Stop removal of Irish-language option from Bank of Ireland ATMs (PETITION)
As some of you may already be aware, Bank of Ireland (BoI) recently made the decision to make its ATMs monolingual - from now on, services will only be provided in English.
For years now, BoI ATMs had an Irish-language option that allowed users to complete their transactions in Irish. Recently, however, the bank has made the decision to remove the Irish-language option from its ATMs. They have explained their decision by saying that the low number of people choosing to use Irish means that bilingual ATMs aren't 'viable'. Anyone interested in finding out more about the situation can read the following article (in Irish): Níl sé ‘viable’ rogha Ghaeilge a chur ar ATManna Bhanc na hÉireann
Understandably, many Irish-language speakers - including myself - are opposed to this decision. As many of you will be aware, multilingual ATMs are standard all over the world and it would thus be expected that, if the bank has decided to abandon Irish, there must be some prohibitive extra costs specifically attached to providing an Irish-language option. To date, however, BoI has released no figures for the cost of maintaining bilingual ATMs, nor have they provided precise figures about the use of the Irish-language option. As Irish is a minority language, it is to be expected that use of the option would be low. In many cases, however, the 'low usage' figure cited by the bank seems to be attributable to the bank's own policies, since it has become clear that the bank removed the Irish-language option from ATMs located in Gaeltacht areas, regions where one would expect use of the Irish-language option to be disproportionately high, and where residents should surely have a right to conduct their business through Irish. Without precise figures for cost and usage, this decision looks a lot like an unnecessary step backwards, back to a monolingual Ireland, where Irish is felt to have no place outside the classroom and where people who speak Irish are denied access to services in their language.
With this in mind, an Irish Senator - Aodhán Ó Ríordáin - has started an online petition, asking BoI to reverse their decision. Having been started yesterday, the petition already has over 1,500 signatures and continues to grow. If you happen to be a BoI customer unhappy about this decision, or merely a speaker/learner of Irish who believes BoI's Irish-speaking customers should continue to have the right to use Irish to access services which they pay for, I encourage you to sign the petition and to share it with friends who may be interested.
The petition is available here: Return Gaeilge Option to BOI ATMs
Bank of Ireland. IRELAND...
Secondly, having couple of options, buttons, descriptions and a flag in a different language can be coded by a good programmer in 30 minutes and doesn't cost anything. I am a coder myself, I know.
Third, I am a foreigner living in Ireland for 15 years and the way some institutions treat your own heritage and the soul of this nation is despicable.
I'm Australian too and I have also signed.I love learning Irish and I think that People in Ireland have the right to do whatever they want in their native tongue
If there’s one thing that bankers understand, it’s money. Boycotting them would be far more likely to get their attention than an online petition would.
Signed from United States. Hopefully this helps change some minds, but scilling probably has the right idea: a boycott would send a much stronger message to them. With any luck, they'll revert this change, as it can only weaken the health of the Irish language. And frankly, I can't imagine this would save the bank all that much money, either. Good luck!
If a boycott were to be arranged it would have to be very well organised, widespread and backed by larger organisations, such as corporations that are sympathetic to the cause.
A few hundred people on Duolingo taking their money out of the bank would make very little difference, especially considering the billions of dollars the bank handles for corporate clients.