysgol rwy’n gobeithio ymweld â hi gyda Mike Hedges yn fuan, sydd wedi cael eu barnu’n rhagorol yn y maes hwn gan Estyn. Mae angen i ni sicrhau bod awdurdodau addysg lleol a chonsortia rhanbarthol yn mynd i’r afael â materion sy’n ymwneud ag anghysondeb wrth iddynt gynnal eu cyfarfodydd herio ac adolygu.

Cabinet Secretary, you represent one of the largest rural areas in south Wales in this Chamber. Rural schools are among the most community-focused schools in Wales. They are at the heart of the communities they serve. Since 1999, hundreds of local authority maintained schools have closed, with rural areas worst affected. What action does the Cabinet Secretary intend to take to address the issues of underfunding, which is the biggest obstacle to keeping rural schools open in Wales?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rydych yn cynrychioli un o ardaloedd gwledig mwyaf de Cymru yn y Siambr hon. Mae ysgolion gwledig ymhlith yr ysgolion sy’n canolbwyntio fwyaf ar y gymuned yng Nghymru. Maent yn ganolog i’r cymunedau y maent yn eu gwasanaethu. Ers 1999, mae cannoedd o ysgolion a gynhelir gan awdurdodau lleol wedi cau, gydag ardaloedd gwledig yn cael eu heffeithio waethaf. Pa gamau y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn bwriadu eu cymryd i fynd i’r afael â thanariannu, sef y rhwystr mwyaf rhag cadw ysgolion gwledig ar agor yng Nghymru?

Presiding Officer, can I correct the Member? I don’t represent one of the largest rural constituencies in this Assembly; it is the largest single rural constituency, geographically, in this Assembly. It is because of that that I have a deep interest in the subject. And that’s why my previous experience as a backbencher led me to be determined that this Government can take the issue of rural schools forward. The Member will be aware of answers I gave earlier. We’re currently consulting on the school organisation code to move to a presumption against closure. But with regard to finances, he will be aware of the special grant that has been developed, of £2.5 million per annum, to address some of these challenges—very real challenges—that face rural schools and maintaining education in those communities.

Llywydd, a gaf fi gywiro’r Aelod? Nid wyf yn cynrychioli un o etholaethau gwledig mwyaf y Cynulliad hwn; rwy’n cynrychioli’r etholaeth wledig fwyaf, yn ddaearyddol, yn y Cynulliad hwn. Dyna pam fod gennyf ddiddordeb dwfn yn y pwnc hwn. A dyna pam fod fy mhrofiad blaenorol fel aelod o’r meinciau cefn wedi sicrhau fy mod yn benderfynol y gall y Llywodraeth hon symud ymlaen ar fater ysgolion gwledig. Bydd yr Aelod yn ymwybodol o’r atebion a roddais yn gynharach. Ar hyn o bryd, rydym yn ymgynghori ar y cod trefniadaeth ysgolion er mwyn sefydlu rhagdybiaeth yn erbyn cau. Ond o ran cyllid, bydd yn ymwybodol o’r grant arbennig a ddatblygwyd, o £2.5 miliwn y flwyddyn, er mwyn mynd i’r afael â rhai o’r heriau hyn—heriau go iawn—sy’n wynebu ysgolion gwledig a chynnal addysg yn y cymunedau hynny.

I was wondering what work you had done in relation to community relations and schools that are community focused. For example, in my area—and others’—we’ve got a new superschool in Ysgol Bae Baglan. They were told before the school was built, amalgamating different communities around that area, that they would be able to access provision—be able to access the field—for activities, but it now comes about that it’s for the governors of that school to be able to make the decision. Quite often, that creates tension in the local community, where the governors may have a different view as to what that field should be used for as to what the community has already used it for over many, many years. So, I’m wondering what conversations you’ve had to try and encourage proper conversations between the schools and the communities to ensure that everybody can actually access those facilities when they do need to use them.

Roeddwn yn meddwl tybed pa waith rydych wedi’i wneud mewn perthynas â chysylltiadau cymunedol ac ysgolion bro. Er enghraifft, yn fy ardal i—ac ardaloedd eraill—mae gennym ysgol fawr newydd, sef Ysgol Bae Baglan. Dywedwyd wrthynt cyn i’r ysgol gael ei hadeiladu, gan uno gwahanol gymunedau o amgylch yr ardal honno, y byddent yn gallu cael mynediad at ddarpariaeth—yn gallu cael mynediad at y cae—ar gyfer gweithgareddau, ond bellach ymddengys mai llywodraethwyr yr ysgol honno fydd yn gallu gwneud y penderfyniad. Yn aml iawn, mae hynny’n creu tensiwn yn y gymuned leol, lle y gall y llywodraethwyr fod â safbwynt gwahanol ynglŷn â sut y dylid defnyddio’r cae o ran sut y mae’r gymuned eisoes wedi’i ddefnyddio dros lawer o flynyddoedd. Felly, rwy’n meddwl tybed pa sgyrsiau rydych wedi’u cael i geisio annog sgyrsiau priodol rhwng yr ysgolion a’r cymunedau er mwyn sicrhau y gall pawb, mewn gwirionedd, ddefnyddio’r cyfleusterau hynny pan fyddant angen eu defnyddio.

I’m very sorry to hear that there are tensions around the Bae Baglan area. I officially opened the school. It is an impressive, impressive facility, and the expectation, as I said, in our twenty-first century schools programme, is that we build buildings that are flexible assets, with the expectation that the wider community will be able to benefit from the significant investment that Welsh Government is making in partnership with local authorities to provide those facilities. Of course, because of the local management of schools, governing bodies are very powerful, but I would be surprised that any governing body would not see their school as being central to a community. They are one and the same, or at least they should be, and I will take further advice as to whether this is a one-off or whether this is a systematic problem that Welsh Government will need to address.

Mae’n ddrwg gennyf glywed bod tensiynau yn ardal Bae Baglan. Fi a agorodd yr ysgol yn swyddogol. Mae’n gyfleuster hynod drawiadol, a’r disgwyliad, fel y dywedais, yn rhaglen ysgolion yr unfed ganrif ar hugain, yw ein bod yn adeiladu adeiladau sy’n asedau hyblyg, gyda’r disgwyliad y bydd y gymuned ehangach yn gallu elwa ar y buddsoddiad sylweddol y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud mewn partneriaeth ag awdurdodau lleol i ddarparu’r cyfleusterau hynny. Wrth gwrs, oherwydd y modd y caiff ysgolion eu rheoli’n lleol, mae cyrff llywodraethu’n bwerus iawn, ond buaswn yn synnu pe bai unrhyw gorff llywodraethu yn ystyried nad yw eu hysgol yn ganolog i gymuned. Maent yn rhan o’r un peth, neu dylent fod o leiaf, a byddaf yn gofyn am gyngor pellach i weld ai un digwyddiad yw hwn neu a yw’n broblem systematig y bydd angen i Lywodraeth Cymru fynd i’r afael â hi.

Cynllun Dyfodol Byd-eang

The Global Futures Plan

6. Beth y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei wneud i fonitro canlyniadau ei chynllun pum mlynedd, Dyfodol Byd-eang, i wella a hyrwyddo ieithoedd tramor modern yng Nghymru? OAQ(5)0155(EDU)

6. What is the Welsh Government doing to monitor the outcomes of its five-year Global Futures plan to improve and promote modern foreign languages in Wales? OAQ(5)0155(EDU)

The implementation of the Global Futures plan is overseen by its steering group, which comprises key stakeholders from across the education sector in Wales. The steering group monitors the delivery and the outcomes of the plan, and encourages partnership working to improve and promote modern foreign languages in Wales.

Bydd gweithrediad y cynllun Dyfodol Byd-eang yn cael ei oruchwylio gan ei grŵp llywio, sy’n cynnwys rhanddeiliaid allweddol o bob rhan o’r sector addysg yng Nghymru. Mae’r grŵp llywio yn monitro’r modd y caiff y cynllun ei ddarparu ynghyd â’i ganlyniadau, ac yn annog gweithio mewn partneriaeth i wella a hyrwyddo ieithoedd tramor modern yng Nghymru.

Thank you, Cabinet Secretary. As I’m sure you will have seen, the British Council has recently published their third annual language trends survey of modern foreign languages in Welsh secondary schools, the results of which, I am sure you will agree, are very worrying. The survey comes just 18 months into the plan, which is aimed at promoting modern foreign languages in Wales, but in reality we have witnessed the continuing diminishing status of modern foreign languages in Welsh schools. In fact, the report tells us that between 2002 and 2016 the number of pupils studying a foreign language at GCSE level has declined by 48 per cent, and more than a third of Welsh schools have less than 10 per cent of year 10 pupils studying a foreign language. In light of the report’s results, Cabinet Secretary, what more can we do to realise the Government’s ambition for Wales to become a ‘bilingual plus 1’ country?

Diolch i chi, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet. Yn ddiweddar, fel rwy’n siŵr y byddwch wedi gweld, mae’r Cyngor Prydeinig wedi cyhoeddi eu trydydd arolwg tueddiadau iaith blynyddol o ieithoedd tramor modern mewn ysgolion uwchradd yng Nghymru, ac mae’r canlyniadau, rwy’n sicr y byddwch yn cytuno, yn peri pryder mawr. Daw’r arolwg 18 mis yn unig ar ôl dechrau’r cynllun, sy’n anelu at hyrwyddo ieithoedd tramor modern yng Nghymru, ond mewn gwirionedd, rydym wedi gweld statws ieithoedd tramor modern yn parhau i ostwng yn ysgolion Cymru. Yn wir, mae’r adroddiad yn dweud wrthym fod nifer y disgyblion a oedd yn astudio iaith dramor ar lefel TGAU wedi gostwng 48 y cant rhwng 2002 a 2016, a bod gan fwy na thraean o ysgolion yng Nghymru lai na 10 y cant o ddisgyblion blwyddyn 10 yn astudio iaith dramor. Yng ngoleuni canlyniadau’r adroddiad, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, beth arall y gallwn ei wneud i wireddu uchelgais y Llywodraeth i Gymru fod yn wlad ‘ddwyieithog + 1’?

Thank you, Lynne. I have noted the language trends survey and I have asked the Global Futures steering group that I referred to in my first answer to review the report at its next meeting, which will take place on 14 July, and report back to me on what more we can do to improve the take-up of modern foreign languages. There is a whole host of reasons why the drop may be happening, but the Government is taking action. Since the launch of Global Futures, we have invested in a modern foreign language mentoring scheme in conjunction with some of our higher education institutes, which send undergraduates who are studying languages into schools to inspire and to support pupils. We have recently signed an agreement with the Spanish embassy to support the teaching of Spanish, and we have done similar work with France and Germany. For instance, the Goethe-Institut are setting up a specific programme at Cardiff University. But there is still more, I’m sure, that we can do, and I will take advice from the steering group.

Diolch i chi, Lynne. Rwyf wedi nodi’r arolwg tueddiadau iaith ac rwyf wedi gofyn i’r grŵp llywio Dyfodol Byd-eang y cyfeiriais ato yn fy ateb cyntaf adolygu’r adroddiad yn ei gyfarfod nesaf a fydd yn cael ei gynnal ar 14 Gorffennaf, ac i adrodd yn ôl i mi ynglŷn â beth arall y gallwn ei wneud i wella’r niferoedd sy’n astudio ieithoedd tramor modern. Mae llu o resymau posibl dros y gostyngiad hwn, ond mae’r Llywodraeth yn gweithredu. Ers lansio Dyfodol Byd-Eang, rydym wedi buddsoddi mewn cynllun mentora ieithoedd tramor modern ar y cyd â rhai o’n sefydliadau addysg uwch, sy’n anfon israddedigion sy’n astudio ieithoedd i ysgolion i ysbrydoli ac i gefnogi disgyblion. Yn ddiweddar, rydym wedi arwyddo cytundeb gyda llysgenhadaeth Sbaen i gefnogi addysgu Sbaeneg, ac rydym wedi gwneud gwaith tebyg gyda Ffrainc a’r Almaen. Er enghraifft, mae’r Goethe-Institut yn sefydlu rhaglen benodol ym Mhrifysgol Caerdydd. Ond mae mwy y gallwn ei wneud, rwy’n siŵr, a byddaf yn gofyn am gyngor gan y grŵp llywio.

Cabinet Secretary, during First Minister’s question time yesterday I referred to the latest ‘Language Trends Wales’ report that found teachers were extremely worried about the future of modern foreign languages. The report said that Global Futures was popular with teachers, but, so far, it is having a limited impact on take-up of modern foreign languages in Wales. Can the Cabinet Secretary advise when she intends to the review the progress of Global Futures to ensure the serious decline in modern foreign language learning in Wales is reversed? Thank you.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, yn ystod cwestiynau i’r Prif Weinidog ddoe cyfeiriais at yr adroddiad ‘Tueddiadau Iaith Cymru’ diweddaraf a oedd yn dangos bod athrawon yn poeni’n fawr am ddyfodol ieithoedd tramor modern. Dywedodd yr adroddiad fod Dyfodol Byd-Eang yn boblogaidd gydag athrawon, ond nad yw ond yn cael effaith gyfyngedig ar y nifer sy’n astudio ieithoedd tramor modern yng Nghymru hyd yn hyn. A all Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddweud pryd y mae’n bwriadu adolygu cynnydd Dyfodol Byd-Eang er mwyn sicrhau bod y dirywiad difrifol mewn dysgu ieithoedd tramor modern yng Nghymru yn cael ei wrthdroi? Diolch.

Well, I would refer the Member to the answer I gave Lynne Neagle with regard to how we are following up on Global Futures. But can I just take this opportunity—I think we’re all, and rightly, concerned about the numbers of students who are taking modern foreign languages, but it’s not all bad news. GCSE results in 2016 showed that Wales had higher A* pass rates and A* to C pass rates for French, Spanish, German and other modern foreign languages than their counterparts across the border in England. So, whilst I want to see more students taking these GCSEs, the ones who are are doing really well and are to be congratulated. We need to understand what more we can do to encourage more students to emulate their colleagues in school to take these languages, because when Welsh students take these exams, they do well.

Wel, rwyf am gyfeirio’r Aelod at yr ateb a roddais i Lynne Neagle o ran sut rydym yn gwneud gwaith dilynol ar Dyfodol Byd-Eang. Ond a gaf fi fanteisio ar y cyfle hwn—credaf fod pawb ohonom yn pryderu, a hynny’n briodol, am nifer y myfyrwyr sy’n astudio ieithoedd tramor modern, ond nid yw’r newyddion yn ddrwg i gyd. Roedd canlyniadau TGAU yn 2016 yn dangos bod gan Gymru gyfraddau uwch yn cael A* a chyfraddau uwch yn cael A* i C uwch mewn Ffrangeg, Sbaeneg, Almaeneg ac ieithoedd tramor modern eraill na’u cymheiriaid ar draws y ffin yn Lloegr. Felly, er fy mod eisiau gweld mwy o fyfyrwyr yn astudio’r pynciau hyn ar lefel TGAU, mae’r rhai sydd eisoes yn gwneud hynny’n gwneud yn dda iawn ac mae angen eu llongyfarch. Mae angen i ni ddeall beth arall y gallwn ei wneud i annog mwy o fyfyrwyr i efelychu eu cyd-ddisgyblion yn yr ysgol drwy astudio’r ieithoedd hyn, oherwydd pan fo myfyrwyr Cymru yn sefyll yr arholiadau hyn, maent yn gwneud yn dda.

Mi gafodd yr adroddiad ar dueddiadau iaith ei drafod yng nghyfarfod diwethaf y grŵp trawsbleidiol Cymru ryngwladol, a, gyda llaw, rydw i’n gwahodd pawb i gyfarfod yr wythnos nesaf i drafod cysylltu â’r ‘diaspora’ Cymreig a gwrando ar beth sydd gan GlobalWelsh a Cymry a’r Byd i’w ddweud bryd hynny. Ond un pryder penodol a gafodd ei godi oedd bod y fagloriaeth Gymreig yn arfer cynnwys ieithoedd tramor modern, ond bod yr elfen yna wedi cael ei dileu erbyn hyn. A oes modd edrych ar hynny eto, gan fod hyn o bosib wedi dileu’r ffordd i rai tuag at ddysgu iaith fodern?

The report on language trends was discussed at the last meeting of the cross-party group on international Wales, and, by the way, I invite everyone to a meeting next week to discuss connecting with the Welsh diaspora and hearing what GlobalWelsh and Cymru a’r Byd have to say at that point. But one specific concern raised was that the Welsh baccalaureate used to include modern foreign languages, but that element has now been removed. Could that be reviewed now, because this perhaps has actually eradicated that pathway to a modern foreign language for some?

The Member makes an interesting point. I’m not sure that we should be adding more to the Welsh bac. Indeed, listening to professionals, actually, they say they want less in the Welsh bac, so I don’t know whether we’re in a position to add more input into the Welsh bac. What we do need to look at, potentially—there is some anecdotal evidence to suggest that modern foreign languages, indeed all core subjects that have not previously been part of the schools’ accountability measure, have seen a drop in the numbers taking them, so music, drama et cetera. So, there may be an underlying trend that schools are entering students into exams that count towards that school’s individual accountability measures and, therefore, there is a narrowing of the curriculum. The Member will be aware that I have announced a fundamental review of accountability measures for schools so that any unintended consequences, whether that be a narrowing of the curriculum or, indeed, early entry, which we discussed earlier, stop. So, that issue around accountability and whether that’s driving some of these behaviours will be tested as part of that review.

Mae’r Aelod yn gwneud pwynt diddorol. Nid wyf yn siŵr y dylem fod yn ychwanegu mwy at y Fagloriaeth Gymreig. Yn wir, wrth wrando ar bobl broffesiynol, mewn gwirionedd, maent yn dweud eu bod eisiau llai yn y Fagloriaeth Gymreig, felly nid wyf yn gwybod a ydym mewn sefyllfa i ychwanegu mwy at y Fagloriaeth Gymreig. Yr hyn sydd angen i ni edrych arno, o bosibl—mae rhywfaint o dystiolaeth anecdotaidd sy’n awgrymu bod ieithoedd tramor modern, yn wir, yr holl bynciau craidd nad ydynt wedi bod yn rhan o fesurau atebolrwydd ysgolion yn flaenorol, wedi gweld gostyngiad yn y nifer sy’n eu hastudio, felly cerddoriaeth, drama ac yn y blaen. Felly, efallai bod tuedd sylfaenol i ysgolion gyflwyno disgyblion i sefyll arholiadau sy’n cyfrif tuag at fesurau atebolrwydd unigol yr ysgol honno ac felly, mae’r cwricwlwm yn culhau. Bydd yr Aelod yn gwybod fy mod wedi cyhoeddi adolygiad sylfaenol o fesurau atebolrwydd ar gyfer ysgolion fel bod unrhyw ganlyniadau anfwriadol, boed yn gulhau’r cwricwlwm, neu gyflwyno cynnar yn wir, a drafodwyd gennym yn gynharach, yn dod i ben. Felly, bydd y mater ynglŷn ag atebolrwydd, a pha un a yw hynny’n cymell rhai o’r ymddygiadau hyn, yn cael ei brofi fel rhan o’r adolygiad hwnnw.

Diolch, Llywydd. When I was in school, the best part of 100 years ago, the policy was that everybody learnt at least one foreign language up to the age of 16. Things are radically different now, and I’m pleased to hear the figures that the Cabinet Secretary announced a moment ago and the emphasis that the Welsh Government is placing upon learning modern foreign languages. But one of the big problems we’ve got in persuading schoolchildren to opt for modern foreign languages is they’re perceived to be difficult, and it is true that learning a language from scratch is difficult and requires discipline for the mind. That’s, of course, one of the great, important reasons for learning a modern foreign language, and it also broadens the mind. And having learned French, German and Russian, as well as Latin, at school myself—it’s made me the cosmopolitan world citizen that I now am. [Interruption.]

Diolch, Llywydd. Pan oeddwn i yn yr ysgol, y rhan orau o 100 mlynedd yn ôl, y polisi oedd bod pawb yn dysgu o leiaf un iaith dramor hyd at 16 oed. Mae pethau’n wahanol iawn erbyn hyn, ac rwy’n falch o glywed y ffigurau a gyhoeddodd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet funud yn ôl a’r pwyslais y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn ei roi ar ddysgu ieithoedd tramor modern. Ond un o’r problemau mawr sydd gennym wrth berswadio plant ysgol i ddewis astudio ieithoedd tramor modern yw’r canfyddiad eu bod yn anodd, ac mae’n wir fod dysgu iaith o’r dechrau yn anodd ac yn gofyn am ddisgyblaeth feddyliol. Dyna, wrth gwrs, yw un o’r rhesymau mawr pwysig dros ddysgu iaith dramor fodern, ac mae hefyd yn ehangu’r meddwl. Ac wedi dysgu Ffrangeg, Almaeneg a Rwsieg, yn ogystal â Lladin, yn yr ysgol fy hun—dyna a’m gwnaeth y dinesydd byd-eang cosmopolitaidd ag wyf fi heddiw. [Torri ar draws.]

The Member tempts me, Presiding Officer; the Member really does tempt me. But, you’re right, we do need to promote modern foreign languages within our schools, and that’s why we have extended the student mentoring project with Cardiff, Swansea, Bangor and Aberystwyth universities. We have over a quarter of schools working in that programme, where bright, sparky, enthusiastic undergraduates go into schools to provide that buzz around languages that we need to create to encourage pupils, before they’ve made their choices on GCSE, that this is something that they can enjoy, something they can be good at, and can give them really life-enhancing work and personal skills. We also have to ensure that the quality of language teaching is as good as it can be, and, as I said, whilst the figures in the report are concerning, it’s not all bad news. This year, two of the three German teacher of the year awards were awarded to teachers who are teaching German in Welsh schools.

Mae’r Aelod yn fy nhemtio, Llywydd; mae’r Aelod yn fy nhemtio o ddifrif. Ond rydych yn gywir, mae angen i ni hyrwyddo ieithoedd tramor modern yn ein hysgolion, a dyna pam rydym wedi ymestyn y prosiect mentora myfyrwyr gyda phrifysgolion Caerdydd, Abertawe, Bangor ac Aberystwyth. Mae gennym dros chwarter yr ysgolion yn cymryd rhan yn y rhaglen honno, lle mae israddedigion disglair, bywiog a brwdfrydig yn mynd i ysgolion i ddarparu’r wefr rydym angen ei chreu ynghylch ieithoedd er mwyn annog disgyblion, cyn iddynt wneud eu dewisiadau TGAU, fod hyn yn rhywbeth y gallant ei fwynhau, rhywbeth y gallant ei wneud yn dda, a rhywbeth sy’n gallu rhoi sgiliau gwaith a phersonol iddynt a fydd yn gwella eu bywydau’n fawr. Mae’n rhaid i ni hefyd sicrhau bod ansawdd yr addysgu iaith cystal ag y gall fod, ac fel y dywedais, er bod y ffigurau yn yr adroddiad yn peri pryder, nid yw’r newyddion yn ddrwg i gyd. Eleni, dyfarnwyd dwy o’r tair gwobr athro Almaeneg y flwyddyn i athrawon sy’n addysgu Almaeneg mewn ysgolion yng Nghymru.

2. 2. Cwestiynau i’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol
2. 2. Questions to the Counsel General

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.

Yr eitem nesaf yw’r cwestiynau i’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol, a’r cwestiwn cyntaf—Simon Thomas.

The next item is the questions to the Counsel General, and the first question comes from Simon Thomas.

Confensiwn Pysgodfeydd Llundain 1964

The 1964 London Fisheries Convention

1. A wnaiff y Cwnsler Cyffredinol ddatganiad am y goblygiadau cyfreithiol i Gymru o dynnu allan o gonfensiwn pysgodfeydd Llundain 1964? OAQ(5)0045(CG)[W]

1. Will the Counsel General make a statement on the legal implications for Wales of withdrawing from the 1964 London fisheries convention? OAQ(5)0045(CG)[W]

Members will understand that if I make assessments of the legal implications for Wales of any matter, those assessments are legally privileged.

Bydd yr Aelodau’n deall, os byddaf yn gwneud asesiadau o’r goblygiadau cyfreithiol i Gymru mewn perthynas ag unrhyw fater, y bydd yr asesiadau hynny yn gyfreithiol freintiedig.

I’m grateful to the Counsel General for his usual caution in these matters. However, perhaps I can tempt him by saying that I don’t think there are any legal obligations, but there are strong political obligations for Michael Gove’s decision. My understanding is that, in fact, the London fisheries convention is probably overtaken by our relationship with the common fisheries policy and what’s happened since then in joining the European Union. But what concerns me is that we have Michael Gove deciding to symbolically pull out of an international obligation that relates to a devolved matter, so perhaps I can ask the Counsel General whether he agrees with me that fisheries are devolved, that Wales and the Welsh Government is responsible for fisheries protection in Wales, and for what will happen when we leave the European Union as regards quotas, sharing of quotas, negotiations around that. And in the light of the fact that, yesterday, Boris Johnson told my colleague Jonathan Edwards that the Joint Ministerial Committee, the JMC, will now decide upon these matters, is he of the view, therefore, that Wales will be able to exercise a veto regarding further nefarious moves by Michael Gove?

Rwy’n ddiolchgar i’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol am ei ofal arferol yn y materion hyn. Fodd bynnag, efallai y gallaf ei demtio drwy ddweud nad wyf yn credu bod unrhyw rwymedigaethau cyfreithiol, ond mae yna oblygiadau gwleidyddol cryf i benderfyniad Michael Gove. Fy nealltwriaeth i, mewn gwirionedd, yw bod confensiwn pysgodfeydd Llundain, yn ôl pob tebyg, yn cael ei oddiweddyd gan ein perthynas â’r polisi pysgodfeydd cyffredin a’r hyn sydd wedi digwydd ers hynny o ran ymuno â’r Undeb Ewropeaidd. Ond yr hyn sy’n fy mhoeni yw bod gennym Michael Gove yn penderfynu tynnu’n ôl, yn symbolaidd, o rwymedigaeth ryngwladol sy’n ymwneud â mater datganoledig, felly efallai y gallaf ofyn i’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol a yw’n cytuno â mi fod pysgodfeydd wedi cael eu datganoli, mai Cymru a Llywodraeth Cymru sy’n gyfrifol am warchod pysgodfeydd yng Nghymru, ac am yr hyn a fydd yn digwydd pan fyddwn yn gadael yr Undeb Ewropeaidd o ran cwotâu, rhannu cwotâu, a thrafodaethau ynglŷn â hynny. Ac yn sgil y ffaith fod Boris Johnson wedi dweud wrth fy nghyd-Aelod Jonathan Edwards ddoe y bydd y Cyd-bwyllgor Gweinidogion yn penderfynu ar y materion hyn yn awr, a yw o’r farn felly y bydd Cymru’n gallu arfer feto mewn perthynas â chamau ysgeler pellach gan Michael Gove?

Well, thank you for the supplementary question. Like the Member, I’ve also since this announcement experienced troubled and sleepless nights over this particular issue. It’s worth noting, of course, that the 1964 fisheries convention came well before the joining of the European Economic Community, now the EU, and also, what that convention actually says. Article 2 of it recognises exclusive territorial jurisdiction within a six-mile coastal belt, but it made provision for signatory states to fish within six to 12 miles, with conditions, and then went on in article 4 to provide that fishing vessels of signatory states were not to direct their fishing towards stocks of fish or fishing grounds substantially different from those they have habitually exploited, and that the coastal state has the power to enforce that rule. So, the convention sits alongside—and, in fact, is overtaken by—the common fisheries policy, which allows European vessels access, between 12 and 200 miles, and makes provision for specified member states to fishing grounds within six to 12 nautical miles.

Now, the specific nature of the Welsh fishing industry, consisting of mainly small vessels: there may be certain attractions to that within the 12-mile limit. However, that will be a matter that’s appropriate for the Minister with policy responsibility for the matter. It wouldn’t be appropriate for me to discuss that aspect further, but I can, of course, express the serious concern that the Member himself raises, that in what is now a clearly devolved area, officials were only notified on 30 June that an announcement would be made on 2 July, despite a marine and fisheries working group of the four administrations being held on 26 June. That issue of consultation and engagement is clearly a matter of some concern on an area that does specifically relate to a devolved area, and a matter where Government has been engaged. So, there are concerns there, and concerns, I suppose, about the statements that are being made almost off the cuff, so to speak, and there is certainly a lack of clarity as to what the UK Government’s position is on some of these areas.

Wel, diolch i chi am y cwestiwn atodol. Fel yr Aelod, ers y cyhoeddiad hwn rwyf finnau hefyd wedi cael nosweithiau cythryblus a di-gwsg ynglŷn â’r mater penodol hwn. Mae’n werth nodi, wrth gwrs, fod confensiwn pysgodfeydd 1964 mewn bodolaeth ymhell cyn i ni ymuno â’r Gymuned Economaidd Ewropeaidd, yr UE bellach, a hefyd, yr hyn y mae’r confensiwn hwnnw’n ei ddweud mewn gwirionedd. Mae erthygl 2 ynddo yn cydnabod awdurdodaeth diriogaethol neilltuedig o fewn llain arfordirol chwe milltir, ond gwnâi ddarpariaeth a alluogai’r gwladwriaethau a’i llofnododd i bysgota o fewn chwech i 12 milltir, gydag amodau, ac yna aeth ymlaen i ddweud yn erthygl 4 nad oedd cychod pysgota gwladwriaethau a’i llofnododd i gyfeirio eu pysgota tuag at stociau o bysgod neu ardaloedd pysgota sylweddol wahanol i’r rhai y maent wedi’u defnyddio’n gyson, a bod gan y wladwriaeth arfordirol bŵer i orfodi’r rheol honno. Felly, mae’r confensiwn yn sefyll ochr yn ochr—ac, mewn gwirionedd, yn cael ei oddiweddyd gan—y polisi pysgodfeydd cyffredin, sy’n caniatáu i gychod Ewropeaidd gael mynediad, rhwng 12 a 200 milltir, ac yn gwneud darpariaeth i alluogi aelod-wladwriaethau penodedig i gael mynediad at ardaloedd pysgota o fewn chwech i 12 milltir forol.

Nawr, natur benodol y diwydiant pysgota yng Nghymru, sy’n cynnwys cychod bach yn bennaf: mae’n bosibl y bydd rhai agweddau atyniadol i hynny o fewn y terfyn 12 milltir. Fodd bynnag, bydd hwnnw’n fater sy’n briodol i’r Gweinidog sydd â chyfrifoldeb polisi drosto ymdrin ag ef. Ni fyddai’n briodol i mi drafod yr agwedd honno ymhellach, ond wrth gwrs, gallaf fynegi’r pryder difrifol y mae’r Aelod ei hun yn ei grybwyll, sef na chafodd swyddogion eu hysbysu hyd nes 30 Mehefin y byddai cyhoeddiad yn cael ei wneud ar 2 Gorffennaf, a hynny yn yr hyn sydd bellach yn faes datganoledig amlwg, er bod gweithgor morol a physgodfeydd y pedair gweinyddiaeth wedi’i gynnal ar 26 Mehefin. Mae’r mater hwnnw ynghylch ymgynghori ac ymgysylltu yn amlwg yn destun cryn bryder mewn mater sy’n ymwneud yn benodol â maes sydd wedi’i ddatganoli, ac yn fater y mae’r Llywodraeth wedi bod yn ymwneud ag ef. Felly, mae yna bryderon yno, a phryderon, mae’n debyg, am y datganiadau sy’n cael eu gwneud bron yn fyrfyfyr, fel petai, ac yn sicr ceir diffyg eglurder mewn perthynas â safbwynt Llywodraeth y DU ar rai o’r meysydd hyn.

It is of course the case that the United Kingdom is the signatory of the 1964 treaty, and therefore it is the UK Minister who will take the decision to withdraw from it, but I do agree with the implication of Simon Thomas’s question, that as fishing is a devolved matter, there ought to have been some consideration for the views of this Assembly and the Welsh Government. But I do hope that the Welsh Government will take the view that the recovery of our waters, or control over the 6 to 12-mile limit, is going to be vitally important to the development of the Welsh fishing industry in the future, and it would be rather ridiculous if, in the rest of the United Kingdom, we were to have repatriated control but not in the case of Wales. Quite how that would work I don’t know, because the EU fishermen would still have the right to Welsh waters to that extent, and that would certainly militate significantly against the advantages for Welsh fishermen of being able to have an exclusive zone, which would otherwise be imperilled if we still continued to be a member of the 1964 treaty.

Mae’n wir, wrth gwrs, mai’r Deyrnas Unedig yw llofnodwr cytundeb 1964, ac felly Gweinidog y DU a fydd yn gwneud y penderfyniad i dynnu’n ôl ohono, ond rwy’n cytuno â goblygiadau cwestiwn Simon Thomas, fod pysgota’n fater datganoledig, ac felly y dylai fod rhywfaint o ystyriaeth wedi’i rhoi i safbwyntiau’r Cynulliad hwn a Llywodraeth Cymru. Ond rwy’n gobeithio y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn arddel y safbwynt y bydd adennill ein dyfroedd, neu reolaeth dros y terfyn 6 i 12 milltir, yn hanfodol bwysig i ddatblygiad diwydiant pysgota Cymru yn y dyfodol, a byddai braidd yn chwerthinllyd pe baem yn cael rheolaeth wedi’i dychwelyd i weddill y Deyrnas Unedig, ond nid yn achos Cymru. Sut y byddai hynny’n gweithio, nid wyf yn gwybod, oherwydd byddai pysgotwyr yr UE yn parhau i fod â hawl i ddyfroedd Cymru i’r graddau hynny, a byddai hynny’n sicr yn milwrio’n sylweddol yn erbyn y manteision i bysgotwyr Cymru o allu cael parth unigryw, a fyddai fel arall yn cael ei beryglu pe baem yn parhau i fod yn aelod o gytundeb 1964.

Some of those are very valid points. Of course, they are out of context in the sense that, of course, the UK fishing industry as a whole is very dependent also on access to many other waters. And that, of course, some of the limitations that exist, and the 1964 convention in particular, came into force in order to also recognise historic rights—sometimes rights that went back over several hundred years. Someone made the comment a while back that, of course, fish don’t carry passports. Of course, one of the purposes to the conventions of the common fisheries policy was actually the protection of stocks—the legal protection of fishing stocks—for the benefit of all. So, there are many complications, and I think it would be a grave mistake to look at the legal aspects of this solely within the context of individual interests, because individual interests are very much also affected by a broader collective interest.

Mae rhai o’r rheiny’n bwyntiau dilys iawn. Wrth gwrs, maent allan o’u cyd-destun yn yr ystyr bod diwydiant pysgota’r DU gyfan, wrth gwrs, yn ddibynnol iawn hefyd ar fynediad at lawer o ddyfroedd eraill. A bod rhai o’r cyfyngiadau sy’n bodoli, wrth gwrs, a chonfensiwn 1964 yn arbennig, wedi dod i rym er mwyn cydnabod hawliau hanesyddol hefyd—hawliau a oedd weithiau’n ymestyn yn ôl dros gannoedd o flynyddoedd. Dywedodd rhywun beth amser yn ôl nad yw pysgod yn cario pasbortau. Wrth gwrs, un o ddibenion confensiynau’r polisi pysgodfeydd cyffredin oedd diogelu stociau mewn gwirionedd—diogelu stociau pysgota yn gyfreithiol—er budd pawb. Felly, ceir llawer o gymhlethdodau, ac rwy’n credu y byddai’n gamgymeriad difrifol inni edrych ar agweddau cyfreithiol hyn yng nghyd-destun diddordebau unigol yn unig, gan fod diddordebau unigol hefyd yn cael eu heffeithio i raddau helaeth gan ddiddordeb cyfunol ehangach.

Erthygl 50

Article 50

2. Pa asesiad y mae’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol wedi’i wneud o’r posibilrwydd o ddirymu erthygl 50? OAQ(5)0046(CG)

2. What assessment has the Counsel General made of the possible revoking of article 50? OAQ(5)0046(CG)

I am, of course, not in a position to speak about any assessment I may or may not have made on this issue. Members will be familiar with the established convention that neither the existence nor content of law officer advice should be disclosed.

Nid wyf mewn sefyllfa, wrth gwrs, i siarad am unrhyw asesiad y gallwn fod wedi’i wneud neu heb ei wneud mewn perthynas â’r mater hwn. Bydd yr Aelodau’n gyfarwydd â’r confensiwn sefydledig na ddylid datgelu bodolaeth na chynnwys cyngor swyddogion y gyfraith.

Thank you. Lord Kerr, the author of article 50 and former Permanent Secretary of the Foreign Office, suggested at a conference recently that article 50 is indeed revocable and that many political leaders have encouraged us to change our minds, including Macron, Schäuble and Rutte. He suggested that even if you have notified the EU of your intention to leave, then there’s nothing to say that we must leave, but he did say that there may be a political price to pay for that. Now, regardless of the complexities and issues of the rights of wrongs of the possible revocability of article 50, could the Counsel General actually just give us his legal assessment of whether the interpretation of Lord Kerr is correct?

Diolch. Mewn cynhadledd yn ddiweddar, awgrymodd yr Arglwydd Kerr, awdur erthygl 50 ac Ysgrifennydd Parhaol blaenorol y Swyddfa Dramor, fod erthygl 50 yn ddirymadwy yn wir, a bod llawer o arweinwyr gwleidyddol wedi ein hannog i newid ein meddyliau, gan gynnwys Macron, Schäuble a Rutte. Hyd yn oed os ydych wedi rhoi gwybod i’r UE eich bod yn bwriadu gadael, awgrymodd nad oes dim i ddweud bod yn rhaid inni adael, ond dywedodd y gallai fod pris gwleidyddol i’w dalu am hynny. Nawr, ni waeth am y cymhlethdodau a’r materion sy’n ymwneud â chywirdeb neu anghywirdeb y posibilrwydd o ddirymu erthygl 50, a allai’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol roi ei asesiad cyfreithiol i ni ynglŷn ag a yw dehongliad yr Arglwydd Kerr yn gywir?

Well, what I can say is that the position that was adopted by the UK Government in the Miller case—the article 50 case—was very clear: that it was not revocable. Of course, the ultimate body that would determine the legality of that would be the European Court of Justice, but as a matter of general principles and agreement with regard to the European Union, any agreement that has the consent of all the members of the European Union can achieve almost any position that is wanted to achieve.

Wel, yr hyn y gallaf ei ddweud yw bod y safbwynt a fabwysiadwyd gan Lywodraeth y DU yn achos Miller—yr achos erthygl 50—yn glir iawn: nad oedd yn ddirymadwy. Wrth gwrs, y corff a fyddai’n penderfynu cyfreithlondeb hynny yn y pen draw fyddai Llys Cyfiawnder Ewrop, ond fel mater o egwyddor gyffredinol a chytundeb mewn perthynas â’r Undeb Ewropeaidd, gall unrhyw gytundeb sydd â chydsyniad pob aelod o’r Undeb Ewropeaidd gyflawni bron unrhyw safbwynt a ddymunir.

Is the Counsel General aware that Lord Kerr’s own record of involvement and support for the European Union is almost as lengthy as Eluned Morgan, and perhaps his view on the revocability or otherwise of article 50 might be seen in that light. I was disappointed that the Counsel General was drawn rather further on his second response than he was in the first, because isn’t it the case that this consideration of revoking article 50 is essentially against the national interest because it undermines the UK Government’s negotiating strategy, it holds out the European Union possibility that we or Labour, as they might wish, might seek to revoke the decision of the British people in a referendum, and makes it less likely that we will get offered by the European Union a good deal that will be in the interests of Wales and the United Kingdom?

A yw’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol yn ymwybodol fod hanes cyfranogiad a chefnogaeth yr Arglwydd Kerr i’r Undeb Ewropeaidd bron mor hir ag un Eluned Morgan, ac efallai y gallai ei farn ar ddirymadwyedd erthygl 50 neu fel arall gael ei gweld yn y golau hwnnw? Roeddwn yn siomedig fod y Cwnsler Cyffredinol wedi mynd rywfaint pellach yn ei ail ymateb nag yn ei ymateb cyntaf, oherwydd onid yw’n wir fod ystyriaeth o’r fath ynglŷn â diddymu erthygl 50 yn ei hanfod yn erbyn y lles cenedlaethol am ei fod yn tanseilio strategaeth negodi Llywodraeth y DU, mae’n rhoi awgrym i’r Undeb Ewropeaidd ei bod yn bosibl y gallem ni neu’r Blaid Lafur, pe baent yn dymuno, geisio dirymu penderfyniad pobl Prydain mewn refferendwm, ac mae’n ei gwneud yn llai tebygol y bydd yr Undeb Ewropeaidd yn cynnig cytundeb da i ni sydd er lles Cymru a’r Deyrnas Unedig?

Well, it seems to me that the capacity of the UK Government to put forward any consistent position with regard to the EU negotiations at the moment is very much in doubt. The issue that’s being put to me in the question is: what is the status of the article 50 notification that has been given?

The UK Government has already expressed its own opinion in respect of the statements it made in the Supreme Court with regard to that. But, of course, the matter was never pursued further and, ultimately, the European Court of Justice, which the UK Government wants to break all links with, would be the ultimate determinant of the legal interpretation of that. But, as a matter of factor, many decisions with regard to the European Union are based on the consent of all the individual member states. That is how laws are ultimately made. Any proposals that were made would ultimately be a matter of negotiation and agreement with all individual member states.

Wel, mae’n ymddangos i mi fod gallu Llywodraeth y DU i gyflwyno unrhyw safbwynt cyson o ran eu trafodaethau gyda’r UE ar hyn o bryd yn hynod o amheus. Y mater y gofynnir i mi yn ei gylch yn y cwestiwn yw: beth yw statws yr hysbysiad erthygl 50 sydd wedi cael ei roi?.

Mae Llywodraeth y DU eisoes wedi mynegi ei barn ei hun ar y datganiadau a wnaeth yn y Goruchaf Lys mewn perthynas â hynny. Ond wrth gwrs, ni aethpwyd ar drywydd y mater ymhellach ac yn y pen draw, Llys Cyfiawnder Ewrop, y mae Llywodraeth y DU yn awyddus i dorri pob cysylltiad ag ef, a fyddai’n penderfynu ar y dehongliad cyfreithiol o hynny yn y pen draw. Ond mewn gwirionedd, mae llawer o benderfyniadau mewn perthynas â’r Undeb Ewropeaidd yn seiliedig ar gydsyniad yr holl aelod-wladwriaethau unigol. Dyna sut y mae deddfau’n cael eu creu yn y pen draw. Byddai angen i’r holl aelod-wladwriaethau unigol yn y pen draw drafod a chytuno ar unrhyw gynigion a fyddai’n cael eu gwneud.

As I understand it, the Labour Party is committed to withdrawal from the European Union, pursuant to the decision of the British people in the referendum last year. So, isn’t this question a bit like those medieval questions, which concerned how many angels could dance on the head of a pin?

Yn ôl yr hyn a ddeallaf, mae’r Blaid Lafur wedi ymrwymo i adael yr Undeb Ewropeaidd, yn unol â phenderfyniad pobl Prydain yn y refferendwm y llynedd. Felly, onid yw’r cwestiwn hwn yn debyg i’r cwestiynau canoloesol hynny, a oedd yn gofyn faint o angylion a allai ddawnsio ar ben pin?

Well, I don’t know whether that was a question that actually wanted an answer or not. The Member makes a point; he’s made his views very clear over a period of time. All I’ve done is to set out, I think, the statement of facts, as to what the position is with article 50 and in terms of the position that was adopted by the UK Government.

Wel, nid wyf yn gwybod a oedd hwnnw’n gwestiwn a oedd eisiau cael ei ateb ai peidio mewn gwirionedd. Mae’r Aelod yn gwneud pwynt; mae wedi gwneud ei safbwynt yn glir iawn dros gyfnod o amser. Yr hyn rwyf wedi’i wneud, rwy’n credu, yw gosod y ffeithiau o ran beth yw’r sefyllfa gydag erthygl 50 ac o ran y safbwynt a fabwysiadwyd gan Lywodraeth y DU.

Y Bil Diddymu Mawr

The Great Repeal Bill

3. Pa drafodaethau y mae’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol wedi’u cael am yr effaith y bydd y Bil diddymu mawr yn ei chael ar Gymru? OAQ(5)0044(CG)[W]

3. What discussions has the Counsel General had regarding the impact that the great repeal Bill will have on Wales? OAQ(5)0044(CG)[W]

This question engages the law officers’ convention. Nevertheless, I can assure Members that the Welsh Government will work tirelessly to ensure that Wales’s position is protected. We will need to carefully consider the impact that the Bill will have on Welsh legislation and the competence of this Assembly.

Mae’r cwestiwn yn amodol ar gonfensiwn swyddogion y gyfraith. Er hynny, gallaf sicrhau’r Aelodau y bydd Llywodraeth Cymru yn gweithio’n ddiflino i sicrhau bod sefyllfa Cymru yn cael ei diogelu. Bydd angen i ni ystyried yr effaith y bydd y Bil yn ei chael ar ddeddfwriaeth Cymru a chymhwysedd y Cynulliad hwn yn ofalus.

I thank the Counsel General for his reply. Obviously, when I was tabling this question, I was half hoping we’d have seen the repeal Bill—we’ll get to see it tomorrow, my understanding is. And, if the rumours around the Bill are correct, then what we will see is a replacement of the European Union with some sort of concept of a United Kingdom kind of framework, and we will not, in fact, see the devolution of those powers that are held now at a European level but which relate to fully devolved responsibilities here in Wales. That includes fisheries, which we’ve just discussed, but it also includes agriculture and the environment.

Now, if it is the case that such a Bill doesn’t allow for that flow of devolution, surely two things should be considered by the Welsh Government. One is a continuity Bill, which has been Plaid Cymru’s suggestion for several months now, and, secondly, is the use of a mechanism such as the Joint Ministerial Committee to ensure that no further movement is done on the repeal Bill without the agreement of this Assembly, and, indeed, the other devolved legislatures in the United Kingdom. So, he won’t give me the legal advice—I understand that—but can he confirm that he has given legal advice, ‘yes’ or ‘no’, to the Welsh Government on a continuity Bill? And what is the Welsh Government’s view now on the operation of the JMC to ensure that there is a strong Welsh voice in decisions around the repeal Bill?

Diolch yn fawr i’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol am ei ateb. Yn amlwg, pan oeddwn yn cyflwyno’r cwestiwn, roeddwn yn hanner gobeithio y byddem wedi gweld y Bil diddymu—byddwn yn cael ei weld yfory, yn ôl yr hyn rwy’n ei ddeall. Ac os yw’r sibrydion ynglŷn â’r Bil yn wir, yna yr hyn a welwn fydd rhyw fath o gysyniad o fframwaith tebyg i’r Deyrnas Unedig yn disodli’r Undeb Ewropeaidd, ac ni fyddwn, mewn gwirionedd, yn gweld datganoli’r pwerau a ddelir ar lefel Ewropeaidd yn awr ond sy’n ymwneud â chyfrifoldebau datganoledig llawn yma yng Nghymru. Mae hynny’n cynnwys pysgodfeydd, a drafodwyd gennym yn awr, ond mae hefyd yn cynnwys amaethyddiaeth a’r amgylchedd.

Nawr, os yw’n wir nad yw Bil o’r fath yn caniatáu ar gyfer y llif datganoli hwnnw, yn sicr dylai Llywodraeth Cymru ystyried dau beth. Y cyntaf yw Bil parhad, sydd wedi cael ei awgrymu gan Blaid Cymru ers nifer o fisoedd bellach, a’r ail yw’r defnydd o fecanwaith megis y Cyd-bwyllgor Gweinidogion i sicrhau nad oes unrhyw gamau pellach yn cael eu rhoi ar waith mewn perthynas â’r Bil diddymu heb gytundeb y Cynulliad hwn, ac yn wir, y deddfwrfeydd datganoledig eraill yn y Deyrnas Unedig. Felly, nid yw am roi’r cyngor cyfreithiol i mi—gallaf ddeall hynny—ond a all gadarnhau ei fod wedi rhoi cyngor cyfreithiol, ‘ie’ neu ‘na’, i Lywodraeth Cymru ar Fil parhad? A beth yw barn Llywodraeth Cymru yn awr ar weithrediad y Cyd-bwyllgor Gweinidogion er mwyn sicrhau bod yna lais Cymreig cryf mewn penderfyniadau sy’n ymwneud â’r Bil diddymu?

Well, it’s not appropriate for me to comment on whether I have or have not given legal advice on any specific issue. But the Member makes a very important point about the fundamental principles of what that Bill will be. The Member will have heard, as has previously been commented on, that a number of commitments have been given in the House of Commons that it will require the consent of the devolved Governments. That was made by David Davis himself, and I think was also made yesterday in response to the question from Jonathan Edwards. That is, as we would expect, that any matter that impacts on the powers and responsibilities of this place will require legislative consent, and that is a matter that Welsh Government is determined to hold the Government committed to.

The First Minister, and others, have previously outlined what are the fundamental principles in respect of what we expect to see in any repeal Bill, and that is that the UK Government must recognise that any powers in the devolved field, currently held at EU level, must be exercised at a devolved level, unless there is a clear and agreed reason for them to be held by the UK Government. And, in that event, then there must be a mechanism for co-decision making in these areas, and that is the point that you’ve obviously raised there, with how those matters are actually determined. These are fundamental principles as far as Welsh Government and this Assembly is concerned, and those are ones that we would expect to be honoured and respected in whatever legislation is proposed tomorrow.

Wel, nid yw’n briodol i mi wneud sylwadau ynglŷn ag a wyf wedi rhoi cyngor cyfreithiol ar unrhyw fater penodol ai peidio. Ond mae’r Aelod yn gwneud pwynt pwysig iawn ynghylch egwyddorion sylfaenol yr hyn a fydd y Bil. Bydd yr Aelod wedi clywed, fel y soniwyd yn flaenorol, fod nifer o ymrwymiadau wedi cael eu gwneud yn Nhŷ’r Cyffredin y bydd yn galw am gydsyniad y Llywodraethau datganoledig. Cafodd hynny ei wneud gan David Davis ei hun, ac rwy’n credu ei fod hefyd wedi’i wneud ddoe mewn ymateb i’r cwestiwn gan Jonathan Edwards. A hynny, fel y byddem yn ei ddisgwyl, yw y bydd unrhyw fater sy’n effeithio ar bwerau a chyfrifoldebau’r lle hwn yn galw am gydsyniad deddfwriaethol, ac mae hwnnw’n fater y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn benderfynol o sicrhau bod y Llywodraeth yn ymrwymo iddo.

Mae Prif Weinidog Cymru ac eraill wedi amlinellu o’r blaen beth yw’r egwyddorion sylfaenol o ran yr hyn y disgwyliwn ei weld mewn unrhyw Fil diddymu, sef bod yn rhaid i Lywodraeth y DU gydnabod y rheidrwydd i unrhyw bwerau yn y maes datganoledig a ddelir ar hyn o bryd ar lefel yr UE gael eu harfer ar lefel ddatganoledig, oni bai bod rheswm clir wedi’i gytuno iddynt gael eu cadw gan Lywodraeth y DU. Ac os felly, yna mae’n rhaid cael mecanwaith ar gyfer gwneud penderfyniadau ar y cyd yn y meysydd hyn, a dyna’r pwynt rydych chi’n amlwg wedi ei godi yno, gyda’r ffordd y caiff y materion hynny eu penderfynu mewn gwirionedd. Mae’r rhain yn egwyddorion sylfaenol o ran Llywodraeth Cymru a’r Cynulliad hwn, ac yn rhai y byddem yn disgwyl iddynt gael eu hanrhydeddu a’u parchu ym mha ddeddfwriaeth bynnag a argymhellir yfory.

Bil Diddymu Llywodraeth y DU

The UK Government’s Repeal Bill

4. Pa drafodaethau y mae’r Cwnsler Cyffredinol wedi’u cael ynghylch y goblygiadau cyfreithiol i Gymru o Fil diddymu Llywodraeth y DU? OAQ(5)0043(CG)

4. What discussions has the Counsel General had in respect of the legal implications for Wales of the UK Government’s repeal Bill? OAQ(5)0043(CG)

I refer to my response to the previous question. As before, this question engages the law officers’ convention. I reiterate the fact that we will work to ensure that Wales’s position is protected, and that will necessarily include consideration of the Bill for its implications on our devolution settlement.

Cyfeiriaf at fy ateb i’r cwestiwn blaenorol. Fel cynt, mae’r cwestiwn hwn yn amodol ar gonfensiwn swyddogion y gyfraith. Ailadroddaf y ffaith y byddwn yn gweithio i sicrhau bod sefyllfa Cymru yn cael ei diogelu, a bydd hynny o reidrwydd yn cynnwys ystyriaeth o’r Bil o ran ei oblygiadau i’n setliad datganoli.

That’s rather more than I expected, actually, and an improvement on your predecessor, who would have stopped after the first three words. Can I perhaps raise a supplementary question to the answer you gave to Simon Thomas, where you said that the great repeal Bill must be subject to a legislative consent motion from this Assembly? What happens if we don’t say ‘yes’?

Mae hynny ychydig yn fwy nag oeddwn wedi ei ddisgwyl, mewn gwirionedd, ac yn well na’ch rhagflaenydd, a fyddai wedi rhoi’r gorau iddi ar ôl y tri gair cyntaf. A gaf fi efallai ofyn cwestiwn atodol yn dilyn yr ateb a roesoch i Simon Thomas, lle roeddech yn dweud bod yn rhaid i’r Bil diddymu mawr fod yn ddarostyngedig i gynnig cydsyniad deddfwriaethol yn y Cynulliad hwn? Beth fydd yn digwydd os nad ydym yn dweud ‘ie’?

If we don’t say ‘yes’, then if the statements that have been made in the House of Commons are to be relied upon, that would be the end of the matter. If you’re asking in more detail about the position with regard to the Sewel convention, well, of course, I’ve given a statement on that previously. I think we come back to basics on this. What are the basic powers and responsibilities of this place and other devolved Governments within the way the constitutional structure of the United Kingdom is presently formed? What impact will the repeal Bill have, if any, on that? Does it, or does it not require the consent? Well, the UK Government has said that the consent will be required. That is a commitment that we will hold them to. We would expect the UK Government to want to proceed in the whole issue of Brexit with the agreement and consent of all the devolved administrations, because, ultimately, that is the only way in which it can succeed and retain the unity and integrity of the United Kingdom. So, those are commitments that I think have to be honoured and that Welsh Government would expect to be honoured.

Os nad ydym yn dweud ‘ie’, yna os ydym yn dibynnu ar y datganiadau a wnaed yn Nhŷ’r Cyffredin, byddai hynny’n ddiwedd ar y mater. Os ydych yn gofyn yn fwy manwl am y sefyllfa mewn perthynas â chonfensiwn Sewel, wel, wrth gwrs, rwyf wedi gwneud datganiad ar hynny o’r blaen. Rwy’n credu ein bod yn dychwelyd at y pethau sylfaenol gyda hyn. Beth yw pwerau a chyfrifoldebau sylfaenol y lle hwn a Llywodraethau datganoledig eraill yn y ffordd y mae strwythur cyfansoddiadol y Deyrnas Unedig wedi’i ffurfio ar hyn o bryd? Pa effaith fydd y Bil diddymu yn ei chael ar hynny, os o gwbl? A yw’n gwneud y cydsyniad yn ofynnol ai peidio? Wel, mae Llywodraeth y DU wedi dweud y bydd y cydsyniad yn ofynnol. Dyna ymrwymiad y byddwn yn mynnu eu bod yn ei gadw. Byddem yn disgwyl y bydd Llywodraeth y DU eisiau symud ymlaen â mater Brexit gyda chytundeb a chydsyniad yr holl weinyddiaethau datganoledig, oherwydd, yn y pen draw, dyna’r unig ffordd y gall lwyddo a chadw undod a chyfanrwydd y Deyrnas Unedig. Felly, rwy’n credu bod y rheiny’n ymrwymiadau sy’n rhaid eu hanrhydeddu ac y byddai Llywodraeth Cymru yn disgwyl iddynt gael eu hanrhydeddu.

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

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.

Yr eitem nesaf yw’r cwestiynau amserol, a’r cwestiwn cyntaf, Julie Morgan.

The next item is topical questions, and the first question comes from Julie Morgan.

Ymchwiliad i Waed Halogedig

Contaminated Blood Inquiry

Beth yw’r goblygiadau i Gymru yn dilyn y penderfyniad i gynnal ymchwiliad cyhoeddus i’r sgandal gwaed halogedig? TAQ(5)0200(HWS)

What are the implications for Wales following the decision to hold a public inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal? TAQ(5)0200(HWS)

Thank you for the question. I welcome the announcement yesterday by the United Kingdom Government of a UK-wide inquiry into the circumstances of this tragedy. We all need to know the truth about what happened. That’s why it’s important that those affected have their say about the inquiry’s approach and remit. I’ve previously called for such an inquiry, and I’ve written today to the Secretary of State for Health, and I expect full engagement with those affected in Wales.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Rwy’n croesawu’r cyhoeddiad a wnaed ddoe gan Lywodraeth y Deyrnas Unedig am ymchwiliad DU gyfan i amgylchiadau’r drasiedi hon. Mae angen i bawb ohonom wybod y gwir am yr hyn a ddigwyddodd. Dyna pam ei bod yn bwysig fod y rhai yr effeithiwyd arnynt yn cael lleisio barn am ddull gweithredu a chylch gwaith yr ymchwiliad. Rwyf wedi galw am ymchwiliad o’r fath o’r blaen, ac rwyf wedi ysgrifennu heddiw at yr Ysgrifennydd Gwladol dros Iechyd, ac rwy’n disgwyl ymgysylltiad llawn â’r rhai yr effeithiwyd arnynt yng Nghymru.

I thank the Cabinet Secretary for that response. Campaigners and members of the Assembly cross-party group on haemophilia and contaminated blood, many of whom have campaigned for 30 years for this public inquiry, have told me that the inquiry must have the power to compel witnesses, as previous inquiries did not. There must be full disclosure of documents, because it’s alleged that some of these have been destroyed and that medical records were destroyed or tampered with. They want to know why blood products continued to be used, and warnings were ignored and patients weren’t informed of the risks; why alternative treatments weren’t used; why mild haemophiliacs were treated with concentrates; why commercial interests took precedence over public safety; why money allocated for self-sufficiency in blood was reallocated elsewhere; why self-sufficiency of blood supplies took 13 years in the UK but only five years in Ireland; why Lord Owen and Lord Jenkins’s departmental papers were destroyed, under a 10-year rule which does not exist. They want to know information about the Department of Health’s inaccurate self-sufficiency in blood products report, which was published in 2006, and they also want the role of the pharmaceutical companies to be investigated. Those are some of the issues.

How is the Cabinet Secretary going to use his role to ensure that these people who have suffered so much—. Bearing in mind that 70 people in Wales died, 273 were infected, and so many others have had their lives ruined, how will you be able to ensure that they have their say in the process, that they are able to have their voices heard? The Prime Minister has said that she wants an inquiry that will be what the families want, and I think it is absolutely essential that people from Wales do have their say.

Finally, I think that you have partly covered this, but did the Prime Minister or the Health Secretary contact you before actually making this announcement yesterday? I note that you have written to Jeremy Hunt today, but how do you see your involvement in how this inquiry is going to shape up? Because we do know that there have been quite a lot of difficulties in deciding on types of inquiries for disasters that have happened. Obviously, I think it’s crucial that this comes out with clear answers because the people who have been affected in this tragic way deserve the truth?

Diolch i Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet am yr ymateb hwnnw. Mae ymgyrchwyr ac aelodau o grŵp trawsbleidiol y Cynulliad ar hemoffilia a gwaed halogedig, y bu llawer ohonynt yn ymgyrchu am yr ymchwiliad cyhoeddus hwn ers 30 mlynedd, wedi dweud wrthyf fod yn rhaid i’r ymchwiliad gael y pŵer i orfodi tystion i roi tystiolaeth, yn wahanol i ymchwiliadau blaenorol. Mae’n rhaid sicrhau bod dogfennau’n cael eu datgelu’n llawn, gan fod honiadau fod rhai o’r rhain wedi cael eu dinistrio, a bod cofnodion meddygol wedi cael eu dinistrio neu fod rhywrai wedi ymyrryd â hwy. Maent eisiau gwybod pam fod cynhyrchion gwaed wedi parhau i gael eu defnyddio, a pham fod rhybuddion wedi cael eu hanwybyddu a pham na chafodd cleifion wybod am y peryglon; pam na ddefnyddiwyd triniaethau amgen; pam fod pobl â ffurf ysgafn ar hemoffilia wedi cael eu trin â chrynodiadau; pam fod buddiannau masnachol wedi cael blaenoriaeth dros ddiogelwch y cyhoedd; pam fod arian a ddyrannwyd ar gyfer hunangynhaliaeth mewn gwaed wedi cael ei ailddyrannu i rywle arall; pam fod hunangynhaliaeth mewn cyflenwadau gwaed wedi cymryd 13 mlynedd yn y DU ond pum mlynedd yn unig yn yr Iwerddon; pam fod papurau adrannol yr Arglwydd Owen a’r Arglwydd Jenkins wedi cael eu dinistrio o dan reol 10 mlynedd nad yw’n bodoli. Maent eisiau gwybodaeth am adroddiad gwallus yr Adran Iechyd ar hunangynhaliaeth mewn cynhyrchion gwaed, a gyhoeddwyd yn 2006, ac maent hefyd yn galw am ymchwiliad i rôl y cwmnïau fferyllol. Dyna rai o’r materion sy’n codi.

Sut y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn mynd i ddefnyddio ei rôl i sicrhau bod y bobl hyn sydd wedi dioddef cymaint—. O gofio bod 70 o bobl yng Nghymru wedi marw, bod 273 wedi’u heintio, a bod bywydau cymaint o bobl eraill wedi cael eu difetha, sut y gallwch sicrhau y byddant yn cael lleisio barn yn y broses, y byddant yn gallu cael eu clywed? Mae’r Prif Weinidog wedi dweud ei bod eisiau ymchwiliad a fydd yn adlewyrchu’r hyn y mae’r teuluoedd ei eisiau, ac rwy’n credu ei bod yn gwbl hanfodol fod pobl o Gymru yn cael lleisio barn.

Yn olaf, rwy’n credu eich bod wedi ymdrin â hyn yn rhannol, ond a wnaeth y Prif Weinidog neu’r Ysgrifennydd Iechyd gysylltu â chi cyn gwneud y cyhoeddiad hwn ddoe? Nodaf eich bod wedi ysgrifennu at Jeremy Hunt heddiw, ond pa ran fydd gennych yn y modd y bydd yr ymchwiliad hwn yn cael ei lunio? Oherwydd fe wyddom fod cryn dipyn o anawsterau wedi bod wrth benderfynu ar fathau o ymchwiliadau ar gyfer trychinebau sydd wedi digwydd. Yn amlwg, rwy’n credu ei bod yn hanfodol fod yr ymchwiliad hwn yn cynhyrchu atebion clir oherwydd mae’r bobl yr effeithiwyd arnynt yn y modd enbyd hwn yn haeddu’r gwir?

Thank you for the question. I ought to start by recognising, in response, not just Julie Morgan’s role in campaigning on this issue whilst a Member of this Assembly and as chair of the cross-party group, but also from her previous years in Parliament, with a real and active interest in this issue and the scandal that has affected people right across the United Kingdom, including here in Wales.

This has been an issue where, again, there’s been cross-party interest both in Parliament and in this Assembly. I’ll start with your final point, if you like, about the links between the two Governments. I have to say that this is one where I’m hoping that there will be a more respectful relationship between the administrations. I previously wrote to Lord Prior, on 20 October 2016, about this issue, following a response the Prime Minister gave to Diana Johnson during Prime Minister’s Questions in September of that year. I didn’t receive a response. I then wrote to Jeremy Hunt on 20 December 2016 and I didn’t receive a response to that letter either. If there is to be genuinely what the UK Government have announced they want to see, which I welcome—a genuine inquiry that listens to the people directly affected and involved, and, in a response to my constituency colleague, Stephen Doughty, in Parliament yesterday, the Government again indicated that they want the devolved administrations to be properly involved—then that does mean that there needs to be a difference in approach. Rather than simply deciding the remit for themselves at the Department of Health for a UK-wide inquiry, there needs to be rather more genuine engagement not just with the Government, but with the families and the victims themselves as well. Because, if another inquiry is provided that doesn’t have the power to compel witnesses and that does not provide full and proper disclosure, that won’t just simply be a missed opportunity, but will create further anger and mistrust from a group of people who have not be well treated for many years in the past. So, the announcement is welcome, but getting it right and getting the terms right and genuinely listening to the families affected and to the devolved administrations is really important. I completely agree on the broad outline about the need for compulsion of witnesses and disclosure, and I certainly hope that we can come to a proper agreement on that so that the inquiry will retain full public confidence as it undertakes its work.

Diolch am y cwestiwn. Dylwn ddechrau drwy gydnabod, wrth ymateb, nid yn unig rôl Julie Morgan yn ymgyrchu ar y mater tra bu’n Aelod o’r Cynulliad hwn ac fel cadeirydd y grŵp trawsbleidiol, ond hefyd o’i blynyddoedd blaenorol yn y Senedd, gyda diddordeb dwfn a gweithredol yn y mater hwn a’r sgandal sydd wedi effeithio ar bobl ar draws y Deyrnas Unedig, gan gynnwys yma yng Nghymru.

Mae hon wedi bod yn broblem a enynnodd ddiddordeb trawsbleidiol, unwaith eto, yn y Senedd ac yn y Cynulliad hwn. Rwyf am ddechrau gyda’ch pwynt olaf, os hoffech, am y cysylltiadau rhwng y ddwy Lywodraeth. Mae’n rhaid i mi ddweud bod hwn yn un lle rwy’n gobeithio gweld perthynas fwy parchus rhwng y gweinyddiaethau. Ysgrifennais yn flaenorol at yr Arglwydd Prior am y mater hwn ar 20 Hydref 2016 yn dilyn ymateb a roddodd Prif Weinidog y DU i Diana Johnson yn ystod Cwestiynau i’r Prif Weinidog ym mis Medi y flwyddyn honno. Ni chefais ateb. Ysgrifennais wedyn at Jeremy Hunt ar 20 Rhagfyr 2016 ac ni chefais ateb i’r llythyr hwnnw ychwaith. Os yw’r hyn y mae Llywodraeth y DU wedi cyhoeddi eu bod am ei weld, ac rwy’n croesawu hynny, i ddwyn ffrwyth mewn gwirionedd—ymchwiliad go iawn sy’n gwrando ar y bobl yr effeithiwyd arnynt yn uniongyrchol ac sy’n rhan o hyn, ac mewn ymateb i fy nghydweithiwr etholaeth, Stephen Doughty, yn y Senedd ddoe, dangosodd y Llywodraeth unwaith eto eu bod eisiau i’r gweinyddiaethau datganoledig gymryd rhan yn briodol—yna mae hynny’n golygu bod angen cael ymagwedd wahanol. Yn hytrach na phenderfynu’n syml ar eu cylch gwaith eu hunain yn yr Adran Iechyd ar gyfer ymchwiliad ledled y DU, mae angen ymgysylltiad ychydig yn fwy dilys, nid yn unig â’r Llywodraeth, ond â’r teuluoedd a’r dioddefwyr eu hunain hefyd. Oherwydd, os ceir ymchwiliad arall heb bŵer i orfodi tystion i roi tystiolaeth ac nad yw’n darparu datgeliad llawn a phriodol, bydd yn gyfle a gollwyd, ond bydd hefyd yn creu dicter a diffyg ymddiriedaeth pellach ymhlith grŵp o bobl nad ydynt wedi cael eu trin yn dda dros nifer o flynyddoedd yn y gorffennol. Felly, mae’r cyhoeddiad i’w groesawu, ond mae ei gael yn iawn a chael y telerau’n gywir, a gwrando go iawn ar y teuluoedd yr effeithiwyd arnynt ac ar y gweinyddiaethau datganoledig yn bwysig iawn. Cytunaf yn llwyr â’r amlinelliad bras o ran yr angen i orfodi tystion a datgeliad, ac rwy’n sicr yn gobeithio y gallwn ddod i gytundeb priodol ar hynny fel bod yr ymchwiliad yn cadw hyder y cyhoedd yn llawn wrth iddo gyflawni ei waith.

Cabinet Secretary, I too would like to thank the campaigners and Julie Morgan and the cross-party group for their tenaciousness and determination in following this subject to this conclusion. ‘One of the biggest treatment disasters in the history of the NHS’, and that was the motion passed in the House of Commons in 2016, and I think it sums up the scale of this scandal exactly.

What I find almost beyond belief is the evidence that officials in the Department of Health knew or suspected that imported factor concentrates were risky as early as the 1980s, and yet the NHS continued to give that blood out or those factors out to haemophiliacs. Cabinet Secretary, will you assure us that there will be total transparency for any records that may be available either in or from Wales to aid in this inquiry?

There was, as you know, an independent inquiry instituted by Lord Morris of Manchester and it took some two years. Cabinet Secretary, will you exert what influence you can to ensure that this inquiry, whilst being thorough, is also timely? Public inquiries have a terrible reputation for getting utterly bogged down in process, but this is about people and the hurt they have suffered, and they want answers.

Will you also ensure—and I think Julie mentioned this—that the people in Wales who wish to speak or give evidence are given that opportunity? I wonder, Cabinet Secretary, if you would actually think about how we might support them to get there, and support them in giving any evidence, because I am utterly convinced that it will be an exceptionally traumatic occasion for them and if we can offer support to enable them on that journey, I think that would be a very kind thing that you, as a Government, and we, as an Assembly, could do. I’m sure that you will press for complete transparency, but could you assure us that any lessons learnt from the end of this inquiry will be implemented with rigour throughout Wales, so that this type of dreadful event can never happen again?

Finally, Cabinet Secretary, there is a question of culpability. If people are found to have been mendacious, deceitful, fraudulent, or even plain stupid, and any of it rebounds on any process, organisation, or person in Wales, I would hope that you can reassure us today that you will take appropriate action with them.

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, hoffwn innau hefyd ddiolch i’r ymgyrchwyr a Julie Morgan a’r grŵp trawsbleidiol am eu cryfder a’u penderfyniad yn dilyn y mater i’r canlyniad hwn. ‘Un o’r trychinebau gwaethaf yn ymwneud â thriniaethau yn hanes y GIG’, a dyna’r cynnig a basiwyd yn Nhŷ’r Cyffredin yn 2016, ac rwy’n credu ei fod yn crynhoi maint y sgandal hon yn berffaith.

Yr hyn rwy’n ei gael bron yn amhosibl ei gredu yw’r dystiolaeth fod swyddogion yn yr Adran Iechyd yn gwybod neu’n amau bod crynodiadau ffactor wedi’u mewnforio yn beryglus mor gynnar â’r 1980au, ac eto parhaodd y GIG i roi’r gwaed hwnnw i bobl neu’r ffactorau hynny i hemoffiligion. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a wnewch chi ein sicrhau y bydd tryloywder llwyr mewn perthynas ag unrhyw gofnodion a allai fod ar gael naill ai yng Nghymru neu o Gymru i gynorthwyo’r ymchwiliad hwn?

Fel y gwyddoch, cafwyd ymchwiliad annibynnol a sefydlwyd gan yr Arglwydd Morris o Fanceinion ac fe gymerodd tua dwy flynedd i’w gwblhau. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, a wnewch chi ymdrechu i ddefnyddio’r dylanwad sydd gennych i sicrhau bod yr ymchwiliad hwn, yn ogystal â bod yn drwyadl, hefyd yn amserol? Mae gan ymchwiliadau cyhoeddus enw drwg ofnadwy am gael eu llethu’n llwyr yn y broses, ond mae hyn yn ymwneud â phobl a’r boen y maent wedi’i dioddef, ac maent eisiau atebion.

A wnewch chi sicrhau hefyd—ac rwy’n credu bod Julie wedi crybwyll hyn—fod y bobl yng Nghymru sydd eisiau siarad neu roi tystiolaeth yn cael cyfle i wneud hynny? Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, tybed a wnewch chi ystyried mewn gwirionedd sut y gallem eu cefnogi i wneud hynny, a’u cynorthwyo i roi unrhyw dystiolaeth, oherwydd rwy’n hollol argyhoeddedig y bydd yn achlysur hynod drawmatig iddynt ac os gallwn gynnig cefnogaeth i hwyluso’r daith honno iddynt, rwy’n credu y byddai hynny’n beth caredig iawn y gallech chi, fel Llywodraeth, ac y gallem ni, fel Cynulliad, ei wneud. Rwy’n siŵr y byddwch yn pwyso am dryloywder llwyr, ond a allech ein sicrhau y bydd unrhyw wersi a gaiff eu dysgu ar ddiwedd yr ymchwiliad hwn yn cael eu rhoi ar waith yn drylwyr ledled Cymru, er mwyn sicrhau na all y math hwn o ddigwyddiad ofnadwy byth ddigwydd eto?

Yn olaf, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, mae yna gwestiwn yn codi ynglŷn ag euogrwydd. Os canfyddir bod pobl wedi bod yn gelwyddog, yn anonest, yn dwyllodrus, neu’n dwp hyd yn oed, a bod goblygiadau i hynny o ran unrhyw broses, sefydliad neu unigolyn yng Nghymru, byddwn yn gobeithio y gallwch ein sicrhau heddiw y byddwch yn rhoi camau priodol ar waith mewn perthynas â hwy.

Thank you for that series of points, which I’m happy to say I agree with. I think part of the challenge in this is not just the pain of those families who have lost someone or someone who has become infected, but, actually, much of that is exacerbated by the feeling that there has been a cover-up and that people have not been told the truth and that has not been an accident. That’s why the inquiry is necessary, and it’s also why getting the terms right is necessary as well. I genuinely think that this is not an issue where the party politics should matter. To be fair, that has not been the approach of the cross-party group either in this place or in Parliament. I understand completely the call for transparency and for full and proper co-operation, and I am happy to confirm that, from the Government’s point of view, where information from Wales is useful to that inquiry, I fully expect there to be full and proper co-operation and transparency, so that people can see that we are genuinely playing our part in trying to understand why what happened did happen. The reason why we said that there always needed to be a UK-wide inquiry is the powers that exist for the compulsion in the inquiry, but also because these events took place before devolution, and so we were not in control of what happened at that time. That’s really important for people who want the inquiry to take place.

I want to be clear about how we can support the people of Wales. That depends on the remit and the way in which the inquiry’s set up. As a UK-wide inquiry, there needs to be a proper conversation about how people are supported, about making sure that this is a genuine UK-wide inquiry, rather than, effectively, an England inquiry then substituted to cover the rest of the United Kingdom. So, that has to be a conversation that I want to have with the Department of Health, which did not contact the Welsh Government before the announcement made yesterday. That was a point that Julie Morgan asked. So, that hadn’t happened at that point in time. I’m due to speak to someone from the Department of Health next week. Again, it’s disappointing, when a UK-wide inquiry of this nature is announced, that there isn’t an earlier conversation with this Government. It is not again necessarily about parties, it is about Government-to-Government relationships, and that this isn’t appropriate.

Actually, there is a real point here about people who believe in the union actually trying to make it work. It’s frustrating when things like this happen that do not do that in a way that actually promotes the interests of the citizen, which is what this is all about. In terms of as we are now, I’m happy to confirm that, actually, the way that blood products are managed now has changed significantly, and it should not be possible for the same scandal to arise in the same way. It is always possible that people are prepared to collude with each other, but the systems we now have in place mean that blood products in Wales and across the United Kingdom are incredibly safe, and you can trace where those products have come from. So, the screening that takes place now should be a real factor for assurance for anyone who uses blood products from Wales or any other part of the United Kingdom.

On culpability, some of those matters are not within the remit of this Government, but I would expect that any of the findings are used to properly hold people to account, as well as to understand and to learn. I think that is really important. If I may say, I think that, as well as the cross-party group, it may be sensible for spokespeople from the relevant parties to have a conversation between this week and the next to see if we may be able to find an agreed form of words from each of the parties in this place to sign up to in terms of what we would like to see happen in terms of the remit and the manner in which the inquiry will run. I think that, as well as Government-to-Government conversation, all parties being able to sign up to something may be helpful for us to do as well. But I’m happy to take up that conversation with the spokespeople after today’s question.

Diolch i chi am y gyfres honno o bwyntiau, ac rwy’n falch o ddweud fy mod yn cytuno â hwy. Rwy’n credu mai rhan o’r her yn hyn yw, nid yn unig poen y teuluoedd sydd wedi colli rhywun neu rywun sydd wedi cael eu heintio, ond mewn gwirionedd, caiff llawer o hynny ei waethygu gan y teimlad fod pethau wedi cael eu cuddio ac nad yw pobl wedi dweud y gwir ac nid damwain oedd hynny. Dyna pam fod yr ymchwiliad yn angenrheidiol, a dyna pam fod cael y telerau’n gywir yn angenrheidiol hefyd. Rwy’n credu o ddifrif nad yw hwn yn fater lle y dylai gwleidyddiaeth plaid fod o bwys. I fod yn deg, nid dyna oedd agwedd y grŵp trawsbleidiol yn y lle hwn nac yn y Senedd. Rwy’n deall yr alwad am dryloywder ac am gydweithrediad llawn a phriodol yn llwyr, ac rwy’n falch o gadarnhau, o safbwynt y Llywodraeth, lle mae gwybodaeth o Gymru yn ddefnyddiol i’r ymchwiliad hwnnw, fy mod yn disgwyl y bydd cydweithrediad a thryloywder llawn, fel y gall pobl weld ein bod o ddifrif yn chwarae ein rhan i geisio deall pam y digwyddodd yr hyn a ddigwyddodd. Y rheswm pam roeddem yn dweud bob amser bod angen cynnal ymchwiliad ledled y DU yw oherwydd y pwerau sy’n bodoli ar gyfer gorfodi yn yr ymchwiliad, ond hefyd oherwydd bod y digwyddiadau hyn wedi digwydd cyn datganoli, ac felly nid oeddem yn rheoli’r hyn a ddigwyddodd ar y pryd. Mae hynny’n bwysig iawn i bobl sydd eisiau i’r ymchwiliad gael ei gynnal.

Rwyf eisiau bod yn glir ynglŷn â sut y gallwn gefnogi pobl Cymru. Mae hynny’n dibynnu ar y cylch gwaith a’r ffordd y caiff yr ymchwiliad ei sefydlu. Fel ymchwiliad a gynhelir ledled y DU, bydd angen cael sgwrs briodol ynglŷn â sut y caiff pobl eu cefnogi, ynglŷn â gwneud yn siŵr fod hwn yn ymchwiliad ar gyfer y DU gyfan mewn gwirionedd, yn hytrach nag ymchwiliad yn Lloegr a fydd wedyn yn cael ei ddefnyddio i gwmpasu gweddill y Deyrnas Unedig i bob pwrpas. Felly, mae’n rhaid i honno fod yn sgwrs rwyf am ei chael gyda’r Adran Iechyd, na chysylltodd â Llywodraeth Cymru cyn i’r cyhoeddiad gael ei wneud ddoe. Roedd hwnnw’n bwynt y gofynnodd Julie Morgan yn ei gylch. Felly, nid oedd hynny wedi digwydd ar yr adeg honno. Rwyf i fod i siarad â rhywun o’r Adran Iechyd yr wythnos nesaf. Unwaith eto, mae’n siomedig, pan fo ymchwiliad DU gyfan o’r math hwn yn cael ei gyhoeddi, na chafwyd sgwrs yn gynharach gyda’r Llywodraeth hon. Unwaith eto, nid yw’n ymwneud â phleidiau o reidrwydd, mae’n ymwneud â’r berthynas rhwng un Llywodraeth a’r llall, a’r ffaith nad yw hyn yn briodol.

Mewn gwirionedd, mae pwynt go iawn yma am bobl sy’n credu yn yr undeb yn ceisio gwneud iddo weithio. Mae’n rhwystredig pan fo pethau fel hyn yn digwydd nad ydynt yn gwneud hynny mewn ffordd sydd, mewn gwirionedd, yn hyrwyddo buddiannau’r dinesydd, ac ymwneud â hynny y mae hyn oll. O ran ein sefyllfa yn awr, rwy’n hapus i gadarnhau, mewn gwirionedd, fod y ffordd y mae cynhyrchion gwaed yn cael eu rheoli erbyn hyn wedi newid yn sylweddol, ac ni ddylai fod yn bosibl i’r un sgandal ddigwydd yn yr un ffordd. Mae hi bob amser yn bosibl fod pobl yn barod i gydgynllwynio â’i gilydd, ond mae’r systemau sydd gennym ar waith bellach yn golygu bod cynhyrchion gwaed yng Nghymru a ledled y Deyrnas Unedig yn anhygoel o ddiogel, a gallwch olrhain o ble y daw’r cynhyrchion hynny. Felly, dylai’r sgrinio sy’n digwydd yn awr fod yn ffactor go iawn ar gyfer sicrhau unrhyw un sy’n defnyddio cynhyrchion gwaed o Gymru neu o unrhyw ran arall o’r Deyrnas Unedig.

O ran euogrwydd, nid yw rhai o’r materion hynny o fewn cylch gwaith y Llywodraeth hon, ond byddwn yn disgwyl y bydd unrhyw ganfyddiadau yn cael eu defnyddio i ddwyn pobl i gyfrif yn briodol, yn ogystal ag i ddeall ac i ddysgu. Credaf fod hynny’n wirioneddol bwysig. Os caf ddweud, rwy’n credu, yn ogystal â’r grŵp trawsbleidiol, y gallai fod yn ddoeth i lefarwyr y pleidiau perthnasol gael sgwrs rhwng yr wythnos hon a’r nesaf i weld a yw’n bosibl i ni ddod o hyd i eiriad y mae pob un o’r pleidiau yn y lle hwn yn cytuno arno o ran yr hyn yr hoffem ei weld yn digwydd mewn perthynas â’r cylch gwaith a’r modd y caiff yr ymchwiliad ei gynnal. Yn ogystal â sgwrs rhwng un Llywodraeth a’r llall, credaf y bydd cael pob plaid i gytuno ar rywbeth yn ddefnyddiol i ni ei wneud hefyd. Ond rwy’n hapus i gael y sgwrs honno gyda’r llefarwyr ar ôl y cwestiwn heddiw.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Norman and Jennifer Hutchinson, my constituents, who have very gently kept up the pressure on me to keep up the pressure, along with Julie Morgan and others here in this Chamber, on the UK Government to press ahead and help get us to this point. We’re not there yet, as Norman and Jennifer said last night to me. With the right leadership on the panel and the right remit, we could achieve the justice that is so badly needed. So, we need to make sure that we have those assurances now. Now, in thanking them, I’d like to also place on the record my admiration, as well as thanks, to all the families of those affected by this scandal for their steady determination to help over many years to get us to this point. In welcoming the offer of the Cabinet Secretary to work on perhaps a joint position across parties here—because this has been a cross-party approach—can I ask him if he will also make sure that he ensures that the families continue to be able to feed into him and his department in guiding him in how they approach UK Government over this matter to ensure that this is more than the potential of closure, but that this does resolve and answer the questions that have been so desperately needed to be asked for so many years?

Hoffwn fanteisio ar y cyfle hwn i ddiolch i Norman a Jennifer Hutchinson, fy etholwyr, sydd wedi dal ati i bwyso’n dyner arnaf i barhau i bwyso, ynghyd â Julie Morgan ac eraill yma yn y Siambr, ar Lywodraeth y DU i fwrw ymlaen â’r gwaith a’n helpu i gyrraedd y pwynt hwn. Nid ydym wedi cyrraedd yno eto, fel y dywedodd Norman a Jennifer wrthyf neithiwr. Gyda’r arweinyddiaeth gywir ar y panel a’r cylch gwaith cywir, gallem sicrhau’r cyfiawnder y mae cymaint o’i angen. Felly, mae angen i ni wneud yn siŵr ein bod yn cael y sicrwydd hwnnw yn awr. Nawr, wrth ddiolch iddynt, hoffwn gofnodi fy edmygedd hefyd, yn ogystal â fy niolch, i holl deuluoedd y rhai yr effeithiwyd arnynt gan y sgandal hon am eu penderfyniad cyson dros nifer o flynyddoedd i’n helpu i gyrraedd y pwynt hwn. Wrth groesawu cynnig Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet i weithio ar safbwynt ar y cyd o bosibl ar draws y pleidiau yma—oherwydd mae hon wedi bod yn ymdrech drawsbleidiol—a gaf fi ofyn iddo wneud yn siŵr hefyd ei fod yn sicrhau bod y teuluoedd yn parhau i allu bwydo gwybodaeth iddo ef a’i adran a rhoi arweiniad ar sut i ymwneud â Llywodraeth y DU ynglŷn â’r mater hwn er mwyn sicrhau bod hyn yn fwy na phosibilrwydd o roi diwedd ar y mater, ond ei fod yn datrys ac yn ateb y cwestiynau y mae angen mor daer wedi bod i’w gofyn ers cynifer o flynyddoedd?

Thank you for those points, Rhun. Again, I know you’re a member of the cross-party group as well and have taken a genuine interest in this issue. I, too, share the admiration of not just yourself but other Members in the Chamber for the tenacity of people who have not given up, not just on fighting for an individual cause for them and their family, but for a much wider cause that affected many other people across Wales and the United Kingdom. I also welcome your constructive approach to actually the potential for a cross-party letter as well. I think that could be very helpful.

In terms of the position of Welsh families, I’ve made clear that I want to make sure that families are directly and properly involved. And, of course, as a Government, we’ll need to talk to those people to give them an opportunity to tell us what they want to see, as well as directly trying to speak to the UK Government. I think, in the position that we take up as a Government, what we want to make sure is that we’re genuinely speaking on behalf of those families that have been directly affected. So, I am giving thought to how we do that. We have the ability to directly contact those families and to see what they want to do, as well as the Haemophilia Society and other support groups that already exist to support a number of those families. I have in mind the 10 points the Haemophilia Society have already set out previously for their position on the inquiry. So, that’s a helpful start for us as well, but we need to check whether there are other issues that families directly want to have brought up in the ongoing and unfinished conversation about the membership of the inquiry and its remit.

Diolch i chi am y pwyntiau hynny, Rhun. Unwaith eto, rwy’n gwybod eich bod yn aelod o’r grŵp trawsbleidiol hefyd ac wedi bod â diddordeb gwirioneddol yn y mater hwn. Rwyf fi, hefyd, yn rhannu’r edmygedd hwn sydd gennych chi ac Aelodau eraill yn y Siambr o gryfder pobl nad ydynt wedi rhoi’r gorau iddi, nid yn unig o ran ymladd dros eu hachos unigol hwy a’u teulu, ond dros achos llawer ehangach a effeithiodd ar lawer o bobl eraill ledled Cymru a’r Deyrnas Unedig. Rwyf hefyd yn croesawu eich ymagwedd adeiladol tuag at y posibilrwydd o lythyr trawsbleidiol yn ogystal. Rwy’n credu y gallai fod yn ddefnyddiol iawn.

O ran sefyllfa teuluoedd yng Nghymru, rwyf wedi dweud yn glir fy mod eisiau gwneud yn siŵr fod teuluoedd yn cael eu cynnwys yn uniongyrchol ac yn briodol. Ac wrth gwrs, fel Llywodraeth, bydd angen i ni siarad â’r bobl hynny i roi cyfle iddynt ddweud wrthym beth y maent eisiau ei weld, yn ogystal â cheisio siarad yn uniongyrchol â Llywodraeth y DU. Rwy’n credu, o ran ein safbwynt fel Llywodraeth, mai’r hyn rydym eisiau ei sicrhau yw ein bod o ddifrif yn siarad ar ran y teuluoedd yr effeithiwyd arnynt yn uniongyrchol. Felly, rwy’n ystyried sut y gallwn wneud hynny. Mae gennym y gallu i gysylltu â’r teuluoedd hynny’n uniongyrchol ac i weld beth y maent eisiau ei wneud, yn ogystal â’r Gymdeithas Hemoffilia a grwpiau cymorth eraill sydd eisoes yn bodoli i gefnogi nifer o’r teuluoedd hynny. Rwy’n meddwl am y 10 pwynt a nodwyd eisoes gan y Gymdeithas Hemoffilia o ran eu safbwynt ar yr ymchwiliad. Felly, mae hwnnw’n ddechrau defnyddiol i ni hefyd, ond mae angen i ni weld a oes materion eraill y mae teuluoedd yn dymuno eu codi’n uniongyrchol yn y drafodaeth barhaus anorffenedig ynglŷn ag aelodaeth yr ymchwiliad a’i gylch gwaith.

I’d like to first of all thank Julie, the cross-party group, and everyone else who was involved in bringing about this inquiry. Cabinet Secretary, I think it’s wonderful news that we are finally getting a public inquiry into this terrible scandal. My close friend, Faye Denny, lost her brother, Owen Denny, who died as a result of contaminated blood. Now, Owen, and his family and the thousands of other families who were affected by this terrible scandal, will hopefully finally get justice. The NHS is there to save lives, and it very often does, but it totally failed Owen and many people like him on this occasion. So, this dark period in history now needs to be fully investigated, and we must ensure that it can never happen again. We must also ensure that the voices of Welsh victims and their families are heard. Will you work with the Welsh Government to ensure the inquiry can deliver the truth about this appalling injustice, a truth that is fully transparent at all times? Thank you.

Yn gyntaf oll, hoffwn ddiolch i Julie, y grŵp trawsbleidiol, a phawb arall a oedd yn rhan o’r gwaith o sicrhau bod yr ymchwiliad hwn yn digwydd. Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwy’n credu ei fod yn newyddion gwych ein bod, o’r diwedd, yn cael ymchwiliad cyhoeddus i’r sgandal ofnadwy hon. Collodd fy ffrind agos, Faye Denny, ei brawd, Owen Denny, a fu farw o ganlyniad i waed halogedig. Yn awr, y gobaith yw y bydd Owen, a’i deulu a miloedd o deuluoedd eraill yr effeithiwyd arnynt gan y sgandal ofnadwy hon, yn cael cyfiawnder o’r diwedd. Mae’r GIG yno i achub bywydau, ac mae’n aml iawn yn gwneud hynny, ond fe wnaeth gam ofnadwy ag Owen a llawer o bobl debyg iddo ar yr achlysur hwn. Felly, mae angen ymchwilio’r cyfnod tywyll hwn mewn hanes yn llawn yn awr, ac mae’n rhaid i ni sicrhau na all byth ddigwydd eto. Mae’n rhaid i ni hefyd sicrhau bod lleisiau dioddefwyr o Gymru a’u teuluoedd yn cael eu clywed. A wnewch chi weithio gyda Llywodraeth Cymru i sicrhau bod yr ymchwiliad yn gallu datgelu’r gwirionedd ynglŷn â’r anghyfiawnder echrydus hwn, gwirionedd sy’n hollol dryloyw ar bob adeg? Diolch.

Thank you for the comments and questions. Again, many Members in this Chamber will be directly affected by knowing someone who’s been directly affected by the scandal. What we’re at pains to do is not to try and claim the Welsh Government can write the terms of the remit for the inquiry. We’ll do all that we could and should do to influence and to advocate terms of reference that meet the needs of families and what they actually want to see within the inquiry terms of reference. I’ll be completely transparent with party spokespeople around this Chamber on what we’re trying to do to reach that point. It goes to saying about the timescale as well, because almost all of us will want to see a brief timescale, but, given the period of time that this has taken place, given the number of documents that are likely to be provided or need to be provided and disclosed and then considered, I would not anticipate a public inquiry being quick. But I think, for those people who have waited so long to get to have an inquiry, to get the terms right, to make sure all the evidence is right and there’s properly time to consider that, I think, is most important. That means the inquiry has to be properly equipped rather than asking for an inquiry with a huge remit with hardly any resources to do so. So, they’re all points that we’ll be making in our conversation with the UK Government, and points we want to consider together with affected families. But, as I say, I’ll be completely transparent with this Chamber about the efforts that Welsh Government makes to try and advocate for the people who live here in Wales.

Diolch am y sylwadau a’r cwestiynau. Unwaith eto, bydd llawer o’r Aelodau yn y Siambr hon wedi’u heffeithio’n uniongyrchol o fod yn adnabod rhywun yr effeithiwyd arnynt uniongyrchol gan y sgandal. Rydym yn awyddus iawn i beidio â cheisio honni y gall Llywodraeth Cymru ysgrifennu telerau’r cylch gwaith ar gyfer yr ymchwiliad. Byddwn yn gwneud popeth a allwn ac y dylwn ei wneud i ddylanwadu ac i ddadlau dros gylch gorchwyl sy’n diwallu anghenion teuluoedd a’r hyn y maent eisiau ei weld o fewn cylch gorchwyl yr ymchwiliad mewn gwirionedd. Byddaf yn hollol dryloyw gyda llefarwyr y pleidiau o amgylch y Siambr hon o ran yr hyn rydym yn ceisio ei wneud i gyrraedd y pwynt hwnnw. Mae angen dweud am yr amserlen hefyd, oherwydd bydd bron bob un ohonom eisiau gweld amserlen fer, ond o ystyried y cyfnod o amser y digwyddodd hyn, o ystyried nifer y dogfennau sy’n debygol o gael eu darparu neu y bydd angen eu darparu a’u datgelu ac yna’u hystyried, ni fyddwn yn rhagweld y bydd ymchwiliad cyhoeddus yn gyflym. Ond rwy’n credu, i’r bobl sydd wedi aros cyhyd i gael ymchwiliad, cael y telerau’n gywir, gwneud yn siŵr fod yr holl dystiolaeth yn gywir a bod amser priodol i’w hystyried yw’r pethau pwysicaf yn fy marn i. Mae hynny’n golygu bod yn rhaid i’r ymchwiliad gael yr adnoddau priodol yn hytrach na gofyn am ymchwiliad gyda chylch gwaith enfawr heb fawr ddim adnoddau i wneud hynny. Felly, mae’r rhain i gyd yn bwyntiau y byddwn yn eu gwneud yn ein sgwrs â Llywodraeth y DU, ac yn bwyntiau rydym eisiau eu hystyried ar y cyd â’r teuluoedd yr effeithiwyd arnynt. Ond fel rwy’n dweud, byddaf yn hollol dryloyw gyda’r Siambr hon ynglŷn â’r ymdrechion y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn eu gwneud i geisio dadlau dros y bobl sy’n byw yma yng Nghymru.

Diolch i’r Ysgrifennydd Cabinet. Yr ail gwestiwn—Eluned Morgan.

I thank the Cabinet Secretary. The second question—Eluned Morgan.

Cau Swyddfeydd yr Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau

Closure of Department for Work and Pensions Offices

Pa drafodaethau y mae Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet wedi’u cael ynghylch y swyddi a gaiff eu colli o ganlyniad i’r penderfyniad i gau swyddfeydd yr Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau yn Llanelli ac mewn rhannau eraill o Gymru? TAQ(5)0197(EI)

What discussions has the Cabinet Secretary held regarding job losses resulting from the confirmed closure of DWP offices in Llanelli and other parts of Wales? TAQ(5)0197(EI)

I’ve made repeated representations to the Minister for employment. I made clear my concerns when we spoke on 5 July. I’ll continue to seek assurances about the position of staff who are adversely affected by these changes. And, indeed, I’m meeting with the UK Minister tomorrow to discuss the matter further.

Rwyf wedi gwneud sylwadau i’r Gweinidog cyflogaeth sawl gwaith. Eglurais fy mhryderon pan siaradasom ar 5 Gorffennaf. Byddaf yn parhau i geisio sicrwydd ynglŷn â sefyllfa staff yr effeithir yn niweidiol arnynt gan y newidiadau hyn. Ac yn wir, rwy’n cyfarfod â Gweinidog y DU yfory i drafod y mater ymhellach.

That’s excellent news. I’m sure the Minister will leave no stone unturned, as indeed will my colleague, Lee Waters, who’s the AM for Llanelli who is, as we speak, meeting for the second time with Damian Hinds from the Department for Work and Pensions, and Nia Griffiths MP, who are trying to gain a last minute reprieve for what I and they perceive to be a very misguided decision in relation in particular to the Llanelli situation, where we are foreseeing job losses of 146 people. Despite the fact that Carmarthenshire council has worked hard to secure the offer of alternative offices in Llanelli, and I know of the valiant efforts on behalf of the Welsh Government, who have offered free office space to keep these jobs locally, the Tory Government have once again turned their backs on west Wales. Does the Cabinet Secretary agree that moving these jobs from Llanelli flies in the face of the UK Government’s industrial strategy, which says that it wants to spread prosperity across the United Kingdom?

Mae hynny’n newyddion gwych. Rwy’n siŵr y bydd y Gweinidog yn troi pob carreg yn wir, fel y bydd fy nghyd-Aelod, Lee Waters, sy’n AC dros Lanelli ac sydd, wrth i ni siarad, yn cyfarfod am yr eildro gyda Damian Hinds o’r Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau, a Nia Griffiths AS, sy’n ceisio dod o hyd i ateb munud olaf i’r hyn rwyf fi a hwythau’n ei ystyried yn benderfyniad cyfeiliornus iawn yn arbennig mewn perthynas â’r sefyllfa yn Llanelli, lle rydym yn rhagweld y bydd 146 o bobl yn colli eu swyddi. Er bod Cyngor Sir Caerfyrddin wedi gweithio’n galed i sicrhau’r cynnig o swyddfeydd amgen yn Llanelli, ac rwy’n gwybod am yr ymdrechion glew ar ran Llywodraeth Cymru, sydd wedi cynnig gofod swyddfa rhad ac am ddim i gadw’r swyddi hyn yn lleol, mae’r Llywodraeth Dorïaidd wedi troi eu cefnau ar orllewin Cymru unwaith eto. A yw Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn cytuno bod symud y swyddi hyn o Lanelli yn mynd yn groes i strategaeth ddiwydiannol Llywodraeth y DU, sy’n dweud ei bod eisiau lledaenu ffyniant ar draws y Deyrnas Unedig?

Absolutely. I’m very disappointed that the DWP announced last Wednesday the decision to close the Llanelli benefit office and the job centres in Mountain Ash, Pyle, and Tredegar. Relocating jobs will affect about 150 staff, we understand. I’m also very disappointed that they did not see fit to consult with the Welsh Government about alternative solutions prior to the final decision. I stated my profound concerns regarding this to Damian Hinds last week when I spoke with him on the telephone, and I’ve written several times, both before the general election and afterwards, about this.

We welcome the relocation of jobs of 93 staff based at the Porth debt centre, who will now go to the Tonypandy job centre as opposed to Caerphilly, as was announced earlier in the year. And, during our conversation, the Minister for employment also indicated to me that he’s opening what he described as a large modern building north of Cardiff to merge five small and nearby processing centres, but he didn’t give me any details of that, so I’ll be pressing him on that tomorrow. I did point out very fervently that we were not looking to consolidate jobs in areas of high employment, but actually we were looking to preserve jobs in areas of lower employment where the jobs were much more important and much needed. We had some discussion about the topography of Wales in that conversation, and about how perhaps lines on a map without the mountains in between weren’t awfully indicative of people’s ability to commute, and so on. I will be pursuing that with him tomorrow.

But the bottom line is this: we are very, very disappointed that we weren’t properly consulted, that our offers of help with keeping jobs in areas that badly need them were not taken up. I will be seeking constructively to work with him tomorrow about their plans for the future to see if we can influence them to make sure that existing jobs stay in Valleys communities and other communities where unemployment is a bit higher across Wales, and we will be reiterating our Better Jobs, Closer to Home policy, not consolidating people in big centres inevitably further away from where they live.

Yn hollol. Rwy’n siomedig iawn fod yr Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau, ddydd Mercher diwethaf, wedi cyhoeddi’r penderfyniad i gau’r swyddfa budd-daliadau yn Llanelli a’r canolfannau gwaith yn Aberpennar, Y Pîl, a Thredegar. Rydym yn deall y bydd adleoli swyddi yn effeithio ar tua 150 o staff. Rwy’n siomedig iawn hefyd na wnaethant ymgynghori â Llywodraeth Cymru ynglŷn ag atebion amgen cyn y penderfyniad terfynol. Nodais fy mhryderon dwys ynglŷn â hyn wrth Damian Hinds yr wythnos ddiwethaf pan siaradais ag ef ar y ffôn, ac rwyf wedi ysgrifennu sawl gwaith ynglŷn â hyn, cyn yr etholiad cyffredinol ac wedi hynny.

Rydym yn croesawu’r ffaith fod swyddi 93 o staff yng nghanolfan ddyledion y Porth yn cael eu hadleoli yn awr i ganolfan waith Tonypandy yn hytrach na Chaerffili fel y cyhoeddwyd yn gynharach yn y flwyddyn. Ac yn ystod ein sgwrs, dywedodd y Gweinidog cyflogaeth wrthyf hefyd ei fod yn agor yr hyn a ddisgrifiodd fel adeilad modern mawr i’r gogledd o Gaerdydd i uno pum canolfan brosesu fach a chyfagos, ond ni roddodd unrhyw fanylion am hynny i mi, felly byddaf yn pwyso arno mewn perthynas â hynny yfory. Nodais yn bendant iawn nad ein nod oedd crynhoi swyddi mewn ardaloedd â lefelau uchel o gyflogaeth, ond ein bod, mewn gwirionedd, yn ceisio cadw swyddi mewn ardaloedd â lefelau cyflogaeth is lle roedd y swyddi’n llawer pwysicach ac yn fawr eu hangen. Cawsom rywfaint o drafodaeth am dopograffi Cymru yn y sgwrs honno, ac ynglŷn â’r ffordd nad oedd llinellau ar fap, heb y mynyddoedd yn y canol, o bosibl, yn dynodi gallu pobl i gymudo yn dda iawn, ac yn y blaen. Byddaf yn mynd ar drywydd hynny gydag ef yfory.

Ond diwedd y gân yw hyn: rydym yn siomedig tu hwnt na ymgynghorwyd yn briodol â ni, na chafodd ein cynigion i helpu i gadw swyddi mewn ardaloedd sydd eu hangen yn fawr mo’u derbyn. Byddaf yn ceisio gweithio’n adeiladol gydag ef yfory mewn perthynas â’u cynlluniau ar gyfer y dyfodol i weld a allwn ddylanwadu arnynt i wneud yn siŵr fod swyddi sy’n bodoli eisoes yn aros yng nghymunedau’r Cymoedd a chymunedau eraill lle mae diweithdra ychydig yn uwch ar draws Cymru, a byddwn yn ailadrodd ein polisi Swyddi Gwell yn Nes at Adref, nid crynhoi pobl mewn canolfannau mawr sydd, yn anochel, ymhellach o ble y maent yn byw.

Wrth gwrs, rwy’n gobeithio y byddwch chi’n cael llwyddiant yn eich cyfarfod yfory ac efallai yn defnyddio’r cyfle olaf i ddarbwyllo’r Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau i wyrdroi’r penderfyniad, yn enwedig yng nghyd-destun symud swyddi oddi ar ganol tref Llanelli, sydd yn mynd i gael effaith economaidd ddybryd iawn ar dref sydd yn sigledig yn economaidd, fel rŷm ni i gyd yn gwybod.

Rwy’n ddiolchgar eich bod chi wedi ateb, y bore yma, cwestiwn ysgrifenedig, ac yn benodol hoffwn i droi at y ffaith bod yr Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau yn dweud na fydd neb yn gorfod colli swydd oherwydd y penderfyniad yma yn Llanelli, ond yn cael eu hadleoli. Ond byddwch chi’n gwybod o’r trafodaethau mae’n siŵr eu bod nhw yn sôn am adleoli i lefydd fel Doc Penfro a Chaerdydd, ac mae’n gwbl amhosibl, gyda chynifer o fenywod, pobl gyda chyfrifoldebau gofal, pobl gyda phlant ifanc a gyda rhieni mewn oed i ystyried symud swyddi o ganol Llanelli i weithio mewn ardaloedd mor wasgaredig. Felly, yn benodol, pan fyddwch chi’n cwrdd â Damian Hinds yfory, a fyddwch chi’n gofyn yn fwy penodol am warant ganddo fe os nad oes rhywun yn medru adleoli oherwydd y cyfrifoldebau sydd gyda nhw o ran gofal plant neu oherwydd y sefyllfa bersonol sydd gyda nhw, na fydd yna ddiswyddo gorfodol yn digwydd? Iawn, os yw pobl yn moyn cael eu diswyddo yn wirfoddol, mae hynny’n fater iddyn nhw. Ond a fedrwch chi gael ymrwymiad na fydd diswyddo gorfodol, ac felly y bydd pobl yn medru cadw eu swyddi?

Of course, I hope that you will be successful in your meeting tomorrow and that, hopefully, you will use that opportunity to convince the DWP to overturn their decision, especially in the context of moving jobs from the centre of Llanelli, which is going to have a huge economic effect on a town that is fragile economically, as we all know.

I’m grateful that you responded to my written question this morning, and, specifically, I’d like to turn to the fact that the DWP says that nobody will be forced to lose their jobs as a result of this decision, but that they’ll be relocated. But you will know that they’re talking about relocation to places such as Pembroke Dock and Cardiff, and it’s impossible for so many women, those with caring responsibilities, those with young children, and those caring for elderly parents to consider moving jobs from the heart of Llanelli to such far-flung areas. So, specifically, when you meet Damian Hinds tomorrow, will you ask more specifically for a guarantee from him that if someone is not able to relocate because of the responsibilities they have in terms of childcare or because of their personal situation, they won’t face compulsory redundancy as a result of that? It’s fine if they want to do that voluntarily; that’s a matter for them. But could you ask for that guarantee that there won’t be compulsory redundancies so that people can keep their jobs?

Well, indeed, that’s very much part of the conversation. We had a conversation about possible relocation areas for people from Llanelli, and a diverse range of places were mentioned, moving me to ask whether he had a map with the mountains marked on it. One of the areas that was mentioned was a possible relocation to Swansea waterfront, for example. I was explaining the difficulty of commuting from Llanelli centre to Swansea. That might not look like that much distance in the south-east, but here in Wales it is really quite a distance, and anyway the staff are likely to be coming from west of Llanelli.

So, I’ve made all of those points. We have made the point that we’re very unhappy about any kind of compulsory redundancy scheme. I will be reiterating that. But I would also like to say that, where people are affected by redundancy, if that’s what happens—and I am being assured at the moment that that will not happen—but if it does happen, then obviously we will work very hard to make sure that anybody affected gets the full benefit of our ReAct services and all the rest of it. So, we will want to be getting clarification from the work services director for Wales regarding the timing of the closures, the relocation plans and the likely effect on not only the staff but also the services offered to service users, and travel arrangements for them, and adjustment times and so on—really just getting as much detail as possible, (a) to continue the pressure on them not to make decisions that don’t make any sense in the context of Wales, and (b) where they do make those decisions, to make sure we line up our services to fill in the gaps, really.

Wel, yn wir, mae honno’n rhan bwysig o’r sgwrs. Cawsom sgwrs am ardaloedd adleoli posibl i bobl o Lanelli, a chafodd ystod amrywiol o leoedd eu crybwyll, gan beri i mi ofyn a oedd ganddo fap gyda’r mynyddoedd wedi’u marcio arno. Un o’r ardaloedd a grybwyllwyd oedd adleoliad posibl i lannau Abertawe, er enghraifft. Roeddwn yn esbonio pa mor anodd yw hi i gymudo o ganol Llanelli i Abertawe. Efallai nad yw’n ymddangos yn bell iawn yn y de-ddwyrain, ond yma yng Nghymru, mae’n gryn bellter mewn gwirionedd, a beth bynnag, mae’r staff yn debygol o fod yn dod o’r gorllewin i Lanelli.

Felly, rwyf wedi gwneud pob un o’r pwyntiau hynny. Rydym wedi gwneud y pwynt ein bod yn anhapus iawn ynglŷn ag unrhyw fath o gynllun diswyddo gorfodol. Byddaf yn ailadrodd hynny. Ond hoffwn ddweud hefyd, lle yr effeithir ar bobl gan ddiswyddiadau, os mai dyna a fydd yn digwydd—ac rwy’n cael sicrwydd ar hyn o bryd na fydd hynny’n digwydd—ond os yw’n digwydd, yna yn amlwg byddwn yn gweithio’n galed iawn i wneud yn siŵr fod unrhyw un yr effeithir arnynt yn cael budd llawn ein gwasanaethau ReAct ynghyd â phopeth arall. Felly, byddwn yn awyddus i gael eglurhad gan gyfarwyddwr gwasanaethau gwaith Cymru mewn perthynas ag amseriad y cau, y cynlluniau adleoli a’r effaith debygol ar y staff ond hefyd y gwasanaethau a gynigir i ddefnyddwyr gwasanaethau, a threfniadau teithio ar eu cyfer, a’r addasiadau i’r amseroedd ac yn y blaen—cael cymaint o fanylion ag y bo modd mewn gwirionedd, (a) i barhau i roi pwysau arnynt i beidio â gwneud penderfyniadau nad ydynt yn gwneud unrhyw synnwyr yng nghyd-destun Cymru, a (b) os ydynt yn gwneud y penderfyniadau hynny, eu bod yn sicrhau ein bod yn addasu ein gwasanaethau i lenwi’r bylchau, mewn gwirionedd.

Thank you, Minister, for the responses you’ve given so far. It’s an interesting comparison with what we were talking about with Tesco just a couple of weeks ago, where we were concerned that we couldn’t influence this large corporate, and now the Government, the UK Government, which can pay heed to our communities, is doing almost the same thing as Tesco did, which I find extraordinary.

The rumours, for example, are a huge issue. You mentioned the relocation from the DWP in Caerphilly to somewhere north of Cardiff—and other areas to the north of Cardiff. Well, I’ve heard possibly Treforest industrial estate. I don’t know whether that’s true or not, but I do know that the PCS union, who I’ve spoken to, have huge concerns about access, particularly, for workers in Caerphilly. Wayne David MP has expressed those concerns and I stand with him in expressing those concerns today.

This also, as you say, flies in the face of Welsh Government policy where we’re trying to bring jobs further north through the northern Valleys and the UK Government is moving things south. It just doesn’t make any sense. Therefore, will you further commit, when you speak to the UK Government, to encouraging them to keep the Caerphilly centre—to reconsider their plans for the Caerphilly centre and keep that open as well?

Diolch i chi, Gweinidog, am yr ymatebion rydych wedi’u rhoi hyd yn hyn. Mae’n gymhariaeth ddiddorol gyda’r hyn roeddem yn sôn amdano gyda Tesco ychydig o wythnosau yn ôl yn unig, pan oeddem yn pryderu na allem ddylanwadu ar y cwmni corfforaethol mawr hwnnw, ac yn awr mae’r Llywodraeth, Llywodraeth y DU, sy’n gallu gwrando ar ein cymunedau, yn gwneud bron yr un peth ag y gwnaeth Tesco, ac mae hynny’n fy rhyfeddu.

Mae’r sibrydion, er enghraifft, yn broblem enfawr. Fe sonioch am yr adleoli o’r Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau yng Nghaerffili i rywle i’r gogledd o Gaerdydd—ac ardaloedd eraill i’r gogledd o Gaerdydd. Wel, rwyf wedi clywed fod ystâd ddiwydiannol Trefforest yn bosibilrwydd. Nid wyf yn gwybod a yw hynny’n wir ai peidio, ond rwy’n gwybod fod gan Undeb y Gwasanaethau Cyhoeddus a Masnachol, y siaradais â hwy, bryderon mawr ynglŷn â mynediad, yn arbennig, ar gyfer gweithwyr yng Nghaerffili. Mae Wayne David AS wedi mynegi’r pryderon hynny ac rwy’n sefyll gydag ef wrth fynegi’r pryderon hynny heddiw.

Mae hyn hefyd, fel y dywedwch, yn mynd yn groes i bolisi Llywodraeth Cymru lle rydym yn ceisio dod â swyddi ymhellach i’r gogledd drwy’r Cymoedd gogleddol ac mae Llywodraeth y DU yn symud pethau i’r de. Nid yw’n gwneud unrhyw synnwyr. Felly, a wnewch chi roi ymrwymiad pellach, pan fyddwch yn siarad â Llywodraeth y DU, i’w hannog i gadw canolfan Caerffili—i ailystyried eu cynlluniau ar gyfer canolfan Caerffili a chadw honno ar agor hefyd?

Yes, indeed, I’m happy to make that commitment to you. We will, I hope, be having a broad discussion about exactly what the plans are, why they’ve seen fit to do this, why they didn’t consult with us, and indeed what can be done now. It hasn’t actually happened yet. What can we do at this moment in time to assist and to make sure that we understand exactly what the proposals are so that we don’t have a rumour mill going on, which has been going on for some time, and that staff can be reassured, and indeed service users can be reassured, about where the offices will be located in the future?

So, as I said, we’ll be looking for clarification regarding the timing of the closures, relocation of staff, what’s happening to the services—the whole range of issues around the relocation of the offices. I will be reiterating that this is absolutely not at all what the UK Government has said in its industrial strategy about bringing employment to areas where there’s less employment than you might get in urban centres, and it absolutely cuts across our own Better Jobs, Closer to Home agenda.

Gwnaf, yn wir, rwy’n hapus i roi’r ymrwymiad hwnnw i chi. Rwy’n gobeithio y byddwn yn cael trafodaeth eang ynglŷn â beth yn union yw’r cynlluniau, pam eu bod wedi penderfynu gwneud hyn, pam nad ydynt wedi ymgynghori â ni, ac yn wir, beth y gellir ei wneud yn awr. Nid yw wedi digwydd eto mewn gwirionedd. Beth y gallwn ei wneud ar hyn o bryd i gynorthwyo ac i wneud yn siŵr ein bod yn deall yn union beth yw’r cynigion fel nad oes sibrydion yn mynd o gwmpas, fel sydd wedi bod yn digwydd ers peth amser, ac er mwyn gallu sicrhau staff, a sicrhau defnyddwyr gwasanaethau yn wir, ynglŷn â ble fydd y swyddfeydd wedi’u lleoli yn y dyfodol?

Felly, fel y dywedais, byddwn yn chwilio am eglurhad ynglŷn ag amseriad y cau, adleoli staff, beth sy’n digwydd i’r gwasanaethau—yr holl ystod o faterion sy’n ymwneud ag adleoli’r swyddfeydd. Byddaf yn ailadrodd nad dyma y mae Llywodraeth y DU wedi’i ddweud yn ei strategaeth ddiwydiannol mewn perthynas â dod â chyflogaeth i ardaloedd lle mae llai o gyflogaeth nag y byddech yn ei gael mewn canolfannau trefol, ac mae’n sicr yn mynd yn groes i’n hagenda Swyddi Gwell yn Nes at Adref ein hunain.

When the Minister meets the UK Minister tomorrow, she’ll be able to say that she has the united support of all the Assembly Members for Mid and West Wales, and indeed from my party as well as Plaid Cymru, in what she says. She’s absolutely right, of course, in relation to west Wales—one of the poorest parts not just of the United Kingdom, but in fact western Europe. It’s quite wrong for Government to take what might be called a hard-nosed, commercial view of relocation simply to save a few bob here and there and to behave in a way that a company like Tesco has behaved, as Hefin David has just observed. And insofar as this goes quite contrary to the policy of the Welsh Government in this respect, this is the third time this afternoon we’ve heard that UK Government Ministers have had the lack of basic good manners to consult with or at least to speak with Welsh Government Ministers before decisions are taken that affect the vital interests of Wales. We heard this from the Counsel General, we’ve heard it also from the Cabinet Secretary for health, and now from the Minister for Skills and Science. UK Government Ministers need to learn that devolution is a reality and they need to respect the interests of Wales as represented in this Assembly.

Can I also say that this decision just shows that merely because jobs are public sector jobs they’re not necessarily safe and secure? What is vitally necessary is that we have greater diversification of the Welsh economy, because two thirds of our national income ultimately depends upon Government spending of one kind or another, and we desperately need to get more private sector investment and better paid jobs in Wales.

Pan fydd y Gweinidog yn cyfarfod â Gweinidog y DU yfory, bydd hi’n gallu dweud bod ganddi gefnogaeth unedig yr holl Aelodau Cynulliad dros Ganolbarth a Gorllewin Cymru, ac yn wir, gan fy mhlaid i yn ogystal â Phlaid Cymru, yn yr hyn y mae’n ei ddweud. Mae hi’n hollol gywir, wrth gwrs, mewn perthynas â gorllewin Cymru—un o’r rhannau tlotaf, nid yn unig yn y Deyrnas Unedig, ond yng ngorllewin Ewrop mewn gwirionedd. Mae’n gwbl anghywir i’r Llywodraeth fabwysiadu safbwynt y gellid ei alw’n safbwynt digyfaddawd masnachol ar adleoli yn syml er mwyn arbed ychydig o geiniogau yma ac acw ac i ymddwyn yn yr un ffordd ag y mae cwmni fel Tesco wedi ymddwyn, fel y mae Hefin David newydd ei nodi. Ac i’r graddau fod hyn yn mynd yn gwbl groes i bolisi Llywodraeth Cymru yn hyn o beth, dyma’r trydydd tro y prynhawn yma inni glywed bod Gweinidogion Llywodraeth y DU wedi bod yn rhy brin o foesau da sylfaenol i ymgynghori neu o leiaf i siarad â Gweinidogion Llywodraeth Cymru cyn gwneud penderfyniadau sy’n effeithio ar fuddiannau hanfodol Cymru. Clywsom hyn gan y Cwnsler Cyffredinol, fe’i clywsom hefyd gan Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet dros iechyd, ac yn awr gan y Gweinidog Sgiliau a Gwyddoniaeth. Mae angen i Weinidogion Llywodraeth y DU ddysgu bod datganoli yn realiti a bod angen iddynt barchu buddiannau Cymru fel y cânt eu cynrychioli yn y Cynulliad hwn.

A gaf fi hefyd ddweud bod y penderfyniad hwn yn dangos nad yw swyddi o reidrwydd yn ddiogel yn unig oherwydd eu bod yn swyddi sector cyhoeddus? Yr hyn sy’n hanfodol angenrheidiol yw bod gennym fwy o arallgyfeirio yn yr economi yng Nghymru, gan fod dwy ran o dair o’n hincwm cenedlaethol, yn y pen draw, yn dibynnu ar wariant Llywodraethol o ryw fath neu’i gilydd, ac mae taer angen mwy o fuddsoddiad yn y sector preifat a swyddi sy’n talu’n well yng Nghymru. 

I’m very grateful for the cross-party support. It makes no sense to us to move jobs from areas that need them badly into areas where employment is much higher. I don’t have all the details of the plan for the big new office, nor of the closure of, I presume, some of the satellite offices around it, but I will be seeking clarification on that, and indeed we will be seeking to affect the location of that centre. I don’t have the detail of that yet, but we will be seeking to get it.

In terms of diversification, I don’t disagree with that, really, but also we want the UK Government to commit to keeping good public sector jobs in areas of Wales where that employment is needed. They’re often seed jobs, they often keep a small local economy afloat, all the cafes and little shops around these centres also struggle once they leave, and it is often the centre of a small little ecosystem. So, whilst I don’t disagree with the diversification point, I also want to underline that we want a commitment from the UK Government to use its money and employment wisely and well in order to support other industry and employment in those areas.

Rwy’n ddiolchgar iawn am y gefnogaeth drawsbleidiol. Nid yw’n gwneud unrhyw synnwyr i ni symud swyddi o ardaloedd sydd eu hangen yn fawr i ardaloedd lle mae cyflogaeth yn llawer uwch. Nid oes gennyf holl fanylion y cynllun ar gyfer y swyddfa fawr newydd, nac am gau, rwy’n tybio, rhai o’r is-swyddfeydd o’i chwmpas, ond byddaf yn gofyn am eglurhad ar hynny, ac yn wir byddwn yn ceisio dylanwadu ar leoliad y ganolfan honno. Nid oes gennyf y manylion hynny eto, ond byddaf yn gofyn amdanynt.

O ran arallgyfeirio, nid wyf yn anghytuno â hynny mewn gwirionedd, ond hefyd rydym eisiau i Lywodraeth y DU ymrwymo i gadw swyddi sector cyhoeddus da mewn ardaloedd o Gymru lle mae angen y gwaith hwnnw. Maent yn aml yn swyddi sy’n arwain at greu gwaith arall, maent yn aml yn cynnal economi fach leol, mae’r holl gaffis a siopau bach o amgylch y canolfannau hyn hefyd yn ei chael hi’n anodd ar ôl iddynt adael, ac maent yn aml yn ganolbwynt i ecosystem fach. Felly, er nad wyf yn anghytuno â’r pwynt ynglŷn ag arallgyfeirio, rwyf hefyd yn awyddus i bwysleisio ein bod eisiau ymrwymiad gan Lywodraeth y DU i ddefnyddio ei harian a’i chyflogaeth yn ddoeth ac yn dda er mwyn cefnogi diwydiannau a chyflogaeth o fathau eraill yn yr ardaloedd hynny.

We know that the scope of the DWP changes also include closing their site in Sovereign House in Newport. This will mean relocating 249 jobs, which were in the heart of our city, to somewhere north of Cardiff. The loyal staff at Sovereign House deserve better and the DWP faces losing highly skilled and experienced workers because of unnecessary changes.

The lack of consultation, as other members have said, is absolutely deplorable and this goes against the Government’s policy for jobs closer to home. In fact, these plans seem to have been drawn up by the UK Government with no understanding of the staff they currently employ, commuting times, or indeed the geography of Wales.

My colleagues Paul Flynn and Jessica Morden MP are leading this in Parliament, but can you assure my constituents that, in your discussions with the UK Government and Minister tomorrow, you will do everything in your power to protect those jobs in Newport?

Rydym yn gwybod fod cwmpas newidiadau’r Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau hefyd yn cynnwys cau eu safle yn Sovereign House yng Nghasnewydd. Bydd hyn yn golygu adleoli 249 o swyddi, a oedd yng nghanol ein dinas, i rywle i’r gogledd o Gaerdydd. Mae’r staff teyrngar yn Sovereign House yn haeddu gwell ac mae’r Adran Gwaith a Phensiynau yn wynebu colli gweithwyr medrus a phrofiadol iawn oherwydd newidiadau diangen.

Mae’r diffyg ymgynghori, fel y mae aelodau eraill wedi’i ddweud, yn gwbl druenus ac mae hyn yn mynd yn erbyn polisi’r Llywodraeth o gadw swyddi yn nes at adref. Yn wir, mae’r cynlluniau hyn i’w gweld fel pe baent wedi cael eu llunio gan Lywodraeth y DU heb unrhyw ddealltwriaeth o’r staff y maent yn eu cyflogi ar hyn o bryd, amseroedd cymudo, na daearyddiaeth Cymru yn wir.

Mae fy nghydweithwyr Paul Flynn a Jessica Morden AS yn arwain ar y mater hwn yn y Senedd, ond a allwch sicrhau fy etholwyr, yn eich trafodaethau gyda Llywodraeth y DU a’r Gweinidog yfory, y byddwch yn gwneud popeth yn eich gallu i ddiogelu’r swyddi hynny yng Nghasnewydd?

Absolutely. As I said, we’re trying to get a picture of the situation across Wales. We are not at all happy about the consolidation of jobs into one particular area. We haven’t been consulted about it. It appears to us to have been driven by estate matters, rather than jobs and employment matters, which is, in my opinion, not the right way round. We have offered to work with them, and indeed we are currently—and I extend the offer now—hoping to work with them about what their office requirements are, and that we haven’t been consulted. I have offered officials as contacts to have that discussion with them, and I will certainly be making the point about Newport, alongside all of the other offices that are faced with closure in this what I can only describe as ill-considered and ill-thought-out proposal.

Yn sicr. Fel y dywedais, rydym yn ceisio cael darlun o’r sefyllfa ar draws Cymru. Nid ydym yn hapus o gwbl ynglŷn â’r broses o grynhoi swyddi mewn un ardal benodol. Nid ydynt wedi ymgynghori â ni yn ei gylch. Ymddengys i ni ei fod wedi cael ei ysgogi gan faterion yn ymwneud ag ystadau, yn hytrach na materion yn ymwneud â swyddi a chyflogaeth, ac nid honno yw’r ffordd gywir o fynd o’i chwmpas yn fy marn i. Rydym wedi cynnig gweithio gyda hwy, ac yn wir, ar hyn o bryd rydym—ac rwy’n estyn y cynnig yn awr—yn gobeithio gweithio gyda hwy ynglŷn â beth yw eu gofynion swyddfa, a’r ffaith nad ydynt wedi ymgynghori â ni. Rwyf wedi cynnig swyddogion fel cysylltiadau i gael y drafodaeth honno gyda hwy, a byddaf yn sicr yn gwneud y pwynt ynglŷn â Chasnewydd, ochr yn ochr â’r holl swyddfeydd eraill sy’n wynebu cau o ganlyniad i’r hyn na allaf ond ei ddisgrifio fel argymhelliad byrbwyll na roddwyd ystyriaeth briodol iddo.

Diolch i’r Gweinidog. Y cwestiwn olaf—Mohammad Asghar.

I thank the Minister. The final question—Mohammad Asghar.

Coilcolor yng Nghasnewydd

Coilcolor in Newport

A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ddatganiad am sut y mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn bwriadu atal swyddi rhag cael eu colli yng Coilcolor yng Nghasnewydd? TAQ(5)0198(EI)

Will the Cabinet Secretary make a statement on how the Welsh Government intends to prevent job losses at Coilcolor in Newport? TAQ(5)0198(EI)

Yes. My officials have been in dialogue with the company since the flooding of the premises occurred. On 10 July, we were notified that the company intended to enter into administration, but we stand ready to help in whatever way we can.

Gwnaf. Mae fy swyddogion wedi bod yn trafod gyda’r cwmni ers y llifogydd ar y safle. Ar 10 Gorffennaf, cawsom ein hysbysu bod y cwmni’n bwriadu mynd i ddwylo’r gweinyddwyr, ond rydym yn barod i helpu ym mha ffordd bynnag y gallwn.

Thank you for the answer, Minister, but I’m sure the Cabinet Secretary shares my concern about the situation at Coilcolor and the threat presented to the jobs of over 40 workers employed there. I understand this situation has arisen from a dispute between the Welsh Government and Coilcolor over the payment of compensation after the company premises were flooded in 2016. The managing director insists a compensation payment had been promised, but the Welsh Government denies this. Will the Cabinet Secretary personally intervene to save the jobs at Coilcolor, and will he agree to investigate this matter fully to see how this dispute could have arisen and make a statement as a matter of urgency, please?

Diolch am yr ateb, Gweinidog, ond rwy’n siŵr fod Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn rhannu fy mhryder ynglŷn â’r sefyllfa yn Coilcolor a’r bygythiad i swyddi dros 40 o weithwyr a gyflogir yno. Rwy’n deall bod y sefyllfa hon wedi codi o anghydfod rhwng Llywodraeth Cymru a Coilcolor dros daliad iawndal ar ôl i adeilad y cwmni ddioddef llifogydd yn 2016. Mae’r rheolwr gyfarwyddwr yn mynnu bod taliad iawndal wedi cael ei addo, ond mae Llywodraeth Cymru yn gwadu hyn. A wnaiff Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ymyrryd yn bersonol i achub y swyddi yn Coilcolor, ac a wnaiff gytuno i ymchwilio i’r mater hwn yn llawn i weld sut y gallai’r anghydfod hwn fod wedi codi a gwneud datganiad fel mater o frys, os gwelwch yn dda?

Can I thank the Member for his question and his concern, which is shared by many other Members in this Chamber? Indeed, the local Member Jayne Bryant has discussed her concerns over the future of the company with me on numerous occasions and made very strong representations. Essentially, I think it would be inappropriate for me to comment or speculate over the viability of the company were the flood not to have occurred, but in terms of what happened with the flood, normally in this sort of instance an insurance company would pay out but then pursue the parties who are liable. In this case, Welsh Government as the landowner actually had the site licenced to Tai Tirion at the time of the flooding. In turn, the land was occupied by their contractors, Walters, who were remediating the site in preparation for a housing scheme. Now, as I say, normally the claim would be processed through an insurance company and they would then pursue us if we were liable. That has not happened. Officials have been in very close dialogue with the company, and I’ve been taking a very keen interest in this matter over many months. We helped to facilitate support through Finance Wales back in December 2016, enabling the company to continue to trade without major issues, whilst also pursuing their insurance claim.

I would reject any claim that a without-prejudice payment was ever promised by the Welsh Government. What did happen was that after the flooding a letter was received from Coilcolor’s solicitors relating to a claim for £600,000. The Welsh Government instructed external solicitors, who invited details of the claim, but the company has not progressed it. We did send a second letter in April and we received notification of another claim relating to a pay-out made to the landlord of the building amounting to £58,000, but the advice from our solicitor remains that we should not take any actions or make any payments relating to the claim or the property until we have had further details, including the full basis of both claims. That is both responsible and necessary. However, I am concerned about the future of the employees in the company, and we stand ready to help the bank and Grant Thornton in any way possible, should a new buyer come forward and take over the operation. We have tried-and-tested means of intervening when there are job losses. Again, we would deploy the sort of support that we’re planning on deploying if job losses occur at Tesco in Cardiff, for example.

A gaf fi ddiolch i’r Aelod am ei gwestiwn a’i bryder, a rennir gan lawer o Aelodau eraill yn y Siambr hon? Yn wir, mae’r Aelod lleol, Jayne Bryant, wedi trafod ei phryderon ynglŷn â dyfodol y cwmni gyda mi ar sawl achlysur ac wedi cyflwyno sylwadau cryf iawn. Yn y bôn, rwy’n credu y byddai’n amhriodol i mi wneud sylwadau neu ddyfalu ynglŷn â hyfywedd y cwmni pe na bai’r llifogydd wedi digwydd, ond o ran yr hyn a ddigwyddodd gyda’r llifogydd, fel arfer yn y math hwn o achos byddai cwmni yswiriant yn talu’r iawndal ond yna’n erlyn y partïon sy’n atebol. Yn yr achos hwn mewn gwirionedd, roedd Llywodraeth Cymru, fel y tirfeddiannwr, wedi trwyddedu’r safle i Tai Tirion ar adeg y llifogydd. Yn ei dro, roedd y tir wedi’i feddiannu gan eu contractwyr, Walters, a oedd yn adfer y safle i’w baratoi ar gyfer cynllun tai. Nawr, fel y dywedaf, fel arfer byddai’r hawliad yn cael ei brosesu drwy gwmni yswiriant a byddent wedyn yn dod ar ein holau pe baem yn atebol. Nid yw hynny wedi digwydd. Mae swyddogion wedi bod mewn trafodaethau agos iawn gyda’r cwmni, ac rwyf wedi bod â diddordeb brwd iawn yn y mater ers misoedd lawer. Fe wnaethom helpu i hwyluso cymorth drwy Cyllid Cymru yn ôl ym mis Rhagfyr 2016, a alluogodd y cwmni i barhau i fasnachu heb broblemau mawr, gan fwrw ymlaen â’u hawliad yswiriant hefyd.

Buaswn yn gwrthod unrhyw honiad fod Llywodraeth Cymru erioed wedi addo taliad heb ragfarn. Yr hyn a ddigwyddodd oedd bod cyfreithwyr Coilcolor wedi anfon llythyr yn ymwneud â hawliad am £600,000 yn dilyn y llifogydd. Aeth Llywodraeth Cymru ati i gyfarwyddo cyfreithwyr allanol, a ofynnodd am fanylion yr hawliad, ond nid yw’r cwmni wedi bwrw ymlaen ag ef. Anfonasom ail lythyr ym mis Ebrill a chawsom ein hysbysu am hawliad arall yn ymwneud â thaliad o £58,000 i landlord yr adeilad, ond cyngor ein cyfreithiwr o hyd yw na ddylem roi unrhyw gamau ar waith neu wneud unrhyw daliadau sy’n ymwneud â’r hawliad neu’r adeilad hyd nes y byddwn wedi cael rhagor o fanylion, gan gynnwys sail lawn y ddau hawliad. Mae hynny’n gyfrifol ac yn angenrheidiol. Fodd bynnag, rwy’n pryderu am ddyfodol gweithwyr y cwmni, ac rydym yn barod i helpu’r banc a Grant Thornton mewn unrhyw ffordd bosibl, pe bai prynwr newydd yn ymddangos ac yn cymryd meddiant ar y gwaith. Mae gennym fodd dibynadwy o ymyrryd pan fo swyddi’n cael eu colli. Unwaith eto, byddem yn defnyddio’r math o gymorth y bwriadwn ei ddefnyddio pe bai swyddi’n cael eu colli yn Tesco yng Nghaerdydd, er enghraifft.

Cabinet Secretary, I know that you and your officials have been in discussions with Coilcolor since the flood, and made available the support of Finance Wales and Business Wales. Will you continue to do all that you can to examine if there is a way in which the company and staff can be supported at this very difficult time?

Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, rwy’n gwybod eich bod chi a’ch swyddogion wedi bod mewn trafodaethau gyda Coilcolor ers y llifogydd, ac wedi sicrhau bod cefnogaeth Cyllid Cymru a Busnes Cymru ar gael. A fyddwch yn parhau i wneud popeth yn eich gallu i weld a oes ffordd y gellir cynorthwyo’r cwmni a’r staff yn ystod y cyfnod anodd iawn hwn?

Yes, absolutely. I give my undertaking to ensure that officials continue to work with the company, with the bank and with Grant Thornton to do all that we can to save the company and also the jobs that are taken by very skilled people—approximately 50 people—who are employed at the site. I should say, as well, that the support that we were able to assist with through Finance Wales was via their rescue and restructure fund, which essentially meant that because of state aid rules we could not apply additional funding on top of that. But we will continue to work with the company to try to secure a future for it and for the 50 plus workers based at the site.

Byddaf, yn sicr. Rwy’n ymrwymo i sicrhau bod swyddogion yn parhau i weithio gyda’r cwmni, gyda’r banc a chyda Grant Thornton i wneud popeth a allwn i achub y cwmni a hefyd y swyddi sy’n cael eu gwneud gan bobl fedrus iawn—tua 50 o bobl—a gyflogir ar y safle. Dylwn ddweud hefyd fod y gefnogaeth y gallasom ei rhoi drwy Cyllid Cymru yn dod o’u cronfa achub ac ailstrwythuro, a oedd yn golygu yn y bôn na allem ychwanegu cyllid ychwanegol ar ben hynny oherwydd rheolau cymorth gwladwriaethol. Ond byddwn yn parhau i weithio gyda’r cwmni i geisio sicrhau dyfodol iddo ac i’r 50 a mwy o weithwyr sydd wedi’u lleoli ar y safle.

This is very concerning news that a company with a good reputation that supplies multinational companies has had some very harsh things to say about Welsh Government. I’d be very interested to hear the Cabinet Secretary’s view on why he believes the company has got some very serious things to say about the way the Welsh Government has handled this situation. Obviously, 50 families stand to be devastated if the company were to wind down. We understand that there’s been an increase in enquiries from companies in terms of being supplied by Coilcolor, despite the fact that they haven’t got the means to purchase stock at the moment. On the point of the without-prejudice payments, can he clarify again that there wasn’t such an offer made? And, perhaps, can he shed some light on what offer was made and where the misunderstanding may have arisen from? I understand that the flooding came from land that was owned by the Welsh Government, adjacent to the company. Does he believe that the Welsh Government’s got a bit more of an obligation, therefore, to intervene rather than to just point them in the direction of Finance Wales?

On the broader point, particularly when we think of Wales’s reputation as a business-friendly country, what does it say that the best we can offer Welsh small and medium-sized enterprises is a Finance Wales loan with an 11 per cent interest rate, when many people are wondering how large multinationals seem to get a better deal?

Mae’n peri pryder mawr fod cwmni ag enw da sy’n cyflenwi cwmnïau rhyngwladol wedi bod â phethau llym iawn i’w dweud am Lywodraeth Cymru. Hoffwn yn fawr glywed barn Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet ynglŷn â pham ei fod yn credu bod gan y cwmni bethau difrifol iawn i’w dweud ynglŷn â’r ffordd y mae Llywodraeth Cymru wedi ymdrin â’r sefyllfa hon. Yn amlwg, byddai 50 o deuluoedd yn cael eu siomi’n aruthrol pe bai’r cwmni’n dirwyn i ben. Rydym yn deall bod cynnydd wedi bod mewn ymholiadau gan gwmnïau mewn perthynas â chael eu cyflenwi gan Coilcolor, er gwaethaf y ffaith nad oes ganddynt y gallu i brynu stoc ar hyn o bryd. Ar y pwynt ynglŷn â’r taliadau heb ragfarn, a all egluro unwaith eto na wnaed unrhyw gynnig o’r fath? Ac a all daflu rywfaint o oleuni, efallai, ar ba gynnig a wnaed ac o ble y gallai’r gamddealltwriaeth fod wedi codi? Deallaf fod y llifogydd wedi dod o dir a oedd yn eiddo i Lywodraeth Cymru, gerllaw’r cwmni. A yw’n credu bod rhywfaint mwy o ddyletswydd ar Lywodraeth Cymru i ymyrryd felly, yn hytrach na dim ond eu cyfeirio at Cyllid Cymru?

O ran y pwynt ehangach, yn enwedig pan fyddwn yn meddwl am enw da Cymru fel gwlad sy’n gyfeillgar i fusnesau, beth y mae’n ei ddweud os mai’r gorau y gallwn ei gynnig i fentrau bach a chanolig eu maint yng Nghymru yw benthyciad Cyllid Cymru gyda chyfradd llog o 11 y cant, pan fo llawer o bobl yn meddwl tybed sut y mae cwmnïau rhyngwladol mawr i’w gweld yn cael bargen well?

I’d reject many of the claims made by the Member. The rescue and restructure fund that was utilised in this instance did carry an interest rate of 11 per cent, but that fund was required because there was limited scope elsewhere to draw down the necessary resources to keep the company afloat during that difficult time. No without-prejudice—and I’ll state it again: no without-prejudice payment was ever promised. However, what Welsh Government was able to do was act as a broker, ensuring that support from Finance Wales was forthcoming. We examined every other option for supporting the company with financial resource but, as I have just said to Jayne Bryant, that was not possible because further support would have contravened state aid.

We work very closely with the business community to find ways of overcoming problems such as this, but I go back to the point that I made to Mohammad Asghar: it would be inappropriate for me to speculate about the extent to which the flooding event led to the company entering into the sort of problems that it has encountered. In terms of the flooding, I’ve already given details of the occupiers of the land, and the normal process that would be followed by the insurance company, seeking compensation from the liable party—. That process has not been pursued. Instead, we received, as I’ve said to two Members now, a letter from the company’s solicitors calling on us to provide £600,000. It would not be appropriate for us to progress that without the details that are required. We have not yet had the response that we have asked for, in spite of writing on two occasions.

Thirdly, I think it’s absolutely vital that we view the continued employment of the 50 workers at the site as our priority right now. For that reason, officials are continuing to engage with the company to identify means of keeping the site in operation. The Member is right: it provides an incredibly valuable service and it has many suppliers who do require the company to continue operating. I am confident that the bank and Grant Thornton are doing all they can to identify a buyer. Certainly, we stand ready to help in any way we possibly can.

Byddwn yn gwrthod llawer o’r honiadau a wnaeth yr Aelod. Roedd cyfradd llog o 11 y cant ar y gronfa achub ac ailstrwythuro a ddefnyddiwyd yn yr achos hwn, ond roedd angen y gronfa honno am mai cyfyngedig oedd y cyfle mewn mannau eraill i dynnu’r adnoddau angenrheidiol i lawr er mwyn cadw’r cwmni i fynd yn ystod y cyfnod anodd hwn. Ni addawyd unrhyw daliad heb ragfarn—ac rwy’n datgan hynny eto: ni addawyd unrhyw daliad heb ragfarn erioed. Fodd bynnag, fe allodd Llywodraeth Cymru weithredu fel cyfryngwr, gan sicrhau bod cefnogaeth yn dod gan Cyllid Cymru. Archwiliwyd pob opsiwn arall ar gyfer cefnogi’r cwmni gydag adnoddau ariannol, ond fel rwyf newydd ei ddweud wrth Jayne Bryant, nid oedd hynny’n bosibl oherwydd byddai cefnogaeth bellach wedi mynd yn groes i gymorth gwladwriaethol.

Rydym yn gweithio’n agos iawn gyda’r gymuned fusnes i ddod o hyd i ffyrdd o oresgyn problemau fel hyn, ond rwy’n mynd yn ôl at y pwynt wneuthum i Mohammad Asghar: byddai’n amhriodol i mi ddyfalu ynglŷn ag i ba raddau yr arweiniodd y llifogydd at beri i’r cwmni wynebu’r math o broblemau a wynebodd. O ran y llifogydd, rwyf eisoes wedi rhoi manylion am ddeiliaid y tir, a’r broses arferol a fyddai wedi cael ei dilyn gan y cwmni yswiriant, i geisio iawndal gan y parti atebol—. Nid yw’r broses honno wedi cael ei ddilyn. Yn lle hynny, fel y dywedais wrth ddau Aelod yn awr, cawsom lythyr gan gyfreithwyr y cwmni yn galw arnom i dalu £600,000. Ni fyddai’n briodol i ni symud ymlaen heb y manylion sydd eu hangen. Ni chawsom yr ymateb rydym wedi gofyn amdano, er i ni ysgrifennu ar ddau achlysur.

Yn drydydd, rwy’n credu ei bod yn gwbl hanfodol ein bod yn ystyried parhau i gyflogi’r 50 o weithwyr ar y safle fel blaenoriaeth ar hyn o bryd. Am y rheswm hwnnw, mae swyddogion yn parhau i ymgysylltu â’r cwmni i ganfod ffyrdd o gadw’r safle’n weithredol. Mae’r Aelod yn iawn: mae’n darparu gwasanaeth hynod o werthfawr ac mae ganddo lawer o gyflenwyr sy’n ei gwneud yn ofynnol i’r cwmni barhau i weithredu. Rwy’n hyderus fod y banc a Grant Thornton yn gwneud popeth yn eu gallu i ddod o hyd i brynwr. Yn sicr, rydym yn barod i helpu mewn unrhyw ffordd y gallwn.

4. 4. Datganiadau 90 Eiliad
4. 4. 90-second Statements

Yr eitem nesaf yw’r datganiad 90 eiliad. Datganiad cyntaf: Suzy Davies.

The next item is the 90-second statement. The first statement comes from Suzy Davies.

Diolch yn fawr, Llywydd. I would like to take this opportunity to wish the Friends of Aberdulais Falls a very happy thirtieth birthday. Members may already know about this well-loved hidden gem in my region. It was opened in 1584—maybe it’s only Neil Hamilton who can remember that, mind—to smelt copper for coins to pay for warships to fight the Armada. It went on to be used for milling, but by the nineteenth century it was a major tinplate works, employing, unfortunately, children as young as eight. Its product was sold across the world until the US, protecting its own young industry, placed huge tariffs on imported tinplate and the fate of that particular works was sealed. The National Trust took on the site from the local council in 1980 and have been restoring the site ever since. It now is home to Europe’s largest waterwheel, which creates green energy, and the woodland around the waterfall is home to a colony of Daubenton’s bats, which pleases me immensely as one of the Assembly’s bat champions.

The Friends of Aberdulais Falls themselves came together in 1987. In their recent event to celebrate the anniversary, at which many founding members were present, chairperson Bethan Healey paid tribute to the visions of pioneers like Ivor Thorne, who was clerk to the old Neath Rural District Council, and Councillor George Eaton. In 1989, the friends made its first donation to the trust—£1,200—but since then they have raised £213,000, which has been spent on work on the site. As well as the social value of the friends, many of them contribute directly to that work by improving site presentation, maintenance, exhibitions, and even working in the tea room, which is my own personal experience of volunteering with the friends. Thank you.

Diolch yn fawr, Llywydd. Hoffwn fanteisio ar y cyfle hwn i ddymuno pen-blwydd hapus iawn yn ddeg ar hugain i Gyfeillion Rhaeadr Aberdulais. Efallai fod yr aelodau eisoes yn gwybod am y trysor cudd poblogaidd hwn yn fy rhanbarth. Agorwyd y gwaith tun yn 1584—efallai mai dim ond Neil Hamilton a all gofio hynny, cofiwch—i doddi copr ar gyfer gwneud darnau arian i dalu am longau rhyfel i ymladd yr Armada. Aeth ymlaen i gael ei ddefnyddio ar gyfer melino, ond erbyn y bedwaredd ganrif ar bymtheg roedd yn waith tunplat pwysig a gyflogai blant mor ifanc ag wyth oed, yn anffodus. Câi ei gynnyrch ei werthu ledled y byd nes i’r Unol Daleithiau, er mwyn amddiffyn eu diwydiant ifanc eu hunain, osod tariffau enfawr ar dunplat a fewnforiwyd a seliwyd tynged y gwaith hwnnw. Mabwysiadodd yr Ymddiriedolaeth Genedlaethol y safle gan y cyngor lleol yn 1980 ac maent wedi bod yn adfer y safle ers hynny. Mae bellach yn gartref i olwyn ddŵr fwyaf Ewrop, sy’n creu ynni gwyrdd, ac mae’r coetir o gwmpas y rhaeadr yn gartref i nythfa o ystlumod Daubenton, sy’n fy mhlesio’n fawr iawn fel un o hyrwyddwyr ystlumod y Cynulliad.

Daeth Cyfeillion Rhaeadr Aberdulais at ei gilydd yn 1987. Yn eu digwyddiad diweddar i ddathlu’r pen-blwydd, lle roedd llawer o’r aelodau gwreiddiol yn bresennol, rhoddodd y cadeirydd Bethan Healey deyrnged i weledigaethau arloeswyr fel Ivor Thorne, a oedd yn glerc i hen Gyngor Dosbarth Gwledig Castell-nedd, a’r Cynghorydd George Eaton. Yn 1989, rhoddodd y cyfeillion eu cyfraniad cyntaf i’r ymddiriedolaeth—£1,200—ond ers hynny maent wedi codi £213,000, sydd wedi cael ei wario ar waith ar y safle. Yn ogystal â gwerth cymdeithasol y cyfeillion, mae llawer ohonynt yn cyfrannu’n uniongyrchol at y gwaith hwnnw drwy wella golwg y safle, cynnal a chadw, arddangosfeydd, a hyd yn oed gweithio yn yr ystafell de, sef fy mhrofiad personol o wirfoddoli gyda’r cyfeillion. Diolch.

Diolch, Llywydd. On 8 July, 1873, 500 members of the South Wales Choral Union left Aberdare at the start of their journey to compete in the Crystal Palace challenge cup. The union, composed of voices from choirs from across the south Wales coalfield, returned to compete as reigning champions. In 1872 they won the cup without a contest. In 1873 they faced a challenge from one of the most prestigious London choirs, but were declared winners in a scene never to be forgotten by those who were present. The 1874 competition never happened but the union had earned the title of ‘Y Côr Mawr’—the great choir—for their success.

The conductor of the choir was Griffith Rhys Jones, better known as Caradog. The son of a carpenter, Caradog was born in the Rose and Crown Inn in Trecynon and trained and worked as a blacksmith. A gifted musician, Caradog found his calling as a conductor, carrying away his first prize at an Eisteddfod in 1853 at the age of just 19. Over the next 20 years, Caradog’s fame and success grew until it reached that triumphant culmination at Crystal Palace. Caradog is buried in Aberdare, his statue, standing proudly in the town centre. But for historian Phil Carradice, Caradog and his choir changed the image of Wales and the Welsh people. They made Wales the land of song.

Diolch, Llywydd. Ar 8 Gorffennaf 1873 gadawodd 500 o aelodau o Undeb Corawl De Cymru Aberdâr ar ddechrau eu taith i gystadlu am gwpan sialens y Crystal Palace. Roedd yr undeb, wedi’i ffurfio o leisiau o gorau o bob rhan o faes glo de Cymru, yn dychwelyd i gystadlu fel y pencampwyr ar y pryd. Yn 1872 enillasant y cwpan heb gystadleuaeth. Yn 1873 roeddent yn wynebu her gan un o gorau enwocaf Llundain, ond cawsant eu datgan yn enillwyr mewn digwyddiad bythgofiadwy i’r rhai a oedd yn bresennol. Ni ddigwyddodd cystadleuaeth 1874 ond roedd yr undeb wedi ennill y teitl ‘Y Côr Mawr’ am eu llwyddiant.

Arweinydd y côr oedd Griffith Rhys Jones, a oedd yn fwy adnabyddus fel Caradog. Cafodd Caradog ei eni’n fab i saer coed yn y Rose and Crown Inn yn Nhrecynon cyn hyfforddi a mynd i weithio fel gof. Yn gerddor dawnus, daeth Caradog o hyd i’w alwedigaeth fel arweinydd, gan ennill ei wobr gyntaf mewn Eisteddfod yn 1853 yn ddim ond 19 oed. Dros yr 20 mlynedd nesaf, tyfodd enwogrwydd a llwyddiant Caradog nes iddo gyrraedd y penllanw buddugoliaethus yn Crystal Palace. Cafodd Caradog ei gladdu yn Aberdâr, ac mae ei gerflun yn sefyll yn falch yng nghanol y dref. Ond i’r hanesydd Phil Carradice, newidiodd Caradog a’i gôr ddelwedd Cymru a’r Cymry. Gwnaethant Gymru yn wlad y gân.

Diolch, Llywydd. I was educated at Caradog’s school in Aberdare.

Mae 27 Gorffennaf eleni yn nodi hanner canmlwyddiant dod i rym Deddf yr Iaith Gymraeg 1967. Er nad yw’r Ddeddf bellach mewn grym, wedi ei disodli gan Ddeddf yr Iaith Gymraeg 1993 a Mesur y Gymraeg (Cymru) 2011, mae’r Ddeddf yn arwyddocaol am ddau brif reswm. Yn gyntaf oll, fe ddiddymwyd y ddarpariaeth yn Neddf Cymru a Berwick 1746 y dylai’r term ‘Lloegr’ gynnwys Cymru. Dyma’r cam cyntaf ar y llwybr tuag at adfer awdurdodaeth gyfreithiol ar wahân i Gymru—taith nad ydym wedi ei gorffen eto.

Yn ail, ac am y tro cyntaf, fe osododd y Ddeddf hawliau i siaradwyr Cymraeg. Rhoddodd y Ddeddf ddilysrwydd cyfartal, fel y gelwid hi, i’r Gymraeg. Nid statws cyfartal â’r Saesneg oedd hwn; yn hytrach, darparwyd hawl i ddefnyddio’r Gymraeg gan gyrff cyhoeddus, megis gyda’r Saesneg, ond dim dyletswydd arnyn nhw i’w wneud. Er bod hyn yn wendid sylfaenol i’r Ddeddf, roedd yn fodd i osod yr egwyddor o gyfartaledd rhwng dwy iaith Cymru. Mae’n bwysig gweld Deddf yr Iaith Gymraeg yng nghyd-destun symudiadau chwyldroadol a dinesig y 1960au. Mae’n rhan o’r newid cymdeithasol a roddodd hawliau i bobl hoyw, i fenywod, drwy ffeministiaeth, ac i grwpiau difreintiedig. Oni bai am y Ddeddf iaith hon a gwaith yr ymgyrchwyr iaith y tu ôl iddi hi, ni fyddem yn cwrdd yr wythnos hon fel Senedd i drafod cenedl 1 filiwn o siaradwyr Cymraeg.

Diolch, Llywydd. Cefais fy addysg yn ysgol Caradog yn Aberdâr.

The twenty-seventh of July marks the fiftieth anniversary of the enactment of the Welsh Language Act of 1967. Although the Act is no longer in force, having been replaced by the Welsh Language Act of 1993 and the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure of 2011, the Act is significant for two main reasons. First of all, it repealed the provision in the Wales and Berwick Act of 1746 that the term ‘England’ should include Wales. This was a first step towards the restoration of a separate legal jurisdiction for Wales—a journey that we have yet to complete.

Secondly, and for the first time, the Act provided rights to Welsh speakers. The Act gave equal validity, as it was called, to the Welsh language—not equal status with English; rather, provision was made to give public bodies the right to use the Welsh language, as with English, but there was no duty on them to do that. Although this was a fundamental weakness of the Act, it was a means of setting down the principle of equality between the two languages of Wales. It’s important to see the Welsh Language Act in the context of revolutionary and civic changes in the 1960s, as part of the social change that gave rights to gay people, to women, through feminism, and to disadvantaged groups. Now, if it hadn’t been for this language Act and the work of language campaigners, we wouldn’t be meeting this week as a Parliament to discuss a nation of 1 million Welsh speakers.

5. 5. Cynnig i Gymeradwyo'r Cynllun Ieithoedd Swyddogol ar gyfer y Pumed Cynulliad a Nodi'r Adroddiad Cydymffurfio ar gyfer y Cyfnod 2015-2017
5. 5. Motion to Approve the Official Languages Scheme for the Fifth Assembly and Note the Compliance Report for the Period 2015-2017

Yr eitem nesaf ar ein hagenda ni yw’r cynnig i gymeradwyo’r cynllun ieithoedd swyddogol ar gyfer y pumed Cynulliad a nodi’r adroddiad cydymffurfio ar gyfer y cyfnod 2015-2017, ac rydw i’n galw ar Adam Price i wneud y cynnig.

The next item on our agenda is the motion to approve the official languages scheme for the fifth Assembly and to note the compliance report for the period 2015-2017, and I call on Adam Price to move the motion.

Cynnig NDM6365 Elin Jones

Cynnig bod Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru:

1. Yn cymeradwyo Cynllun Ieithoedd Swyddogol Comisiwn y Cynulliad, yn unol â pharagraff 8(11)(d) o Atodlen 2 i Ddeddf Llywodraeth Cymru 2006, a osodwyd gerbron Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru ar 5 Gorffennaf 2017; a

2. Yn nodi’r Adroddiad Cydymffurfio ar Gynllun Ieithoedd Swyddogol Comisiwn y Cynulliad ar gyfer y cyfnod 2015-2017, yn unol â pharagraff 8(8) o Atodlen 2 i Ddeddf Llywodraeth Cymru 2006, a osodwyd gerbron Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru ar 5 Gorffennaf 2017.

Motion NDM6365 Elin Jones

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

1. Approves the Assembly Commission’s Official Languages Scheme, in accordance with paragraph 8(11)(d) of Schedule 2 of the Government of Wales Act 2006, laid before the National Assembly for Wales on 5 July 2017; and

2. Notes the Compliance Report on the Assembly Commission’s Official Languages Scheme for the period 2015-2017, in accordance with paragraph 8(8) of Schedule 2 of the Government of Wales Act 2006, laid before the National Assembly for Wales on 5 July 2017.

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Mae’n briodol iawn inni gael y ddadl yma, wrth gwrs, yn dilyn y datganiad y mae Simon Thomas newydd ei wneud. Mae’n wir beth mae’n ei ddweud, wrth gwrs: adroddiad comisiwn Hughes-Parry, rydw i’n meddwl, oedd yn sail, wrth gwrs, i’r Ddeddf honno, a’r comisiwn yna, mewn ffordd, oedd comisiwn Wolfenden yr iaith Gymraeg. Ac nid oedd y Ddeddf, wrth gwrs, wedi gwireddu’r nod uchel oedd wedi cael ei osod gan y comisiwn hwnnw o ran sicrhau cyfartalrwydd i’r iaith Gymraeg, ond, wrth gwrs, mi osodwyd y seilwaith o ran yr hyn a gyflawnwyd yn y Deddfau a ddaeth wedyn.

Mae’n bleser gen i heddiw, felly, ar ran y Comisiwn, gyflwyno’r cynllun ieithoedd swyddogol ar gyfer y pumed Cynulliad a’r adroddiad cydymffurfio ar gyfer misoedd olaf y pedwerydd Cynulliad a blwyddyn gyntaf y pumed.

Cyfeiriaf yn gyntaf, felly, at yr adroddiad cydymffurfio sy’n adrodd ar ein gwaith, yn crisialu’r cynnydd dros y cyfnod dan sylw, ac yn dod â chynllun ieithoedd swyddogol y pedwerydd Cynulliad i ben. Gwnaethpwyd llawer o waith dros y cyfnod hwn yn paratoi ar gyfer croesawu’r Aelodau Cynulliad newydd ar ôl yr etholiad, wrth gwrs, ac yn sicrhau bod yr arferion da o ran darparu gwasanaethau dwyieithog a sefydlwyd yn y pedwerydd Cynulliad yn parhau. Gosodwyd sylfeini cadarn er mwyn sicrhau bod Comisiwn y Cynulliad yn parhau i gynnig gwasanaethau dwyieithog o’r radd flaenaf i Aelodau Cynulliad a’u staff a phobl Cymru. Mae’n wir dweud bod Aelodau Cynulliad newydd, rwy’n credu, wedi eu taro—rhai ohonyn nhw—gan ddwyieithrwydd naturiol y sefydliad hwn a’r ymrwymiad cryf gan holl staff y Comisiwn i ddarparu gwasanaethau seneddol rhagorol yn y ddwy iaith.

Wrth gwrs, nid yw’n bosib i unrhyw sefydliad gyrraedd y nod 100 y cant o’r amser, ac mae’r adroddiad hefyd yn sôn am yr adegau hynny pan nad ydym ni wedi llwyddo i gyrraedd y nod hwnnw. Wrth baratoi’r adroddiad cydymffurfio, cawsom gyfle i sicrhau ein bod ni’n dysgu oddi wrth yr achosion hynny a rhoi trefniadau ar waith i sicrhau nad yw’r un peth yn digwydd eto. Mae adborth gan ein—wel, nid wyf i’n siŵr taw ‘cwsmeriaid’ ydym ni, ond yn sicr, Aelodau Cynulliad a’u staff cymorth, a phobl Cymru, sydd yn greiddiol, wrth gwrs, i’r hyn ydym ni’n ceisio ei gyflawni yn y cyd-destun yma, yn helpu i ddysgu a gwella.

I droi, felly, at y cynllun ieithoedd swyddogol newydd, mae’n ofynnol i Gomisiwn y Cynulliad gyflwyno cynllun diwygiedig ar gyfer pob Cynulliad. Wrth baratoi’r cynllun, yn unol â Deddf ieithoedd swyddogol 2012, rydym wedi edrych ar yr arferion gorau o ran gweithio dwyieithog ar draws Cymru ac, a dweud y gwir, y tu hwnt, ac wedi ymgynghori yn eang. Am y tro cyntaf, er enghraifft, mae Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu wedi craffu ar y cynllun drafft. Roedd hyn yn ffordd o gynnig sicrwydd pellach nid yn unig i Aelodau, ond i’r bobl rydym ni’n eu cynrychioli, fod y cynllun yn un cadarn a phwrpasol. Hoffwn ddiolch i Gadeirydd ac aelodau’r pwyllgor am eu parodrwydd i ymgymryd â’r gwaith yn y ffordd fanwl a thrwyadl y gwnaethon nhw.

Bydd y rheini ohonoch sydd yn gyfarwydd â’r cynllun ieithoedd swyddogol ar gyfer y pedwerydd Cynulliad yn gweld rhai newidiadau i’r ffordd y mae’r cynllun wedi cael ei strwythuro. Y nod wrth wneud hynny oedd sicrhau bod y cynllun yn parhau yn amserol ac yn berthnasol ar gyfer y pumed Cynulliad ar ei hyd. Mae’r safonau gwasanaeth y gall ein Haelodau a’u staff cymorth, pobl Cymru a staff y Comisiwn eu disgwyl wedi eu hamlinellu yn gyntaf yn y cynllun. Wedi hynny, rydym ni’n pennu pum thema y byddwn yn canolbwyntio arnyn nhw dros dymor y pumed Cynulliad. Bydd y gwaith ar y themâu hyn yn ein harwain i fod yn gorff sydd yn gweithredu’n gwbl ddwyieithog ac yn trin y Gymraeg a’r Saesneg yn gyfartal. Dyna’r nod lefel uchel, wrth gwrs, sydd yn ganolog i’r cynllun.

Er mwyn inni wireddu’r uchelgais hon, bydd angen sicrhau ein bod yn darparu gwasanaethau dwyieithog rhagorol yn naturiol ac yn ddiofyn. I wneud hyn, bydd angen cymryd camau breision ar adegau gan gynnwys ailystyried y ffordd y byddwn yn pennu gofynion ieithyddol swyddi, a defnyddio dulliau recriwtio amgen ac arloesol pan na fyddwn ni’n llwyddo i ddenu ymgeiswyr gyda’r sgiliau iaith angenrheidiol trwy ddulliau traddodiadol.

Byddwn hefyd yn parhau â’r gwaith sydd eisoes wedi dechrau o ran hyfforddiant sgiliau iaith i Aelodau Cynulliad a’u staff cymorth a staff y Comisiwn, gan sicrhau wedi hynny ein bod ni’n darparu hyfforddiant hyblyg a phwrpasol i bawb sy’n dymuno datblygu neu wella eu sgiliau iaith Gymraeg.

Trwy gydol y pumed Cynulliad, byddwn yn canolbwyntio ar gynllunio ieithyddol fel arf i’n helpu ni i sicrhau bod y sgiliau priodol gan ein staff i ddarparu gwasanaethau dwyieithog yn rhagweithiol. Bydd hyn yn cynnwys adolygu’r strategaeth sgiliau dwyieithog, ac edrych ar ffyrdd o gaslgu gwybodaeth gyfoes am sgiliau iaith y sefydliad wrth i ni fynd ymlaen yn ystod y tymor hwn. Wrth gwrs, mae’n bwysig ein bod ni yn cefnogi Aelodau Cynulliad i ymgymryd â’u rôl fel Aelodau etholedig, ac mae’n dda gweld y brwdfrydedd, a dweud y gwir, ymhlith Aelodau sydd yn dysgu. Nid ydw i’n siŵr a ydw i i fod i ddatgan buddiant fan hyn—wrth gwrs, mae fy mrawd yn un o’r tiwtoriaid iaith. Ond rydw i’n gweld, wrth siarad gydag Aelodau, bod yna frwdfrydedd gwirioneddol, a dweud y gwir, yn cael ei fynegi gan Aelodau Cynulliad, a’r un peth, wrth gwrs, gyda’u staff cymorth a staff y Cynulliad—staff y Comisiwn—o ran eu profiad nhw o ddarpariaeth yr hyfforddiant sydd ar gael.

A’r thema olaf yw datblygu ethos dwyieithog y sefydliad. Fel y soniais i, rŷm ni eisiau cael ein hadnabod fel sefydliad dwyieithog, ble mae’r ddwy iaith i’w clywed yn naturiol. Ac rŷm ni wedi cael adborth arbennig o gadarnhaol gan Gomisiynydd y Gymraeg yn y cyswllt yma, yn dilyn cynhadledd flynyddol Cymdeithas Ryngwladol y Comisiynwyr Iaith ar ein hystâd ni fan hyn. Nododd bod ymwelwyr o bob cwr o’r byd wedi mwynhau clywed y Gymraeg yn fyw o’u cwmpas yn ystod digwyddiad a gynhaliwyd yma yn y Senedd. Fodd bynnag, i fod yn sefydliad gwirioneddol ddwyieithog, mae mwy o waith i’w wneud. Byddwn yn edrych ar ffyrdd o adnabod staff dwyieithog ar yr ystâd, gan adeiladu ar lwyddiant y cortynnau gwddf i ddysgwyr a gyflwynwyd yn ystod y pedwerydd Cynulliad. Byddwn hefyd yn edrych ar sut y gallwn ni ddefnyddio technoleg i’n cynorthwyo i fod yn arloesol ac yn flaengar yn y maes yma bob amser.

Felly, gyda’r sylwadau cychwynnol hynny, edrychaf ymlaen i glywed sylwadau fy nghyd-Aelodau.

It’s very appropriate for us to have this debate, of course, following the statement that Simon Thomas has just made. It’s true what he says, of course: the Hughes-Parry commission report, I think it was, was the basis for the Act, and that commission, in a way, was the Wolfenden commission for the Welsh language. And the Act didn’t achieve the highest aim we had that was set by that commission in terms of ensuring parity for the Welsh language, but the foundations were laid with regard to what was achieved in the ensuing Acts.

It gives me great pleasure, on behalf of the Assembly Commission, to introduce this official languages scheme for the fifth Assembly and the compliance report for the final months of the fourth Assembly and the first year of the fifth.

First of all, I’ll refer to the compliance report that reports on our work, that crystallises our progress over the period in question and that concludes the fourth Assembly’s official languages scheme. A great deal of work was done during this period to prepare to welcome the new Assembly Members, following the election, of course, and to ensure that the good practice with regard to the provision of bilingual services established during the fourth Assembly continues. Firm foundations were laid to ensure that the Assembly Commission continues to offer excellent bilingual services to Assembly Members, their staff and the people of Wales. It is true to say that the new Assembly Members, I believe, have been struck—some of them—by the institution’s natural bilingualism and the strong commitment by all Commission staff to provide exemplary parliamentary services in both languages.

Of course, it’s not possible for everything or all organisations to achieve their aims 100 per cent all the time, and the report also mentions those occasions when we haven’t succeeded in hitting the mark. While compiling the compliance report, we had an opportunity to ensure that we learned from those occasions and initiate changes to ensure that they don’t recur. Feedback from our—well, I don’t know whether ‘customers’ is the right word, but certainly Assembly Members, their support staff and the people of Wales, which are at the heart of what we’re trying to achieve in this context, helps us to learn and improve.

So, turning to the new official languages scheme, the Assembly Commission is required to table an amended scheme for each Assembly. In preparing this scheme, in accordance with the official languages Act 2012, we’ve looked at best practice with regard to working bilingually across Wales and, indeed, beyond, and we have consulted widely. For the first time, for example, the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee has scrutinised the draft scheme. This was a way of providing further assurance, not just to Members but to the people we represent, that the scheme is robust and meaningful. I’d like to thank the Chair and members of the committee for their willingness to undertake this work in such a thorough and detailed manner.

Those of you who are familiar with the fourth Assembly’s official languages scheme will see some changes in the way that this scheme is structured. The aim in making these changes was to ensure that the scheme remains timely and relevant for the duration of the fifth Assembly. The standard of service that our Members, their support staff, the people of Wales and Commission staff can expect are outlined first in the scheme. Following that, we’ve set our five main themes that will be our focus during the fifth Assembly term. Work on these themes will allow us to become a body that operates fully bilingually, with Welsh and English on an equal footing. That’s the high-level aim that is at the heart of the scheme.

In order for us to achieve this ambition, we must ensure that we provide excellent bilingual services naturally and by default. To do this, we will need to make great strides at times, including reconsidering the way that we consider the way that we set the language requirements of particular posts, as well as using alternative and innovative recruitment methods when we do not succeed in attracting applicants with the language skills required via traditional means.

We’ll also continue with work already begun regarding language skills training for Assembly Members, their support staff and Commission staff, ensuring that we provide flexible and meaningful training to all of those who wish to develop or improve their Welsh language skills.

Throughout the fifth Assembly, we will focus on linguistic planning as a lever to help us ensure that our staff have the appropriate skills to provide bilingual services in a proactive manner. This will include revising the bilingual skills strategy, and considering ways of gathering up-to-date information about language skills in the organisation as we go through this term. And, of course, it’s important that we support Assembly Members in their role as elected Members, and it’s great to see the enthusiasm among Members who are learning Welsh. I don’t know whether I should declare an interest here—my brother is one of the language tutors. But I do see, in speaking to Members, that there is genuine enthusiasm being expressed by Assembly Members, and also their support staff and Commission staff, with regard to their experience of the training provision available.

The final theme will be to develop the institution’s bilingual ethos. As I mentioned, we do want to be recognised as a bilingual organisation, where both languages are to be heard naturally. And we’ve received particularly positive feedback from the Welsh Language Commissioner in this context, following the annual conference of the International Association of Language Commissioners on our estate. She noted that visitors from all corners of the earth had enjoyed hearing Welsh as a living language around them during an event held here on the estate, in the Senedd. However, to be a genuinely bilingual organisation, there is more work to be done, and we’ll consider ways of identifying bilingual staff on the estate, building on the success of the lanyards for learners introduced during the fourth Assembly. We’ll also look at how we can use technology to support us in being innovative and in the vanguard of developments in this field at all times.

So, with those opening remarks, I look forward to hearing the comments of my fellow Members.

Galwaf ar Gadeirydd y Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu, Bethan Jenkins.

I call on the Chair of the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee, Bethan Jenkins.

Diolch, Llywydd, a diolch i Adam Price am ei araith yn hynny o beth. Yn ein cyfarfod ar 10 Mai, trafododd y Pwyllgor Diwylliant, y Gymraeg a Chyfathrebu y cynllun ieithoedd swyddogol drafft, fel yr amlinellwyd yn flaenorol, a chawsom dystiolaeth lafar gan Adam Price, Comisiynydd y Cynulliad ar yr iaith Gymraeg, a chan swyddogion y Cynulliad hefyd. Fodd bynnag, cyn craffu ar y cynllun drafft, cytunodd y pwyllgor y byddai’n ddefnyddiol cynnal ymgynghoriad cyhoeddus cyfyngedig i geisio barn sefydliadau a allai fod o ddiddordeb yn y maes hwn. A chawsom ni ymatebion gan Gomisiynydd y Gymraeg, Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg, Cymdeithas Cyfreithwyr Cymru, y mentrau iaith, ac undebau llafur Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru.

Ar ôl cael tystiolaeth gan Adam, ysgrifennais ato i grynhoi barn y pwyllgor am y cynllun drafft. Mae fy llythyr i’w gael ar agenda’r Cyfarfod Llawn fel papur ategol, yn ogystal â’r ymateb a gefais gan Adam. Roedd Aelodau yn fodlon, ar y cyfan, â’r cynllun drafft, ac yn cydnabod y gefnogaeth gyffredinol ardderchog a oedd ar gael iddynt, i’w helpu i wneud eu gwaith yn nwy iaith swyddogol y Cynulliad. Yn ystod y cyfarfod, trafodwyd nifer o’r materion a godwyd yn yr ymgynghoriad. Fodd bynnag, yn fy llythyr, gofynnais am sicrwydd ynghylch nifer o bwyntiau cyn gofyn i’r Cynulliad fabwysiadu’r cynllun yn ffurfiol.

Roedd y materion hyn yn cynnwys hygyrchedd gwefan y Cynulliad ar gyfer pobl â nam ar eu golwg, a’r ffaith nad oedd y fersiwn Gymraeg o’r rhyngrwyd yn ddealladwy, gan ei bod yn defnyddio ffoneteg y Saesneg. Ond rwyf yn falch o nodi bod gwaith ar y gweill i fynd i’r afael â’r mater hwn, er y byddwn yn ddiolchgar pe gallai Adam Price gadarnhau y bydd gwefan y Cynulliad yn defnyddio’r lleisiau synthetig newydd cyn gynted ag y bo modd. Holwyd hefyd a allai meddalwedd Microsoft Translator helpu i ddatblygu sgiliau iaith defnyddwyr. Unwaith eto, rwyf yn falch o nodi bod hyfforddiant ychwanegol ar gael os oes angen.

Mae’r cynllun braidd yn brin o dargedau meintiol. Esboniodd Adam Price nad oedd Comisiwn y Cynulliad yn argyhoeddedig mai targedau meintiol yw’r ffordd orau o reidrwydd o greu sefydliad gwirioneddol ddwyieithog. Roedd ymateb Adam Price yn cynnwys rhagor o wybodaeth am rai o’r ffyrdd mwyaf ansoddol a rheolaidd a gaiff eu defnyddio o fonitro llwyddiant y cynllun. Ond byddai’n dda gweld targedau o ran hyfforddiant i’r gweithle yn y cynllun, yn ôl cymdeithas yr iaith. A fyddai’r Comisiwn efallai yn fodlon ailystyried hwn, a rhoi’r fath dargedau yn eu lle?

Credaf fod angen ystyried ymhellach a ellid pennu targedau mesuradwy, a allai fod yn gymhelliant i wella, er mwyn i ni fel Cynulliad sgrwtineiddio’r hyn sydd yn digwydd o ran y cynllun iaith, ac er mwyn i’r cyhoedd sgrwtineiddio’r hyn sydd yn digwydd yn y cynllun iaith. Gofynnodd y pwyllgor hefyd am ragor o wybodaeth am y dull newydd o recriwtio a amlinellir yn y cynllun drafft. Roedd y pwyllgor yn gyffredinol o blaid y fframwaith rhuglder newydd, a fydd yn golygu y bydd angen i bob aelod newydd o staff yn y dyfodol ddangos cwrteisi ieithyddol sylfaenol o leiaf. Caiff hyn ei ddiffinio fel y gallu i adnabod, ynganu a defnyddio ymadroddion ac enwau cyfarwydd, ac i ddeall testunau sylfaenol, fel negeseuon e-bost syml.

Fodd bynnag, nid oes llawer o wybodaeth yn y cynllun drafft ynghylch sut y byddai hyn yn gweithio yn ymarferol. Sylwais fod Adam yn ei ymateb yn dweud y caiff gweithgor ei sefydlu i sicrhau y bydd y system arfaethedig yn addas i’r diben hwn. Er nad wyf yn credu ei fod yn rheswm i wrthod y cynllun yma heddiw, rhaid i mi ddweud fy mod yn ei chael hi braidd yn od fod cynnig gerbron y Cynulliad i gymeradwyo cynllun sy’n cynnwys un elfen allweddol na fydd efallai yn addas i’r diben yn y pen draw. Efallai yr hoffai Adam Price a’r Comisiwn gnoi cil ar hynny. Hefyd, yn ei dystiolaeth lafar, cadarnhaodd Adam Price y byddai’r dull newydd o recriwtio yn cael ei gymhwyso’n wirfoddol i staff presennol, ac na fyddai’r gallu i siarad Cymraeg yn rhan allweddol o benderfyniadau’n ymwneud â dyrchafu neu hyrwyddo staff. Fodd bynnag, yn ei ymateb a ysgrifennodd i’r pwyllgor, mae Adam yn dweud y byddai angen i staff sy’n gwneud cais am swyddi gwag neu swyddi newydd, ac rwy’n dyfynnu,

ddangos lefel sgiliau iaith sy’n gysylltiedig â’r swydd honno.’

Mae hynny, wrth gwrs, ychydig yn wahanol, a byddwn yn ddiolchgar pe gallai Adam egluro’r rheswm dros y gwahaniaeth rhwng yr hyn a ddywedodd yn ei dystiolaeth lafar â’r hyn a ddywedodd yn ei ymateb ysgrifenedig.

Roedd y pwyllgor hefyd yn pryderu am y gofyniad i unrhyw staff newydd ddangos cwrteisi ieithyddol sylfaenol, gan y gallai hynny effeithio ar y gallu i recriwtio staff o grwpiau heb gynrychiolaeth ddigonol, yn enwedig staff BME. Roedd Adam Price wedi paratoi asesiad o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb i liniaru rhai o’r pryderon hynny.

Thank you, Llywydd, and thank you to Adam Price for his opening remarks in this regard. In our meeting on 10 May, the Culture, Welsh Language and Communications Committee considered the draft official languages scheme, as previously mentioned, and we heard oral evidence from Adam Price, the Assembly Commissioner with responsibility for official languages, and from Assembly officials. However, before scrutinising the draft scheme, the committee agreed that it would be helpful to hold a limited public consultation to seek the views of organisations that may have an interest in this area. We received written responses from the Welsh Language Commissioner, Cymdeithas yr Iaith Gymraeg, the Law Society of Wales, ‘mentrau iaith’, and National Assembly for Wales trade unions.

After hearing evidence from Adam Price, I wrote to him to summarise the committee’s views on the draft scheme. My letter is available on the Plenary agenda as a supporting paper, as is Adam’s response. Members were broadly content with the draft scheme, and acknowledged the generally excellent support they received to help them carry out their work in both of the Assembly’s official languages. Many of the issues raised in our consultation were addressed during questioning. However, my letter did ask for assurances on a number of points before the Assembly was asked to formally adopt the scheme.

These areas included the accessibility of the Assembly’s website for visually impaired people, and that the Welsh version of the interface was not intelligible in Welsh, as it was phonetically in English. I am pleased to note that there is work under way to address this issue, although I’d be grateful if Adam Price could confirm that the Assembly website will use the new synthetic voices as soon as possible. We also asked whether the Microsoft Translator software could be used to help develop the language skills of users. Again, I am pleased to note that further training is available if needed.

The scheme is somewhat lacking in quantitative targets. Adam Price explained to us that the Assembly Commission is not convinced that quantitative targets are necessarily the best way of becoming a truly bilingual organisation. Adam Price’s response set out further information on some of the more qualitative and regular ways in which the success of the scheme will be monitored. Nevertheless, it would be good to see targets for workplace training in the scheme, according to cymdeithas yr iaith. Would the Commission perhaps be willing to reconsider this, and to give us those kinds of targets?

I believe that we need to consider further whether qualitative and quantitative targets could be set as an incentive for improvement, so that we as an Assembly can scrutinise what’s happening with regard to the languages scheme, and so that the public can also scrutinise what’s happening in the languages scheme. The committee also asked for more information about the new approach to recruitment set out in the draft scheme. The committee was broadly in favour of the new fluency framework, which will mean that in future all new staff will need to demonstrate at least basic linguistic courtesy. This is defined as the ability to recognise, pronounce and use familiar phrases and names and to understand basic text, such as simple e-mails.

However, there is little information in the draft scheme about how this would work in practice. I note from Adam’s response that a working group is to be established to ensure that the proposed system is fit for this purpose. While I don’t think it’s a reason to reject the scheme today, I must admit that I find it a little odd that the Assembly is being asked to approve a scheme where one of the key innovations proposed may turn out not to be fit for purpose ultimately. Perhaps Adam Price and the Commission may wish to reflect on that. Also, Adam Price, in his evidence, confirmed that the new recruitment approach would only apply voluntarily to existing staff, and being able to speak Welsh would not be a key part of decisions about staff promotion or advancement. However, in his written response to the committee, Adam has said that staff applying for vacant or new posts would need to, and I quote,

demonstrate the language skills level associated with that post.’

That is, of course, a rather different approach, and I’d be grateful if Adam could clarify the reason for the difference between the approach outlined in his oral evidence and that in the written response.

The committee also expressed concerns that the requirement for all new staff to demonstrate basic linguistic courtesy may have an impact on the recruitment of staff from under-represented groups, particularly BME staff. Adam Price provided the committee with an equality impact assessment that had been prepared to help mitigate some of those concerns.

Daeth y Dirprwy Lywydd (Ann Jones) i’r Gadair.

The Deputy Presiding Officer (Ann Jones) took the Chair.

Mae e braidd yn siomedig fod y pwyllgor wedi cael cais i beidio â chyhoeddi’r asesiad hwn am resymau gweinyddol. Gan hynny, ni all Aelodau eraill y Cynulliad, na’r cyhoedd yn gyffredinol, farnu a yw’r mesurau lliniaru yn y cyswllt hwn yn ddigonol, ac mae’n bwysig ei fod e’n cael ei gyhoeddi cyn gynted ag y bo modd. Ac ychwanegiad hoffwn i ei ddweud yn hynny o beth yw ein bod ni yn gofyn yn aml i Lywodraeth Cymru gyhoeddi y pethau yma, ac rydw i’n credu ei bod hi’n bwysig bod y Cynulliad yn dangos yr un parodrwydd i gyhoeddi yn hynny o beth. Cytunodd y pwyllgor i barchu’r cais hwn, ond mae’r asesiad o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb yn rhan bwysig o benderfynu a yw mesurau lliniaru yn y cyswllt hwn yn ddigonol, ac mae’n bwysig ei fod e’n cael ei gyhoeddi cyn gynted ag y bo modd. Er yr hyn rydw i wedi codi cwestiynau yn eu cylch, byddwn i’n dal am i’r cynllun yma basio, ac rydw i’n diolch yn fawr iawn i Adam Price a’r tîm am weithio ar y rhaglen yma. Gobeithio y byddwn ni’n gallu sgrwtineiddio hwn eto yn y dyfodol. Diolch yn fawr iawn.

It’s somewhat disappointing that the committee was asked not to publish this assessment for administrative reasons. This means that other members of the Assembly and the wider public are unable to judge whether the mitigation measures it outlines are sufficient. It’s important that this is published as soon as possible. And an addition that I would like to mention is that we often ask the Welsh Government to publish these things, and I think it’s important that the Assembly does show the same willingness to publish in this regard. The committee agreed to respect this particular request, but the equality impact assessment is an important part of deciding whether mitigation measures in this area are sufficient and it is important that it is published as soon as possible. Despite all that I’ve said and the questions I’ve asked, I would still wish for this scheme to pass, and I am very grateful to Adam Price and the team for working on this particular programme. We hope that we will be able to scrutinise it again in future. Thank you very much.

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd, ac a gaf ddiolch hefyd i Adam am ddod â’r cynllun newydd yma cyn toriad yr haf? Hoffwn hefyd estyn fy niolch i staff y Comisiwn, sydd wedi gweithio mor galed i weithredu’r cynllun blaenorol ac i baratoi yr un newydd. Hoffwn ddechrau gyda’r adroddiad cydymffurfio blynyddol, os yw hynny’n ocê. Nid oes llawer ynddo am gwynion cydymffurfio, felly rwy’n tybio na fu llawer o gwynion am ddiffyg cydymffurfio, a’r rhai sydd wedi cael eu derbyn wedi cael eu trin yn gyflym. Mae hyn yn newyddion braf, ond, fel gyda gweddill yr adroddiad, fel y mae Bethan wedi ei ddweud, rwy’n credu y byddai wedi bod yn fwy grymus pe gallem wedi gweld perfformiad yn erbyn unrhyw dargedau a syniad o gostau gweithredu hefyd.

Rwy’n gweld, ac yn derbyn, wrth gwrs, bod y cynllun newydd yn cymryd y mater o dargedu a strwythurau, a byddwn yn gobeithio gweld cyfeiriad at y rhain mewn adroddiadau blynyddol yn y dyfodol. Ond codaf hyn yma gan ei fod yn dipyn o gyfle a gollwyd yn fy marn i, oherwydd mai ein profiad byw fel Aelodau yw ein bod ni wedi gweld gwelliannau sylweddol yn ein gallu i weithio’n ddwyieithog ac yn natblygiad ethos ddwyieithog y Cynulliad fel sefydliad. Ond gallai’r adroddiad hwn fod wedi dweud wrthym faint o aelodau staff y Comisiwn sydd wedi gwella’u sgiliau eu hunain, i ba fath o lefel, ac yma mha feysydd, er enghraifft, sut mae’r ymchwil ar ddewis iaith pob Aelod wedi gwneud cefnogaeth i’n gwaith pwyllgorau a’r Cyfarfod Llawn yn fwy effeithlon o ran amser ac, wrth gwrs, cost, hyd yn oed, sut y mae cyfathrebu dwyieithog gyda’r cyhoedd wedi ysgogi unrhyw wahaniaeth yn y ffordd y mae’r cyhoedd yn ymgysylltu â sefydliad y Cynulliad—jest er mwyn gweld mewn ffordd rydym ni’n gallu ei ddeall sut y mae’r gwelliant yn cael ei wneud. Mae’n ffordd o asesu effeithiolrwydd ein cynllun wrth gyflawni ein nodau—mwy nag adroddiad cydymffurfiaeth syml.

Rwy’n credu ein bod ni wedi cymryd camau mawr fel sefydliad, fel y dywedoch chi, Adam, gan gymryd ofn, amheuaeth, a hyd yn oed ceryddu, allan o weithio mewn gweithle dwyieithog, waeth beth yw eich sgiliau eich hun a waeth beth yw dewisiadau ieithyddol eich cydweithwyr. Rwy’n cynnig llongyfarchiadau cynnes i staff y Comisiwn am eu llwyddiant gyda’r cynllun blaenorol, ond rydw i’n gobeithio y bydd yr adroddiad blynyddol nesaf yn gallu rhoi rhai ffigurau, yn ogystal â’r naratif positif, i ni. Gofynnwn hyn gan y Llywodraeth, fel y dywedodd Bethan, ac mae’n rhaid i ni ofyn hyn i ni ein hunain hefyd.

Mae gan y Comisiwn dri nod cyffredinol. Y cyntaf yw cynnig cymorth seneddol rhagorol dwyieithog i Aelodau, ac rwy’n credu ei fod yn gwneud hynny—deall ein dewisiadau iaith, gwelliannau mewn cyfieithu digidol, a gwersi Cymraeg i ni a’n staff mewn ffordd wedi ei deilwra’n fwy. Mae gyda ni ‘buddies’ nawr i’n helpu ni, os rydym yn dewis bod yn fwy dwyieithog. Mae gyda ni fynediad at gronfa cyfieithu canolog i’n helpu ddefnyddio’r ddwy iaith heb anghyfleustra na ddraenio cyllideb ein swyddfa, ac mae gyda ni record o drafodion gyflymach yn y ddwy iaith a deunyddiau dwyieithog hefyd.

Ond y gair yw ‘cefnogi’, nid ‘cyfarwyddo’, a thra dylai Aelodau, yn fy marn bersonol, ystyried sut y gallem gyfrannu’n weithredol at ethos dwyieithog y sefydliad, mae’n fater i’r sefydliad ein hannog a’n galluogi ni, ond nid i ddweud wrthym sut i wneud hynny.

Mae’r cynllun yn berthnasol i sefydliad y Cynulliad ac mae ei ffocws, yn gwbl briodol, ar sut mae’r sefydliad ei hun yn ymgysylltu â phobl Cymru ac yn hyrwyddo’r Cynulliad ei hun—yr ail o amcanion strategol y Comisiwn. Mae gofynion ar staff y Comisiwn yn cael eu nodi’n glir yn rhan 2 o’r cynllun, sydd yn ei wneud yn haws i unrhyw un sy’n ymwneud â’r Cynulliad ei hun wybod beth y gallant ei ddisgwyl fel hawl. Mae’n galonogol felly bod y cynllun newydd yn canolbwyntio ar sgiliau recriwtio ac iaith. Rwy’n falch iawn bod cynnydd mewn caffael sgiliau’r iaith Gymraeg sy’n berthnasol i rôl benodol, a fydd yn cael ei ddathlu mewn adolygiadau rheoli perfformiad.

Trydydd amcan y Comisiwn yw defnyddio adnoddau yn ddoeth. Nid yw hyn yn meddwl arian yn unig wrth gwrs, ond cyfalaf dynol yn ogystal. Hoffwn i’r adroddiad nesaf grynhoi’r cynnydd o ran yr adolygiad o strategaeth sgiliau dwyieithog y Cynulliad a sut y mae adnabod aelodau staff dwyieithog wedi gwneud newid i gefnogaeth seneddol ac ymgysylltu â’r cyhoedd. Mae’n mynd yn dda—mae gyda ni lawer i fod yn falch ohono, a byddai’n grêt i weld mwy o bobl yn y Cynulliad yn gwisgo’r ‘lanyards’ yma yn y dyfodol. Diolch.

May I thank Adam for bringing this new scheme to us before the summer recess? I would also like to extend my thanks to the Commission staff, who have worked so hard to implement the predecessor scheme and to prepare the new one. I’d like to start with the annual compliance report, if I may. There isn’t a huge amount in there on compliance complaints, and therefore I assume that there weren’t too many complaints regarding compliance, and those that were received were dealt with swiftly. This is good news, but, as with the rest of the report, as Bethan has said, I think it would have been more powerful if we could have seen performance against targets and had an idea of the costs of implementation too.

I do accept of course that the new scheme does take the issue of targets and structures forward, and I would hope to see reference to these in future annual compliance reports. But I raise it here because it is a bit of a missed opportunity in my view, because our living experience as Members is that we have seen significant improvements in our ability to work bilingually and in the development of the bilingual ethos within the Assembly as an institution. But this report could have told us how many Commission staff members have improved their own skills, to what levels those skills have been taken and in what areas, how research on the language choices of Members has made support for our committee and Plenary work more effective in terms of time and cost, even, how bilingual communication with the public has sparked any difference in the way in which the public engages with the Assembly—just so that we can see in a tangible way just how these improvements are being made. It is a means of assessing the effectiveness of our scheme and of achieving our aims—more than a simple compliance report.

I think that we have taken major steps as an organisation, as you’ve said, Adam, taking the fear and doubt out of working in a bilingual environment, whatever your skill levels are and whatever your linguistic choice and the linguistic choice of your fellow workers. I offer hearty congratulations to Commission staff for the success of the predecessor scheme, but I do hope that the next compliance report can give us some figures as well as the positive narrative. We ask this of Government, as Bethan said, and we should expect the same from the Assembly itself.

The Commission has three aims. The first is to offer excellent bilingual parliamentary support to Members, and I think that’s being achieved—understanding our language choices, improvements in machine translation, and a more tailored approach to Welsh language learning. We have buddies now to help us, if we choose to become more bilingual. We have access to a central translation budget to help us to use both languages without it being inconvenient for us or draining our office budgets, we have a swifter turnaround in terms of a bilingual record of proceedings and also bilingual material.

But the word is ‘support’, not ‘direct’, and, in my view, whilst Members should consider how we can actively contribute to the bilingual ethos of the institution, it’s a matter for the organisation to encourage us and to enable us, but not to direct us as to how to do that.

The scheme is relevant to the Assembly and its focus is, entirely appropriately, on how the institution itself engages with the people of Wales and promotes the Assembly itself—the second of the strategic objectives of the Commission. The requirements on Commission staff are clearly noted in part 2 of the scheme, which makes it easier for anyone engaging with the Assembly to understand what they should expect as a right. It’s encouraging, therefore, that the new scheme focuses on skills, recruitment and language. I’m pleased that there has been progress on language acquisition that is relevant to specific posts, and that that will be celebrated in performance management reviews.

The third objective of the Commission is to use resources wisely. This doesn’t simply mean money, of course, but human capital, too, and I’d like the next report to summarise the progress made in terms of the bilingual skills strategy of the Assembly and how identifying bilingual staff has changed engagement with the public and parliamentary support. We have much to be proud of, it’s going well, and it would be great to see more people in the Assembly wearing these lanyards in the future. Thank you.

Thank you. I call on Adam Price to reply to the debate.

Diolch. Galwaf ar Adam Price i ymateb i’r ddadl.

Diolch, Dirprwy Lywydd. Rwy’n ddiolchgar i’r ddau Aelod am eu sylwadau’r prynhawn yma. Jest i ymateb, felly, yn gyntaf i sylwadau Bethan Jenkins fel Cadeirydd y pwyllgor, gwnaf gyfro gymaint ag y gallaf i yn ystod fy sylwadau, ond os ydw i’n anghofio unrhyw beth, gwnaf i ysgrifennu atoch chi.

O ran yr asesiad o’r effaith ar gydraddoldeb, rwy’n credu y gwnaethom ni ddweud yn y llythyr y byddem ni wrth gwrs yn hapus i’r pwyllgor benderfynu pa un ai i gyhoeddi neu beidio, ac rwy’n derbyn bod yna gynsail pwysig o ran egwyddor ac yn y blaen. Roedd yna resymau pam efallai nad oeddem eisiau ei gyhoeddi ar y pwynt yna, ond nid ydym ni’n gwrthwynebu, ac rwy’n deall pam yr oedd y Cadeirydd yn codi hynny.

O ran lleisiau synthetig, rwy’n credu efallai ein bod ni’n ymdreiddio i faes technegol nad ydw i’n sicr fod gen i grap llwyr arno fe. Rydw i’n deall bod yna waith wedi mynd ymlaen ar y cyd rhwng Llywodraeth Cymru a’r RNIB o ran darparu’r meddalwedd yma i ddefnyddwyr. Ac rwy’n credu’r cwestiwn, neu efallai beth sy’n bwysig, yw bod defnyddwyr, wrth gwrs, yn gwybod am argaeledd y dechnoleg yma wrth iddyn nhw geisio darllen gwaith y Cynulliad, ac yn y blaen, ond fe wnaf i ysgrifennu at y Cadeirydd, os caf i, ynglŷn â hynny.

Roedd yna gwestiwn ynglŷn â chyflwyno lefel cwrteisi sylfaenol, ac rydw i’n credu os oedd yna unrhyw amwysedd, arnaf i yn llwyr mae’r bai am hynny. Rydw i’n credu beth roeddwn i’n ceisio pwysleisio, wrth gwrs, yn y pwyllgor—sydd yn wir—oedd nad oes disgwyl i unrhyw ddeilydd swydd presennol gwrdd â’r angen newydd yma ar gyfer ei swydd bresennol. Pe baen nhw’n penderfynu ceisio am swydd newydd—felly, dyrchafiad neu swydd wag—wedyn, wrth gwrs, byddai hynny yn rhwym, yn golygu eu bod nhw’n gorfod cwrdd â’r lefel yna. Felly, os ydych chi’n cadw yn yr un swydd, nid ydych chi’n gorfod cwrdd â’r lefel, ond os ydych yn ymgeisio ar gyfer swydd newydd, mae yn effeithio ar y sefyllfa hwnnw.

O ran targedau meintiol, mae’n drafodaeth ddifyr, a dweud y gwir. Mae rhyw fath o wahaniaeth athronyddol, bron a bod: sut mae esgor ar lwyddiant? Mae yna rai sydd yn credu’n gryf, wrth gwrs, mewn grym targedau meintiol. Hynny yw, ein barn ni wrth edrych ar y cynllun oedd bod gosod nodau sydd yn dilyn y themâu rydym ni wedi eu gosod mas yn bwysicach o ran y cynllun, oherwydd bod rhai o’r nodau yn ansoddol o ran eu hanian, a dweud y gwir, a byddai’n anodd, gyda phob un ohonyn nhw, i gyfieithu hynny i mewn i nod. Hynny yw, beth yw arwyddocâd bod yn naturiol ddwyieithog o ran canran, er enghraifft, sy’n gallu siarad Cymraeg?

Ond, rydw i yn credu—ac yng nghyswllt yr hyn roedd Suzy Davies yn codi ynglŷn â’r adroddiad blynyddol—rydw i yn credu bod yna le i falanso, a dweud y gwir, y naratif gyda’r ffigyrau. Ac efallai beth hoffwn i ei wneud yw nawr cymryd i ffwrdd y sylwadau rydym ni wedi eu cael a gweld, yng nghyd-destun y monitro ar y cynllun—yr asesu, wrth gwrs, yn erbyn y nodau lefel uchel sydd yn y cynllun—sut mae hynny yn gallu cael ei gyfieithu i mewn i dargedau meintiol, fel ein bod ni yn flynyddol, wrth gwrs, fel Cynulliad ac yn allanol, yn gallu asesu’r cynnydd yn erbyn y nodau go uchelgeisiol rydym ni wedi eu gosod. Felly, os caf i, fe gymeraf i i ffwrdd y sylwadau hynny, a chnoi cil arnyn nhw. Mae monitro, wrth gwrs, yn mynd i fod yn bwysig iawn, ac rydym ni’n croesawu parhau, wrth gwrs, gyda rôl y pwyllgor yn hyn o beth, ac mae nifer o bwyllgorau eraill, wrth gwrs, wedi craffu ar wahanol elfennau o gynlluniau iaith yn ystod Cynulliadau o’r blaen, ac fe fyddwn ni’n croesawu hynny i’r un graddau.

Felly, gyda’r sylwadau hynny yn gyffredinol, rydym ni yn croesawu’r gefnogaeth gyffredinol sydd i’r cynllun ac yn edrych ymlaen at gydweithio gyda’r pwyllgor a gyda chi fel Aelodau’r Cynulliad, gan sicrhau bod y nod cyffrous ac uchelgeisiol sydd wedi cael ei osod yn y cynllun yma yn cael ei gwblhau.

I gloi, hoffwn i ddiolch yn fawr i fy rhagflaenydd yn y pedwerydd Cynulliad, Rhodri Glyn Thomas, am ei waith yn creu’r sylfeini cadarn yma y byddwn ni’n adeiladu arnyn nhw wrth symud ymlaen. Hoffwn i ddiolch hefyd i’m cyd-Aelod Dai Lloyd am ei waith fel y Comisiynydd â chyfrifoldeb am ieithoedd swyddogol cyn i mi etifeddu’r rôl wedi toriad yr haf y llynedd. A gaf i ddiolch hefyd, yn bennaf oll, i’r staff, i ddweud y gwir—staff y Comisiwn—am y gwaith rhagorol a diflino maen nhw i gyd yn ei wneud er mwyn sicrhau y nod yma, bod y sefydliad yma yn naturiol ddwyieithog ac yn ysbrydoli pobl—yn ysbrydoli sefydliadau eraill i ddangos yr hyn sy’n bosib nawr yn y Gymru gyfoes?

Thank you, Deputy Presiding Officer. I am very grateful to the two Members for their comments this afternoon. Just to respond first of all to Bethan Jenkins’s comments as Chair of the committee, I’ll cover as much as I can, but if I do forget anything, I will write to you.

With regard to the equality impact assessment, I think that we did say in the letter that we would be content for the committee to decide whether to publish the assessment or not, and I accept that there is an important principle in terms of that. There were reasons perhaps why we didn’t want to publish at that particular point in time, but I wouldn’t oppose that, and I understand why the Chair did raise that issue.

With regard to synthetic voices, I think that perhaps we are going into a technical field that I’m not certain I have a full grasp of, but I do understand that there work has gone on, on a joint basis, between the Welsh Government and the RNIB with regard to providing this software to users. And I think perhaps what is important is that users, of course, know about the availability of this technology as they then try to read about the Assembly’s work. But I will write to the Chair, if I may, with regard to that issue.

There was a question on the introduction of a basic level of linguistic courtesy, and if there is any ambiguity with regard to that, I’m sure that that’s my fault. What I was trying to emphasise in the committee is that there’s no expectation that any present job holder will meet this particular requirement in their current post. If they were to decide to apply for a new post, for a vacant position or as a promotion, they would then be subject to that particular level of linguistic courtesy. So, if you stay in the current post, then you don’t have to meet that requirement, but if you do apply for a new job, it will affect that particular situation.

With regard to the qualitative and quantitative targets, then it’s an interesting debate, isn’t it? Because it’s a philosophical debate, almost. How do you lead to success? Some believe very strongly in the power of quantitative targets. Our opinion, looking at the scheme, was that setting aims and objectives that correspond to the themes that we’ve set out was more important with regard to the scheme, because some of the aims are more descriptive in terms of their origin. So, it would be difficult, with regard to them, to translate that into a specific target. What is the significance of being naturally bilingual with regard to a percentage who are able to speak Welsh?

But I do think that, in the context of what Suzy Davies mentioned with regard to the annual report, there is room to strike a balance between the narrative and figures. And I think that what I would like to do is now to take away the comments that we’ve heard and to consider, in the context of monitoring the scheme, what assessment can be made against those high-level aims in the scheme and how that is then translated into quantitative targets so that we, on an annual basis, as an Assembly and externally, can assess progress against those ambitious targets and aims that we’ve set. So, if I may, I will take those comments away and will consider and reflect upon them. Of course, monitoring is going to be vitally important, and I would welcome the continuation of the committee’s role in this regard, and there are a number of other committees, of course, that have scrutinised different elements of the language schemes in previous Assemblies, and I would welcome that to the same extent.

So, with those few general comments, then, we welcome the general support for the scheme and we look forward to collaborating with the committee and with you as Assembly Members to ensure that this exciting and ambitious aim that has been set out in the scheme will be achieved.

To conclude, I would like to thank very much my predecessor in the fourth Assembly, Rhodri Glyn Thomas, for his work in laying these firm foundations that we will build upon as we move forward. I would also like to thank my fellow Member Dai Lloyd for his work as Commissioner with responsibility for official languages, before I inherited the role following the summer recess last year. May I also thank the staff, the Commission staff, for the excellent and tireless work that they do to ensure that we achieve this aim that this organisation is naturally a bilingual one and inspires people—inspires other organisations to show what’s possible now in the modern Wales?

Thank you very much. The proposal is to agree the motion. Does any Member object? No. Therefore, the motion is agreed in accordance with Standing Order 12.36.

Diolch yn fawr iawn. Y cynnig yw derbyn y cynnig. 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 gan Aelodau Unigol o dan Reol Sefydlog 11.21(iv): Canolfan Rhewmatoleg Bediatrig
6. 6. Debate by Individual Members under Standing Order 11.21(iv): A Paediatric Rheumatology Centre

We now move on to the next debate on our agenda this afternoon, which is a debate by individual Members under Standing Order 11.21 on a paediatric rheumatology centre. I call on David Melding to move the motion.

Symudwn ymlaen yn awr at y ddadl nesaf ar ein hagenda y prynhawn yma, sef dadl gan Aelodau unigol o dan Reol Sefydlog 11.21 ar ganolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig. Galwaf ar David Melding i gynnig y cynnig.

Cynnig NDM6348 David Melding, Dai Lloyd, Caroline Jones, Rhun ap Iorwerth, Julie Morgan

Cefnogwyd gan Nick Ramsay, Angela Burns, Darren Millar, Hefin David

Cynnig bod Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru:

1. Yn nodi mai Cymru yw’r unig un o’r gwledydd cartref sydd heb ganolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig arbenigol;

2. Yn nodi bod tua 400 o blant yn ne Cymru yn unig sy’n dioddef o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid;

3. Yn cydnabod yr angen am ganolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig amlddisgyblaeth yng Nghymru;

4. Yn nodi bod Pwyllgor Gwasanaethau Iechyd Arbenigol Cymru yn cynnal adolygiad cynhwysfawr o wasanaethau pediatrig arbenigol yng Nghymru; a

5. Yn galw ar Lywodraeth Cymru i gefnogi galwadau gan Gofal Arthritis, y Gymdeithas Arthritis Gwynegol Genedlaethol a Chymdeithas Brydeinig Rhewmatoleg ar gyfer creu canolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig amlddisgyblaeth benodedig lwyr yng Nghymru.

Motion NDM6348 David Melding, Dai Lloyd, Caroline Jones, Rhun ap Iorwerth, Julie Morgan

Supported by Nick Ramsay, Angela Burns, Darren Millar, Hefin David

To propose that the National Assembly for Wales:

1. Notes that Wales is the only home nation without a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre.

2. Notes that there are an estimated 400 children in South Wales alone that are suffering with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis.

3. Recognises the need for a multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

4. Notes that the Welsh Health Specialist Services Committee is undertaking a comprehensive review of paediatric specialised services in Wales.

5. Calls on the Welsh Government to support calls from Arthritis Care, the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society and the British Society for Rheumatology for the creation of a fully dedicated multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

Thank you very much, Deputy Presiding Officer, for calling me to move this very important motion, which is proposed also by Caroline Jones, Rhun ap Iorwerth, Dai Lloyd and Julie Morgan. I’m also very grateful to those Members who have supported this motion.

I’d like to open this debate with the story of a young girl from Haverfordwest. Her name is Aimee, and some of you may have met her during the drop-in event that was organised on awareness-raising of juvenile idiopathic arthritis only two weeks ago in the Pierhead building. I’m pleased to say I think nearly half of Assembly Members attended that event. This personal account has been given by Aimee’s father, Darren:

Aimee was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis just before her second birthday and it took us about six months to get a diagnosis. The local doctors didn’t think it was arthritis but I don’t think they knew much about arthritis in children. It took a lot of people by surprise. Aimee has to go to hospital every month—this means travelling to Cardiff, which is two hours away, a round trip of 230 miles. Once she’s had the treatment I can see a difference within a couple of days. The medical care in Cardiff has been very good and we are very grateful. However, locally it’s been disjointed and poor as there’s a massive lack of knowledge of arthritis in children. Travelling to Cardiff does put a massive strain on us. It means missing days of school and my partner has to take time off work which isn’t always easy. We’ve had to spend a week in Cardiff in the past when she needed physio as she can’t get that locally. We’ve even considered moving nearer to Cardiff on several occasions. It’s a real worry every day as our local doctors just can’t provide effective treatment for Aimee. We believe that by providing a multidisciplinary department, it would not only give a greater level of care to the children but also help raise awareness and knowledge of professionals and services outside of the Cardiff area. This would enable children across Wales to lead a childhood that is not dominated by arthritis.’

I think this is a most moving statement—the lives of a family with a young child that suffers from juvenile idiopathic arthritis. I will now refer to that as JIA. I think Darren succinctly summarises how a specialist paediatric centre would have a positive influence on services throughout Wales and therefore improve the lives of children with JIA.

When I was first approached by representatives of Arthritis Care, the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society and the British Society for Rheumatology, who have all been doing fantastic work in raising awareness of this issue, I was surprised that such services did not already exist. It was disheartening to find out that Wales, with its 3.1 million population, is the only home nation without such a specialised service. This is in comparison to Northern Ireland with its 1.8 million population, which has one centre, and Scotland with its 5.2 million, which has two centres. England has 12 specialist paediatric rheumatology centres. I think it’s simply unacceptable that Wales has been left behind.

There are 12,000 children in the UK that suffer with JIA, and it’s estimated that 400 of these live in the south Wales region. As you can see, Members, this is not a marginal issue. An NHS England service specification paper published in 2013 states that, in NHS England, there should be one consultant paediatric rheumatologist, two nurse specialists, one physiotherapist and one occupational therapist per 1 million of the population or every 200,000 children. Currently, an experienced adult rheumatologist at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff, who, I may add, is about to retire in the next few years, is providing the majority of specialist paediatric rheumatology services for south Wales. So, even this makeshift provision is very fragile, given the impending retirement. However, some children from south Wales are travelling to Bristol, Birmingham and even beyond. As shown in the statement from Aimee’s family, travelling long distances for children with arthritis can be painful and stressful, and can cause disruption to education and family life.

This is an issue that the Government needs, in my view, to tackle. The succession planning should be taken forward in good time to avoid a situation of no service, and recruitment for the role would be made easier if plans are put in place to develop the service into a full tertiary provision.

JIA is a severe autoimmune condition that, if not properly treated and managed, can cause significant lifelong disabilities. Children with arthritis need access to high-quality health and support services to help limit the impact of their condition and to help them reach their true potential. According to AbbVie, the pharmaceutical research and development organisation, one of the most important factors to ensure that a child with JIA doesn’t have severe arthritis and joint damage when they’re adults is for children to receive early diagnosis and treatment. The longer arthritis has been active before treatment begins, the more difficult it is to control the disease. This is just one aspect of the problem, but early diagnosis and treatment can go as far as prolonging an arthritis sufferer’s life, it is so crucial. I believe that, with a population of over two million in south Wales alone, 400,000 of these being children, there is an overwhelming case for a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre in Wales.

Point 4 of this motion asks the Assembly to note that the Welsh Health Specialised Services Committee, WHSSC, is currently undertaking a review. The review will look into the needs of the Welsh population and assess any gaps in the provision against demands, service quality and specification. I welcome this review, and I welcome the news that upcoming meetings have been scheduled between WHSSC and the relevant organisations, such as Arthritis Care. I hope that this is a signal of progress for the development of such a centre. The looming retirement of the current rheumatologist adds a time pressure to this issue, and WHSSC’s review isn’t expected to be finalised until early 2018. However, the evidence is already clear on the need for a full multidisciplinary service. The WHSSC review could usefully look at how to implement a service that would best meet the needs of the population rather than again looking at whether Wales needs one at all. We’ve already been left behind the other parts of the UK. I believe the Government should give a firm lead and indicate that it is minded to commission this service so that Wales is not the only part of the UK without reasonable local provision.

Deputy Presiding Officer, if I may conclude with this, which is a final extract taken from Aimee’s story, again in the words of her dad:

Aimee’s condition is difficult for her. She just can’t do the same things as everyone else. At the age she is, it gets highlighted a lot. It’s little things like having a lot of time off school so she never wins the attendance awards or not being able to run about with her classmates. There’s always a constant reminder that she has arthritis.’

Deputy Presiding Officer, I believe that we can do more to improve the lives of these young children, who are already struggling with a condition that makes everyday life a challenge. I commend this motion to Assembly Members. Thank you.

Diolch yn fawr iawn, Dirprwy Lywydd, am fy ngalw i gynnig y cynnig pwysig hwn, sy’n cael ei gynnig hefyd gan Caroline Jones, Rhun ap Iorwerth, Dai Lloyd a Julie Morgan. Rwyf hefyd yn ddiolchgar iawn i’r Aelodau sydd wedi cefnogi’r cynnig hwn.

Hoffwn agor y ddadl hon gyda stori am ferch ifanc o Hwlffordd. Ei henw yw Aimee, ac efallai y bydd rhai ohonoch wedi ei chyfarfod yn ystod y digwyddiad galw heibio a drefnwyd ar godi ymwybyddiaeth o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid bythefnos yn ôl yn adeilad y Pierhead. Rwy’n falch o ddweud fy mod yn meddwl bod bron i hanner Aelodau’r Cynulliad wedi mynychu’r digwyddiad hwnnw. Daw’r cyfrif personol hwn gan dad Aimee, Darren:

Cafodd Aimee ddiagnosis o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid ychydig cyn ei hail ben-blwydd, ac fe gymerodd chwe mis i ni gael diagnosis. Nid oedd y meddygon lleol yn meddwl mai arthritis ydoedd, ond nid wyf yn meddwl eu bod yn gwybod llawer am arthritis mewn plant. Roedd yn syndod i lawer o bobl. Rhaid i Aimee fynd i’r ysbyty bob mis—mae hyn yn golygu teithio i Gaerdydd, sydd ddwy awr i ffwrdd—taith gron o 230 milltir. Ar ôl iddi gael y driniaeth gallaf weld gwahaniaeth o fewn diwrnod neu ddau. Mae’r gofal meddygol yng Nghaerdydd wedi bod yn dda iawn ac rydym yn ddiolchgar iawn. Er hynny, yn lleol mae wedi bod yn anghyson ac yn wael gan fod llawer iawn o anwybodaeth ynglŷn ag arthritis mewn plant. Mae teithio i Gaerdydd yn rhoi straen enfawr arnom. Mae’n golygu colli diwrnodau o ysgol a rhaid i fy mhartner gymryd amser o’r gwaith, nad yw’n hawdd bob amser. Rydym wedi gorfod treulio wythnos yng Nghaerdydd yn y gorffennol pan oedd angen ffisiotherapi arni gan na all gael hynny’n lleol. Rydym wedi ystyried symud yn nes at Gaerdydd ar sawl achlysur. Mae’n bryder gwirioneddol bob dydd gan na all ein meddygon lleol roi triniaeth effeithiol i Aimee. Rydym yn credu y byddai darparu adran amlddisgyblaethol nid yn unig yn rhoi lefel uwch o ofal i’r plant ond hefyd yn helpu i godi ymwybyddiaeth a hybu gwybodaeth gweithwyr proffesiynol a gwasanaethau y tu allan i ardal Caerdydd. Byddai hyn yn galluogi plant ledled Cymru i gael plentyndod heb ei ddominyddu gan arthritis.

Rwy’n credu bod hwn yn ddatganiad teimladwy iawn—bywydau teulu gyda phlentyn ifanc sy’n dioddef o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid. Fe gyfeiriaf ato yn awr fel AII. Rwy’n credu bod Darren yn crynhoi’n effeithiol sut y byddai canolfan bediatrig arbenigol yn cael dylanwad cadarnhaol ar wasanaethau ledled Cymru ac felly’n gwella bywydau plant ag AII.

Pan glywais gyntaf gan gynrychiolwyr Gofal Arthritis, y Gymdeithas Arthritis Gwynegol Genedlaethol a Chymdeithas Brydeinig Rhewmatoleg, sydd oll wedi bod yn gwneud gwaith gwych yn codi ymwybyddiaeth ynglŷn â hyn, roeddwn yn synnu nad oedd gwasanaethau o’r fath yn bodoli eisoes. Roedd yn dorcalonnus i ddeall mai Cymru, gyda’i phoblogaeth o 3.1 miliwn, yw’r unig wlad ym Mhrydain heb wasanaeth arbenigol o’r fath. Mae hyn o’i gymharu â Gogledd Iwerddon gyda’i 1.8 miliwn o boblogaeth, sydd ag un ganolfan, a’r Alban gyda’i 5.2 miliwn, sydd â dwy ganolfan. Mae gan Loegr 12 canolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig arbenigol. Mae’n gwbl annerbyniol yn fy marn i fod Cymru wedi cael ei gadael ar ôl.

Mae 12,000 o blant yn y DU yn dioddef o AII, ac amcangyfrifir bod 400 o’r rhain yn byw yn ardal de Cymru. Fel y gwelwch, Aelodau, nid yw hwn yn fater ymylol. Mae papur manyleb gwasanaeth y GIG yn Lloegr a gyhoeddwyd yn 2013 yn nodi y dylai fod un ymgynghorydd rhewmatoleg pediatrig, dau arbenigwr nyrsio, un ffisiotherapydd ac un therapydd galwedigaethol yn GIG Lloegr i bob 1 filiwn o’r boblogaeth neu bob 200,000 o blant. Ar hyn o bryd, mae rhewmatolegydd oedolion profiadol yn Ysbyty Athrofaol Cymru yng Nghaerdydd, y gallwn ychwanegu ei fod ar fin ymddeol yn y blynyddoedd nesaf, yn darparu’r rhan fwyaf o wasanaethau rhewmatoleg bediatrig arbenigol ar gyfer de Cymru. Felly, mae hyd yn oed y ddarpariaeth lenwi bwlch hon yn fregus iawn, o ystyried yr ymddeoliad sydd ar y ffordd. Fodd bynnag, mae rhai plant o dde Cymru yn teithio i Fryste, Birmingham a hyd yn oed ymhellach. Fel y dangosir yn y datganiad gan deulu Aimee, gall teithio pellteroedd hir fod yn boenus ac yn llawn straen i blant ag arthritis, a gall achosi tarfu ar addysg a bywyd teuluol.

Mae hwn yn fater y mae angen i’r Llywodraeth fynd i’r afael ag ef yn fy marn i. Dylid cynllunio olyniaeth mewn da bryd i osgoi sefyllfa o fod heb wasanaeth o gwbl, a byddai recriwtio ar gyfer y swydd yn haws os rhoddir cynlluniau ar waith i ddatblygu’r gwasanaeth i fod yn ddarpariaeth drydyddol lawn.

Mae AII yn gyflwr awto-imiwn difrifol, ac os na chaiff ei drin a’i reoli’n briodol, gall achosi anableddau sylweddol gydol oes. Mae angen i blant ag arthritis gael mynediad at wasanaethau iechyd a chymorth o ansawdd uchel er mwyn helpu i gyfyngu ar effaith eu cyflwr ac i’w helpu i gyrraedd eu gwir botensial. Yn ôl AbbVie, y sefydliad ymchwil a datblygu fferyllol, un o’r ffactorau pwysicaf i sicrhau nad oes gan blentyn sydd ag AII niwed arthritis difrifol a niwed i’r cymalau pan fyddant yn oedolion yw i blant gael diagnosis a thriniaeth yn gynnar. Po hwyaf y bydd arthritis wedi bod yn weithredol cyn i’r driniaeth ddechrau, y mwyaf anodd yw hi i reoli’r clefyd. Un agwedd ar y broblem yn unig yw hon, ond gall diagnosis a thriniaeth gynnar fynd mor bell ag ymestyn hyd oes rhywun sy’n dioddef o arthritis, gan ei fod mor allweddol. Gyda phoblogaeth o dros ddwy filiwn yn ne Cymru yn unig, gyda 400,000 o’r rhain yn blant, credaf fod achos pendant dros gael canolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig arbenigol yng Nghymru.

Mae pwynt 4 y cynnig hwn yn gofyn i’r Cynulliad nodi bod Pwyllgor Gwasanaethau Iechyd Arbenigol Cymru, PGIAC, wrthi’n cynnal adolygiad. Bydd yr adolygiad yn edrych ar anghenion y boblogaeth yng Nghymru ac yn asesu unrhyw fylchau yn y ddarpariaeth yn ôl galw, ansawdd gwasanaethau a manyleb. Rwy’n croesawu’r adolygiad hwn, ac rwy’n croesawu’r newyddion fod cyfarfodydd wedi’u trefnu rhwng PGIAC a’r sefydliadau perthnasol, megis Gofal Arthritis. Rwy’n gobeithio bod hyn yn arwydd o gynnydd ar gyfer datblygu canolfan o’r fath. Mae ymddeoliad arfaethedig y rhewmatolegydd presennol yn ychwanegu pwysau amser i’r mater hwn, ac ni ddisgwylir i adolygiad PGIAC gael ei gwblhau tan ddechrau 2018. Fodd bynnag, mae’r dystiolaeth eisoes yn glir ar yr angen am wasanaeth amlddisgyblaethol llawn. Gallai adolygiad PGIAC fod o ddefnydd ar gyfer edrych ar sut i weithredu gwasanaeth a fyddai’n diwallu anghenion y boblogaeth orau yn hytrach nag edrych unwaith eto i weld a oes angen un ar Gymru. Rydym eisoes yn llusgo ar ôl y rhannau eraill o’r DU. Rwy’n credu y dylai’r Llywodraeth roi arweiniad cadarn a nodi ei bod yn bwriadu comisiynu’r gwasanaeth hwn fel na fydd Cymru yn unig ran o’r DU heb ddarpariaeth leol resymol.

Dirprwy Lywydd, os caf orffen gyda hyn, sef dyfyniad olaf o stori Aimee, unwaith eto yng ngeiriau ei thad:

Mae cyflwr Aimee yn anodd iddi. Nid yw’n gallu gwneud yr un pethau â phawb arall. Yn ei hoed hi, tynnir sylw at hyn yn aml. Pethau bach, fel bod yn absennol o’r ysgol yn aml, fel nad yw hi byth yn ennill gwobrau presenoldeb neu’r ffaith ei bod hi’n methu rhedeg o gwmpas gyda’i chyd-ddisgyblion. Mae yna rywbeth sy’n atgoffa’n gyson fod ganddi arthritis.

Dirprwy Lywydd, rwy’n credu y gallwn wneud mwy i wella bywydau’r plant ifanc hyn, sydd eisoes yn brwydro yn erbyn cyflwr sy’n gwneud bywyd bob dydd yn her. Rwy’n cymeradwyo’r cynnig hwn i Aelodau’r Cynulliad. Diolch.

I congratulate David Melding on getting this debate today, and I’m pleased to support him. As we know from the debate, arthritis isn’t just something that older people get, because I think that is often what people think. I became aware of childhood arthritis, which affects 400 children in south Wales, after being contacted by a constituent, Dawn Nyhan, and I met her and her daughter Harriet, who is now 19. She was first diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis when she was just two years old, similar to David’s constituent. As well as the more well-known effects of childhood arthritis, such as joint damage and mobility problems, which have already been mentioned today, perhaps less well-known is that 10 to 20 per cent of children develop an inflammatory eye condition that can cause blindness if not treated. So, this illness is a very severe condition if it is left untreated.

About 60 to 70 per cent of children grow out of rheumatoid arthritis, in that they don’t have ongoing disease, but they may still have to cope with ongoing problems as a result of joint damage they suffered when they were younger, and between 30 and 56 per cent of people with childhood arthritis will experience severe limitations in dexterity and mobility in adulthood.

Sadly, Harriet’s problems are ongoing, although she is determined not to let it stop her achieving. Harriet is now training to be a nurse, but she has such damage to her joints that mobility is a problem and she still has days when she can’t walk down the stairs and she’s in excruciating pain, and she never knows when her next procedure or surgery will be required.

Harriet’s mother, Dawn, said that they first noticed pain and problems moving when she was two years old. She had been an early walker but was reduced to shuffling to get around and was obviously in great pain. At first, the parents were told it was growing pains and they were passed, they felt, from pillar to post without a diagnosis. David mentioned about the importance of early diagnosis in his speech. I think that is really one of the points that we need to address today—there’s not enough knowledge among GPs of junior arthritis, and the family also found that there was no knowledge of it in A&E when they took Harriet there.

Eventually, after about five months, they had a diagnosis and, since then, they say they have had fantastic care—the problem was reaching that actual point. And, of course, it’s also important to note, as we’ve already heard, that they have the excellent care from their consultant, Jeremy Camilleri, who is also my constituent. He always does his utmost to help, but he is still an adult rheumatologist who can only dedicate a quarter of his working time to children. This motion highlights the need for a specialist, dedicated child rheumatology specialist for the population of south Wales, really, which has a population that does justify that.

In Harriet’s case, lots of physiotherapy and support, and the use of the hydro pool at UHW, literally did help to get her back on her feet. But there have been continued flare-ups of pain and swelling in Harriet’s knees and ankles throughout her school career. She’s had to spend a huge amount of her time in hospital, either to receive treatment or to have fluid drained from her joints.

She also lost a lot of school time, and I think this loss of school time is a very important issue. Her parents found it difficult to get support for learning at home, although the school, Llanishen High School, was absolutely very supportive about sending work home. But she wasn’t able to get a tutor at home, so they had to pay for private tutors to help Harriet get 10 GCSEs—three A* and seven As—despite having a very low attendance record at school and having surgery on her joints during both years of GCSE exams.

So, I really do feel that, with all the problems she’s encountered, and with such support from her parents, she has really achieved very well. She was a keen sportswoman and she captained the hockey team until she was 16, when she was told her playing days were over because of the amount of bone damage she had suffered on her knees because of the arthritis.

So, we know that there are hundreds of children with this extremely painful condition and if it’s not treated in childhood, bone damage and damaged joints are the result. While children do need the treatment in hospital, we’ve already heard about the difficulty of the long car journeys to get that treatment, and those journeys are very painful. So, I hope that the Cabinet Secretary will think of a model that can address all the issues that have been raised today and can find some way of addressing this very debilitating, very important illness, which can be prevented and can be addressed if it is diagnosed early enough. Thank you.

Rwy’n llongyfarch David Melding ar gael y ddadl hon heddiw, ac rwy’n falch o’i gefnogi. Fel y gwyddom o’r drafodaeth, nid rhywbeth y mae pobl hŷn yn unig yn ei gael yw arthritis, oherwydd credaf mai dyna fydd pobl yn aml yn ei feddwl. Deuthum yn ymwybodol o arthritis plentyndod, sy’n effeithio ar 400 o blant yn ne Cymru, ar ôl i un o fy etholwyr, Dawn Nyhan, ddod i gysylltiad â mi a chyfarfûm â hi a’i merch Harriet, sydd bellach yn 19. Cafodd ei diagnosis cyntaf o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid pan oedd yn ddim ond dwy oed, yn debyg i etholwr David. Yn ogystal ag effeithiau mwy cyfarwydd arthritis plentyndod, megis niwed i’r cymalau a phroblemau symudedd, sydd eisoes wedi cael eu crybwyll heddiw, efallai ei bod yn llai hysbys fod 10 i 20 y cant o blant yn datblygu cyflwr llygad llidiol a all achosi dallineb os na chaiff ei drin. Felly, mae’r salwch hwn yn gyflwr difrifol iawn os caiff ei adael heb ei drin.

Mae tua 60 i 70 y cant o blant yn tyfu allan o arthritis gwynegol, yn yr ystyr nad oes ganddynt glefyd parhaus, ond mae’n bosibl y bydd yn rhaid iddynt barhau i ymdopi â phroblemau o ganlyniad i niwed i’r cymalau a ddioddefasant pan oeddent yn iau, a bydd rhwng 30 a 56 y cant o bobl ag arthritis plentyndod yn dioddef cyfyngiadau difrifol o ran deheurwydd a symudedd pan fyddant yn oedolion.

Yn anffodus, mae problemau Harriet yn barhaus, er ei bod yn benderfynol o beidio â gadael iddo ei hatal rhag cyflawni. Mae Harriet bellach yn hyfforddi i fod yn nyrs, ond mae hi wedi cael cymaint o niwed i’r cymalau fel bod symudedd yn broblem ac mae hi’n dal i gael dyddiau pan na all gerdded i lawr y grisiau ac mae mewn poen dirdynnol, ac nid yw byth yn gwybod pryd y bydd angen triniaeth neu lawdriniaeth arni nesaf.

Dywedodd mam Harriet, Dawn, eu bod wedi sylwi ar boen a phroblemau gyda symud yn gyntaf pan oedd hi’n ddwy flwydd oed. Roedd hi wedi dechrau cerdded yn gynnar ond dechreuodd lusgo’i thraed ac roedd hi’n amlwg mewn poen mawr. Ar y dechrau, dywedwyd wrth y rhieni mai poenau tyfiant oeddent a theimlent eu bod wedi cael eu trosglwyddo o un man i’r llall heb ddiagnosis. Soniodd David am bwysigrwydd diagnosis cynnar yn ei araith. Credaf o ddifrif mai dyna un o’r pwyntiau y mae angen i ni fynd i’r afael â hwy heddiw. Nid oes digon o wybodaeth ymhlith meddygon teulu ynglŷn ag arthritis ieuenctid, a gwelodd y teulu hefyd nad oedd unrhyw wybodaeth am y cyflwr yn yr adran ddamweiniau ac achosion brys pan fyddent yn mynd â Harriet yno.

Yn y pen draw, ar ôl tua phum mis, cawsant ddiagnosis ac ers hynny, maent yn dweud eu bod wedi cael gofal gwych—y broblem oedd cyrraedd y pwynt hwnnw. Ac wrth gwrs, mae hefyd yn bwysig nodi, fel y clywsom eisoes, eu bod yn cael gofal ardderchog gan eu meddyg ymgynghorol, Jeremy Camilleri, sydd hefyd yn un o fy etholwyr. Mae bob amser yn gwneud ei orau glas i helpu, ond rhiwmatolegydd oedolion ydyw er hynny, ac ni all neilltuo mwy na chwarter ei amser ar gyfer gweithio gyda phlant. Mae’r cynnig hwn yn tynnu sylw at yr angen am arbenigwr rhewmatoleg penodedig ar gyfer plant i dde Cymru, sydd â phoblogaeth ddigon mawr i gyfiawnhau hynny.

Yn achos Harriet, fe wnaeth llawer o ffisiotherapi a chefnogaeth a’r defnydd o’r pwll hydro yn Ysbyty Athrofaol Cymru helpu i’w chael yn ôl ar ei thraed yn llythrennol. Ond mae Harriet wedi bod yn parhau i gael pyliau o boen a chwyddo yn ei phengliniau a’i fferau drwy gydol ei gyrfa ysgol. Mae hi wedi gorfod treulio llawer iawn o’i hamser yn yr ysbyty, naill ai i gael triniaeth neu i gael hylif wedi’i ddraenio o’i chymalau.

Mae hi hefyd yn colli llawer o amser ysgol, ac rwy’n credu bod colli ysgol fel hyn yn fater pwysig iawn. Cafodd ei rhieni drafferth i gael cymorth ar gyfer dysgu yn y cartref, er bod yr ysgol, Ysgol Uwchradd Llanisien, yn gwbl gefnogol ynglŷn ag anfon gwaith adref. Ond ni allodd gael tiwtor yn y cartref, felly roedd yn rhaid iddynt dalu am diwtoriaid preifat i helpu Harriet i gael 10 TGAU—tair A* a saith A—er bod ei chofnod presenoldeb yn yr ysgol yn isel iawn ac er iddi gael llawdriniaeth ar ei chymalau yn ystod y ddwy flynedd roedd ganddi arholiadau TGAU.

Felly, rwy’n teimlo’n gryf, gyda’r holl broblemau mae hi wedi’u hwynebu, a chyda chymaint o gefnogaeth gan ei rhieni, ei bod hi wedi cyflawni’n dda iawn. Roedd hi’n frwd ynglŷn â chwaraeon a bu’n gapten y tîm hoci nes ei bod yn 16 oed, pan ddywedwyd wrthi fod ei dyddiau chwarae drosodd oherwydd ei bod wedi dioddef cymaint o niwed i esgyrn ei phengliniau oherwydd yr arthritis.

Felly, gwyddom fod cannoedd o blant yn dioddef o’r cyflwr eithriadol o boenus hwn ac os na chaiff ei drin yn ystod eu plentyndod, y canlyniad fydd niwed i’r esgyrn a’r cymalau. Er bod plant angen y driniaeth yn yr ysbyty, rydym eisoes wedi clywed am anhawster teithiau hir yn y car i gael y driniaeth honno, ac mae’r teithiau hynny’n boenus iawn. Felly, rwy’n gobeithio y bydd Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet yn meddwl am fodel a all fynd i’r afael â’r holl broblemau a nodwyd heddiw ac y gall ddod o hyd i ffordd o fynd i’r afael â’r salwch gwanychol pwysig hwn, y gellir ei atal ac y gellir mynd i’r afael ag ef os gwneir diagnosis yn ddigon cynnar. Diolch.

I’m very delighted to be able to speak in today’s debate. It must be very hard, Cabinet Secretary, because I know that money is not infinite, but, as David Melding says, this is not a marginal issue, and these young people have every right to access the quality of treatment that we would expect throughout the entire NHS. The long and the short of it is that Wales should have a multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology service.

I also met Aimee at the event that was held last week, and had a moment of embarrassment, which I’m prepared to completely admit to. She was standing next door to someone else who was on crutches, so I kind of beelined for the person on crutches, because there was this other bright, sparky, bouncy little kid—you know, bing, bing, bing—and I thought, ‘Oh, it must be this person’, and they went, ‘No, this is Aimee’, and there she was. We had a great chat about shopping, about clothes, about getting into Cardiff town centre—really, really excited—and then her dad said to me, ‘But tomorrow she’ll probably be in a wheelchair.’ That really brought it home to me, and I thought, ‘Oh, my gosh’. What a thing to cope with when you’re only—I think she’s seven or eight. One minute you can whizz around and do everything, and the next minute that’s it, you’re completely constrained by two wheels.

I also met a young man who was a bit older and, I have to say, probably a little bit more chippy, because teenage hormones were raging around his body, and he was finding it really tough. He was in a wheelchair and he was clutching a rugby ball and talking about various things, but he said that his life is really tough and he can’t join in with this friends, he can’t go out on trips and all the rest of it, and I just thought, ‘Wow, that really brings it home. This is a life-experience limiting illness/condition/disease.’ And that’s the issue, because a lot of these young kids, if they get support—and one of the big supports that they need and they cannot get and which isn’t available is physiotherapy and occupational therapy and psychotherapy that’s specifically targets the kinds of experiences that they are going through.

I had a long chat as well with Aimee’s father, and he said that he could cope, albeit unwillingly, with having to come up to Cardiff and deal with the adult rheumatologist and so on, but what he really wanted to be able to do was to have near their home in Haverfordwest, trained physiotherapists who could help someone like Aimee to cope with what she’s doing, to make her as strong as possible, to give her the best chance of going through this awful condition, and hopefully emerging out of it the other side as a young adult being the absolute best that she can possibly be. He’s asked Withybush hospital and Glangwili and there’s a real reluctance because they don’t have the staff, they don’t have the training, they don’t have the knowledge, they don’t have the skills. I met with the chief executive, and it was one of the things that we raised, because Aimee, the young man that I met and another young man that I met in my surgery—they all have that absolute right to have those kind of services. If I break my arm and I want physio, I expect to be able to deal with someone who knows how to help me get that strength back.

So, much of this debate is centred on having a centre of excellence, which we absolutely need in Wales, based somewhere sensible where people can get to it, with a targeted paediatric specialist in charge. But it doesn’t stop there. I think that’s the heart of the spider. The legs that go out all through Wales must have all these support services. We must have the occupational therapists, we must have the physiotherapists, and we must have the psychological therapists, because the young man who came to see me in my constituency office was just very unhappy, very down about what was happening to him, very down about his experience, and he couldn’t get the mental health support that he needed. So, it’s a whole range—these people are not just a person with a problem; it’s a complex issue. And I think it must be very hard to be suffering from something that can be so different on a day-to-day basis, and it must really upset the rhythms of your day. So, I would like to plead, Cabinet Secretary, for you to have a look at this whole area, to look at building a centre of excellence. We have the children’s hospital. This could be an absolutely great base to start from and actually put somebody into there who can look after south Wales, and then make plans for how we look after north Wales as well, of course, because children up there are having to travel across borders and so on. So, we need to make sure that we can provide that to mitigate what is a deeply, deeply unpleasant condition.

Final comment: we’ve talked a lot about public health, we talk a lot about the time bomb of the future, we talk a lot about empowering the patient, empowering the carer, hearing their voice and letting people make informed choices. Without having the staff in place and those people being trained to help these people, they can’t do that, they can’t have a voice, and they can’t make informed choices, and that’s what, Cabinet Secretary, we’re asking you to consider putting in place. Thank you.

Rwy’n falch iawn o gael siarad yn y ddadl heddiw. Rhaid ei bod yn anodd iawn, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, gan fy mod yn gwybod nad yw arian yn ddiderfyn, ond fel y dywed David Melding, nid yw hwn yn fater ymylol, ac mae gan y bobl ifanc hyn bob hawl i gael mynediad at driniaeth o’r ansawdd y byddem yn ei ddisgwyl drwy’r GIG yn gyfan. Swm a sylwedd y peth yw y dylai Cymru gael gwasanaeth rhewmatoleg pediatrig amlddisgyblaethol.

Fe wnes innau hefyd gyfarfod ag Aimee yn y digwyddiad a gynhaliwyd yr wythnos diwethaf, ac rwy’n gwbl barod i gyfaddef fy mod wedi cael eiliad o embaras. Roedd hi’n sefyll wrth ymyl rhywun arall a oedd ar ffyn baglau, felly anelais yn syth am y person ar ffyn baglau, gan fod yna blentyn bach bywiog, hwyliog arall yn llawn bywyd—wyddoch chi, bing, bing, bing—ac fe feddyliais, ‘O, rhaid mai dyma hi’, a dyma hwy’n dweud, ‘Na, hon yw Aimee’, a dyna ble roedd hi. Cawsom sgwrs wych am siopa, am ddillad, am fynd i ganol Caerdydd—yn llawn cyffro—ac yna dywedodd ei thad wrthyf, ‘Ond yfory mae hi’n debygol o fod mewn cadair olwyn.’ Gwnaeth hynny argraff fawr arnaf, a meddyliais ‘O, diar annwyl’. Am beth ofnadwy i ymdopi ag ef pan ydych ond yn—rwy’n meddwl ei bod hi’n saith neu’n wyth oed. Un funud gallwch wibio o gwmpas a gwneud popeth, a’r funud nesaf dyna ni, rydych wedi’ch cyfyngu’n llwyr gan ddwy olwyn.

Hefyd, cyfarfûm â dyn ifanc a oedd ychydig yn hŷn ac mae’n rhaid i mi ddweud, roedd ychydig yn fwy anniddig yn ôl pob tebyg am fod hormonau’r arddegau yn tanio o gwmpas ei gorff ac roedd yn ei chael hi’n anodd iawn. Roedd mewn cadair olwyn ac yn gafael mewn pêl rygbi ac yn siarad am wahanol bethau, ond dywedodd fod ei fywyd yn anodd iawn ac ni all ymuno i wneud pethau gyda’i ffrindiau, ni all fynd ar dripiau a’r gweddill i gyd, ac fe feddyliais, ‘Wow, mae hynny’n dod â’r peth yn fyw. Mae hwn yn salwch, cyflwr, afiechyd sy’n cyfyngu ar brofiadau bywyd.’ A dyna’r broblem, oherwydd mae llawer o’r plant ifanc hyn, os ydynt yn cael cymorth—ac un o’r pethau mawr sydd eu hangen arnynt i’w cynorthwyo ac na allant ei gael ac nad yw ar gael yw ffisiotherapi a therapi galwedigaethol a seicotherapi sy’n targedu’n benodol y mathau o brofiadau y maent yn byw drwyddynt.

Cefais sgwrs hir hefyd â thad Aimee, a dywedodd ei fod yn gallu ymdopi, er yn anfoddog, â gorfod dod i Gaerdydd a siarad â’r rhewmatolegydd oedolion ac yn y blaen, ond roedd yn awyddus iawn i gael ffisiotherapyddion wedi’u hyfforddi ger eu cartref yn Hwlffordd a allai helpu rhywun fel Aimee i ymdopi â’r hyn y mae hi’n ei wneud, i’w gwneud mor gryf ag y bo modd, i roi’r cyfle gorau iddi fynd drwy’r cyflwr ofnadwy hwn, a dod allan yn y pen arall gobeithio fel yr oedolyn ifanc gorau y gall hi fod. Mae wedi gofyn i Ysbyty Llwynhelyg a Glangwili ac mae yna amharodrwydd go iawn oherwydd nad oes ganddynt y staff, nid oes ganddynt yr hyfforddiant, nid oes ganddynt y wybodaeth, nid oes ganddynt y sgiliau. Cyfarfûm â’r prif weithredwr, ac roedd yn un o’r pethau a godwyd gennym, oherwydd bod gan Aimee, y dyn ifanc y cyfarfûm ag ef a dyn ifanc arall y cyfarfûm ag ef yn fy nghymhorthfa—mae gan bob un ohonynt hawl absoliwt i gael y mathau hynny o wasanaethau. Os wyf yn torri fy mraich ac eisiau ffisiotherapi, rwy’n disgwyl gallu siarad â rhywun sy’n gwybod sut i fy helpu i gael y cryfder hwnnw yn ôl.

Felly, mae llawer o’r ddadl hon yn canolbwyntio ar gael canolfan ragoriaeth y mae ei gwir angen arnom yng Nghymru, wedi’i lleoli yn rhywle synhwyrol lle y gall pobl ei chyrraedd, gydag arbenigwr pediatrig targededig yn ei rheoli. Ond nid yw’n gorffen yn y fan honno. Dyna galon y corryn rwy’n credu. Mae’n rhaid i bob un o’r coesau sy’n mynd allan dros Gymru gael yr holl wasanaethau cymorth hyn. Mae’n rhaid i ni gael y therapyddion galwedigaethol, mae’n rhaid i ni gael y ffisiotherapyddion, ac mae’n rhaid i ni gael y therapyddion seicolegol oherwydd roedd y dyn ifanc a ddaeth i fy ngweld yn fy swyddfa etholaeth yn anhapus iawn, yn isel iawn ynglŷn â’r hyn oedd yn digwydd iddo, yn isel iawn ynglŷn â’i brofiad, ac ni allai gael y cymorth iechyd meddwl roedd ei angen. Felly, mae’n ystod gyfan—nid unigolyn â phroblem yw’r bobl hyn; mae’n fater cymhleth. Ac rwy’n meddwl o reidrwydd fod dioddef o rywbeth sy’n gallu bod mor wahanol o ddydd i ddydd yn anodd iawn, ac mae’n rhaid ei fod yn tarfu ar rythmau eich diwrnod. Felly, hoffwn ymbil arnoch, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, i edrych ar yr holl faes hwn, i ystyried adeiladu canolfan ragoriaeth. Mae gennym ysbyty plant. Gallai hyn fod yn sylfaen hollol wych i ddechrau ohono a rhoi rhywun yno sy’n gallu edrych ar ôl de Cymru ac yna gwneud cynlluniau ar gyfer sut i ofalu am ogledd Cymru yn ogystal, wrth gwrs, oherwydd, mae plant i fyny yno yn gorfod teithio ar draws ffiniau ac yn y blaen. Felly mae angen inni wneud yn siŵr y gallwn ddarparu hynny er mwyn lliniaru cyflwr sy’n annymunol tu hwnt.

Sylw Terfynol: rydym wedi siarad llawer am iechyd y cyhoedd, rydym yn siarad llawer am y bom amser yn y dyfodol, rydym yn sôn llawer am rymuso’r claf, grymuso’r gofalwr, clywed eu llais a gadael i bobl wneud dewisiadau gwybodus. Heb gael y staff yn eu lle a hyfforddi’r bobl hynny i helpu’r bobl hyn, ni allant wneud hynny, ni allant gael llais, ac ni allant wneud dewisiadau gwybodus, a dyna beth, Ysgrifennydd y Cabinet, y gofynnwn i chi ystyried ei sefydlu. Diolch.

Mi wnaf innau ddechrau drwy sôn am brofiad person ifanc, Kelly O’Keefe o Dalsarnau yng Ngwynedd, sydd yn ei hugeiniau erbyn hyn ond yn dioddef o arthritis o oed ifanc iawn. Yn cael ei thriniaeth yn ysbyty Alder Hey yn Lerpwl—ysbyty rhagorol, ond nid dyna’r pwynt yn fan hyn. Mi oedd ei rhieni hi’n gorfod cymryd diwrnod off o’r gwaith i fynd â hi i Lerpwl, gydag apwyntiadau’n gynnar yn y bore—weithiau am 9 o’r gloch y bore. Nid oedd hi’n teithio’n dda iawn oherwydd yr arthritis. Mi oedd hi’n cymryd dyddiau iddi ddod dros y teithio yn aml iawn. Ac mi oedd y profiad yn un sydd wedi aros efo hi hyd heddiw.

Ar y rhagdybiaeth ein bod ni yn ystyried bod teithio am bellteroedd hir am driniaeth yn rhywbeth y mae’r NHS yn ei ddefnyddio fel rhywbeth ‘last resort’—mae’n bosib ei bod hi’n annheg i wneud y rhagdybiaeth honno o ystyried faint o wasanaethau sydd wedi cael eu hallanoli i Loegr yn y blynyddoedd diwethaf—o gymryd y rhagdybiaeth yna, mae angen inni ofyn i ni ein hunain: a ydy hi’n bosib a sut mae hi’n bosib i gael y ddarpariaeth arbenigol yma yng Nghymru. Beth sydd angen ar gyfer gwasanaeth arbenigol? Wel, niferoedd cleifion, i ddechrau efo hi, ac rydym ni’n gallu gweld nad oes yna ddim problem efo cyfiawnhau hynny yn ne Cymru, yn sicr. Efallai ei bod hi ychydig bach yn fwy problematig yn y gogledd, neu, o leiaf os ydym ni’n eithrio defnyddwyr posib o ardaloedd Caer neu Amwythig, er enghraifft—sef beth rydym ni fel arfer yn ei wneud, mae’n debyg—mi ddylem ni fod yn datblygu gwasanaethau a all ddarparu i rai dros y ffin hefyd, os mai dyna sydd ei angen ar gyfer creu y ‘critical mass’.

Mae yna hefyd rywbeth yn od yn y gwahaniaeth rhwng y ffigurau poblogaeth yng Nghymru a’r niferoedd sydd ar hyn o bryd yn cael eu hadnabod fel cleifion yn y system. Cymru ydy’r unig wlad yn y Deyrnas Unedig heb ganolfan rhewmatoleg bediatrig arbenigol. Mae gan Ogledd Iwerddon boblogaeth o 1.8 miliwn, o’i gymharu â 3.1 miliwn yng Nghymru, ac eto Cymru sydd heb wasanaeth amlddisgyblaethol, fel rydym ni’n gofyn amdano fo heddi. Mae gan yr Alban, efo poblogaeth o 5.2 miliwn, ddau wasanaeth o’r fath. Ond pan fydd hi’n dod at niferoedd y cleifion, dim ond 202 o blant oedd ar y llyfrau, fel petai, yn cael eu trin yng Nghaerdydd, yn ôl ffigurau 2014. Rŵan, os ydym ni’n ystyried, a’n bod ni’n credu, fod yna ryw 600 o blant â’r cyflwr yma yng Nghymru, mae’r mudiadau sydd yn cefnogi’r cynnig yma heddiw wedi datgan pryder am y ffigurau yma—y ffigwr o 202—achos mi allai fo olygu un ai nad yw plant yn cael diagnosis neu nad yw eu hanghenion nhw ar ôl cael diagnosis yn cael eu diwallu yn y ffordd y dylen nhw drwy gael gwasanaeth amlddisgyblaethol iawn.

Rydym ni wedi gweld o’r blaen yn aml iawn, pan fydd hi’n dod i ddarpariaeth arbenigol, fod y galw posib amdano fo’n aml yn cael ei danamcangyfrif gan swyddogion iechyd, sy’n barod iawn, mae’n ymddangos i mi, i weld Lloegr fel y darparwr arbenigol ‘default’ felly. Mae’r uned ‘perinatal’ mam a baban rydym ni wedi sôn amdani yn ddiweddar yn achos arall lle oedd y galw a’r angen yn cael eu tanamgangyfrif pan yn asesu a ddylai uned gael ei chau. Rydym ni hefyd yn gwybod bod diffyg data yn broblem drwy’r NHS. Nid yw llawer o’r data rydym ni eu hangen ar gael neu’n cael eu rhannu. Mae sefydliadau fel petasent yn cynllunio, yn aml iawn, beth allen nhw ei gau neu ei symud i rywle arall yn hytrach na beth allen nhw ei greu.

Nid ydy o’n gyfrinach fod y cynnig yma wedi cael ei gyflwyno ac wedi cael ei ysbrydoli oherwydd gwaith eiriolaeth sawl mudiad sy’n cynrychioli cleifion sydd angen gwell gwasanaethau. Rwy’n gobeithio y byddwn ni’n cael ymateb positif gan y Llywodraeth yma o ganlyniad i hynny. Ond rwyf am ofyn y cwestiwn yma: beth am y clefydau nad oes ganddyn nhw’r un eirioli effeithiol ar ran cleifion? Allwn ni ddim bodloni ar ddarpariaeth fratiog mewn unrhyw gyd-destun. Mae yna fater ehangach i ni fan hyn hefyd, sef bod yna dybiaethau am Gymru gan reolwyr yr NHS, mae’n ymddangos i mi, sy’n golygu nad ydyn nhw’n ei weld o fel yr opsiwn ‘default’ i geisio darparu’r triniaethau arbenigol yma, neu ystyried denu cleifion o Loegr pan fyddai hynny’n ofynnol i greu ‘critical mass’. Ac, o ganlyniad, nid hwn, rwy’n meddwl, a fydd yr olaf o’r math yma o ddadl.

Mae profiad Kelly O’Keefe, rwy’n meddwl, yn adrodd cyfrolau. Mae’n sôn hefyd, oherwydd y diffyg gwasanaeth yng ngogledd Cymru, am y diffyg gwasanaethau cefnogol a oedd yn deillio o hynny. Oherwydd nad oedd yna ddim gwasanaeth, nid oedd yna ychwaith ddim grwpiau cefnogol ar gael yng ngogledd Cymru, a hynny hefyd yn gwneud y profiad, iddi hi a’i theulu, yn anos fyth. Mae’n amlwg i fi fod plant Cymru yn haeddu gwell, ac rydw i’n falch iawn o gael cefnogi’r cynnig yma heddiw.

I’ll begin by talking about the experience of a young person, Kelly O’Keefe from Talsarnau in Gwynedd, who is in her 20s by now but who has been suffering from arthritis from a very early age, receiving treatment in Alder Hey Hospital in Liverpool—an excellent hospital, but that’s not the point in this context. Her parents had to take a day off work to take her to Liverpool, with appointments very early in the morning—sometimes at 9 o’clock in the morning—and she didn’t travel very well because of the arthritis. It would take days to get over the journey, very often. And the experience is one that has remained with her to this day.

On the assumption that we are considering that travelling over long distances for treatment is something that the NHS uses as a last resort—perhaps it’s unfair to make that assumption considering how many services have been outsourced to England in the past few years. But making that assumption, we do have to ask ourselves whether it’s possible, and how it would be possible, to have that specialist provision in Wales. What do we need for specialist services? Well, we need the patient numbers to begin with, and we can see that there is no problem with justifying that in south Wales, certainly. It is perhaps a little bit more problematic in north Wales, or at least if we accept potential users from areas in Chester or Shrewsbury, for example, which is what we would usually do. We should be developing services that can provide for those over the border as well, if that’s what’s needed to create that critical mass.

There is also something slightly strange about the difference between the population figures in Wales and the numbers at present identified as patients in the system. Wales is the only nation in the United Kingdom without a specialist paediatric rheumatology centre. Northern Ireland has a population of 1.8 million, compared to 3.1 million in Wales, and yet it’s Wales that doesn’t have a multidisciplinary service, as we’re asking for today. Scotland, with a population of 5.2 million, has two services of this kind. But when it comes to patient numbers, only 202 children were on the books, as it were, being treated in Cardiff, according to the 2014 figures. Now, if we consider that we believe that there are around 600 children with this condition in Wales, then the groups that represent and support this motion today expressed concern about this figure of 202, because it could mean either that children aren’t receiving a diagnosis or that their needs post-diagnosis aren’t being met in the way that they should be through having a multidisciplinary service.

We’ve seen before that, very often, when it comes to specialist provision, demand for it is very often underestimated by health officials who are, it appears to me, very willing to see England as the specialist provider—the default provider. The perinatal unit for mothers and babies that we’ve heard about is another example of the demand and the need being underestimated when assessing whether a unit should be closed or not. We also note that a lack of data is a problem throughout the NHS. Much of the data that we need aren’t available or aren’t being shared, and it’s as if institutions are planning for what they can close or move somewhere else, rather than for what they can create.

It’s no secret that this motion has been put forward and has been inspired because of the advocacy work done by several groups representing patients who require better services. We hope that we will receive a positive response from this Government as a result of that. But I do want to ask this question: what about those conditions that don’t have the same kind of efficient and effective advocacy on behalf of patients? We can’t be content with that piecemeal provision for those conditions. There is a wider matter here with regard to assumptions about Wales by NHS managers, it appears to me, which means that they don’t see it as the default option to try to provide specialist services here, or to attract patients from England when that would be required to create a critical mass. As a result, this won’t be the last that we see of this kind of debate.

Kelly O’Keefe’s experience speaks volumes, I believe. It speaks also, because of the lack of services in north Wales, about the lack of support services and supporting services stemming from that. Because there wasn’t a service, there were no support groups available in north Wales, and that also makes the experience, for her and her family, even harder. It’s clear to me that the children of Wales deserve better, and I’m very pleased to be able to support this motion today.

I’m pleased to be co-sponsoring this motion before us today and I thank David Melding for bringing about this debate, which is very important. It is unacceptable that Wales is the only home nation without a specialist paediatric rheumatology service or a dedicated multidisciplinary team. As a result, children in Wales who suffer from juvenile idiopathic arthritis, juvenile onset systemic lupus erythematosus, vasculitis, juvenile idiopathic osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, and around 200 other conditions, are left without specialist care. Thousands of children from across south Wales are forced to rely on a substandard service provided part time by an adult rheumatology specialist without the backup of nurse specialists, physios, and occupational therapists, and some children have to travel to Bristol or Birmingham for treatment.

Last week, at an event to highlight this issue, I met an incredibly brave young lady who suffers from juvenile idiopathic arthritis. Aimee is eight years old, and brought home to me the real challenges she and her family face as a result of her condition and the fact that, when the current rheumatologist retires, in just a few years, she will have no specialist care. Aimee has spent the majority of her young life in pain, with stiff and swollen joints. Her arthritis has limited her childhood as she is often unable to do the things that many young people take for granted. When this happens, Aimee uses a wheelchair. Her father Darren explains she is sometimes teased or even bullied in school when she uses her chair. Her condition has had an impact on her education as she has to miss school on occasions, and it has affected the rest of the family. Without proper treatment, there is a risk she could develop lifelong disabilities, so this disease is not only robbing Aimee of her childhood but could also impact or limit her adulthood. Despite all of this, she continues to brighten the world with her smile.

Aimee, unfortunately, is not alone. There are hundreds of children in south Wales living with this terrible autoimmune condition, for which there is no cure. These young people deserve a dedicated multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology service. Such a service is vital in achieving remission of arthritis, maintaining the disease’s remission, preserving normal development, and minimising the risk of lifelong disability. NHS England states that there should be one consultant paediatric rheumatologist, two nurse specialists, one physiotherapist, and one occupational therapist for every 1 million people. We have around 2 million people living in south Wales yet we have a quarter whole-time equivalent adult rheumatologist without a formal clinical network or multidisciplinary team. This is unacceptable. We are letting down Aimee and thousands of children like her.

I urge my fellow Assembly Members to join us in calling for the Welsh Government to deliver a full multidisciplinary paediatric rheumatology service in south Wales and to improve the provision of services in north Wales. We owe it to Aimee, we owe it to the thousands of children suffering from rheumatic conditions, and we owe it to those children yet to receive a diagnosis. Please support this motion. Thank you. Diolch yn fawr.

Rwy’n falch o gael cyd-noddi’r cynnig hwn sydd ger ein bron heddiw a diolch i David Melding am gyflwyno’r ddadl hon, sy’n un bwysig iawn. Mae’n annerbyniol mai Cymru yw’r unig wlad ym Mhrydain heb wasanaeth rhewmatoleg pediatrig arbenigol neu dîm amlddisgyblaethol penodedig. O ganlyniad, mae plant yng Nghymru sy’n dioddef o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid, erythematosws lwpws systemig sy’n dechrau yn ystod ieuenctid, fasgwlitis, osteoporosis idiopathig ieuenctid, ffibromyalgia, a thua 200 o gyflyrau eraill, yn cael eu gadael heb ofal arbenigol. Mae miloedd o blant o bob cwr o dde Cymru yn cael eu gorfodi i ddibynnu ar wasanaeth eilradd a ddarperir yn rhan-amser gan arbenigwr rhewmatoleg oedolion heb gefnogaeth arbenigwyr nyrsio, ffisiotherapyddion, a therapyddion galwedigaethol, ac mae’n rhaid i rai plant deithio i Fryste neu Birmingham am driniaeth.

Yr wythnos diwethaf, mewn digwyddiad i dynnu sylw at y mater hwn, cyfarfûm â merch ifanc anhygoel o ddewr sy’n dioddef o arthritis idiopathig ieuenctid. Mae Aimee yn wyth mlwydd oed, a dangosodd i mi’r heriau gwirioneddol y mae hi a’i theulu yn eu hwynebu o ganlyniad i’w chyflwr a’r ffaith na fydd gofal arbenigol ar gael iddi pan fydd y rhewmatolegydd presennol yn ymddeol mewn ychydig flynyddoedd. Mae Aimee wedi treulio’r rhan fwyaf o’i bywyd ifanc mewn poen, gyda chymalau stiff ac wedi chwyddo. Mae ei arthritis wedi cyfyngu ar ei phlentyndod gan ei bod yn aml yn methu gwneud y pethau y mae llawer o bobl ifanc yn eu cymryd yn ganiataol. Pan fydd hyn yn digwydd, mae Aimee’n defnyddio cadair olwyn. Eglurodd ei thad, Darren, ei bod weithiau’n cael ei phryfocio neu hyd yn oed ei bwlio yn yr ysgol pan fydd hi’n defnyddio ei chadair. Mae ei chyflwr wedi effeithio ar ei haddysg gan ei bod wedi gorfod colli ysgol ar adegau, ac mae wedi effeithio ar weddill y teulu. Heb driniaeth gywir, mae risg y gallai ddatblygu anableddau gydol oes, felly mae’r clefyd hwn yn amddifadu Aimee o’i phlentyndod, ond gallai hefyd effeithio neu gyfyngu ar ei bywyd fel oedolyn. Er gwaethaf hyn i gyd, mae hi’n parhau i fywiogi’r byd â’i gwên.

Nid yw Aimee ar ei phen ei hun, yn anffodus. Mae cannoedd o blant yn ne Cymru sy’n byw gyda’r cyflwr awto-imiwn ofnadwy hwn nad oes gwellhad iddo. Mae’r bobl ifanc hyn yn haeddu gwasanaeth rhewmatoleg pediatrig amlddisgyblaethol penodedig. Mae gwasanaeth o’r fath yn hanfodol i sicrhau lleihad yn yr arthritis, cadw rheolaeth ar y clefyd, cynnal datblygiad arferol, a lleihau’r risg o anabledd gydol oes. Mae’r GIG yn Lloegr yn datgan y dylai fod un ymgynghorydd rhewmatoleg pediatrig, dau arbenigwr nyrsio, un ffisiotherapydd, ac un therapydd galwedigaethol ar gyfer pob miliwn o bobl. Mae gennym tua dwy filiwn o bobl yn byw yn ne Cymru ac eto, chwarter rhewmatolegydd oedolion cyfwerth ag amser llawn sydd gennym, heb rwydwaith clinigol ffurfiol na thîm amlddisgyblaethol. Mae hyn yn annerbyniol. Rydym yn gwneud cam ag Aimee a miloedd o blant tebyg iddi.

Rwy’n annog fy nghyd-Aelodau Cynulliad i ymuno â ni i alw ar Lywodraeth Cymru i ddarparu gwasanaeth rhewmatoleg pediatrig amlddisgyblaethol llawn yn ne Cymru ac i wella’r modd y caiff gwasanaethau eu darparu yng ngogledd Cymru. Dyma yw ein dyletswydd i Aimee, i’r miloedd o blant sy’n dioddef o gyflyrau gwynegol, a’n dyletswydd i’r plant sydd heb gael diagnosis eto. Cefnogwch y cynnig hwn. Diolch. Diolch yn fawr.