Sports Direct urged to ditch "discriminatory and offensive" language policy


Plaid AM says 'English only' rule shows profound ignorance

Plaid Cymru AM for Arfon and Shadow Cabinet Secretary for the Welsh Language, Sian Gwenllian, has today urged Sports Direct‎ to ditch what she calls the store's "discriminatory and offensive" language policy.

Sian Gwenllian AM's call comes following reports that Sports Direct staff in their Bangor store have received a letter outlining the company's "English only" policy and instructing staff not to converse in any other language in store.

The Plaid Cymru AM for Arfon demanded a formal apology from Sports Direct and a repeal of the policy which she said revealed "profound ignorance" of the social and cultural fabric of Bangor and the surrounding area.

Sian Gwenllian AM said:

"The letter received by staff at the Sports Direct store in Bangor reveals a discriminatory and offensive language policy.

"In an area such as Bangor where there is a high number of Welsh speakers, it is highly likely that such a policy would deny staff members the right to converse in their own language.

"This is the latest in a string of misguided and regressive moves by Sports Direct - a company already marred by scandals surrounding low wages and sexism.

"Sports Direct has so far tried - and failed - to defend their stance on the matter. This is simply not good enough. The company must issue a formal apology to its staff and customers, many of whom will no doubt be appalled by this incident.

"The fact that Sports Direct is attempting to roll out such a policy in a truly multilingual area such as Bangor reveals the company's profound ignorance of the area and its social and cultural make-up.

"I will be submitting a formal complaint to the owner of Sports Direct and would urge everyone who cares about fairness and equality in the workplace ‎to do the same."

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  • Dafydd Morris
    commented 2017-08-06 19:35:17 +0100
    Ia, cywilydd. Ac, am y lleiaf, “Dear Company: if I enter your esteemed emporium in Arfon, desirous of purchasing some one or more of your products, but wishing first to discuss that with your sales advisor, and to do that in Welsh (my choice in Bangor, for clarity and pleasure; in Aldershot I’d certainly choose English), do I now understand that your present ruling prevents that advisor from making the sale on your behalf? Doesn’t sound good customer care to me, Brian.” ;) [Emoji dychan-trwy-deg yn lle dicter…]

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