Translation Services

Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 11th June 2014.

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Photo of David Ruffley David Ruffley Conservative, Bury St Edmunds

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the cost was of translation and interpreter services used by each borough and county council in England and Wales in each of the last five years.

Photo of Brandon Lewis Brandon Lewis The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Communities and Local Government

This information is not centrally held.

As outlined in the written ministerial statement of 12 March 2013, Hansard, column 5WS, we have given guidance to local authorities to stop translating into foreign languages, as it wastes taxpayers' money, undermines community cohesion, promotes segregation and discourages integration into British society.

In that statement, it was noted that estimates had suggested that local authorities were previously spending nearly £20 million a year translating into foreign languages. This illustrates the scope for councils to make savings by stopping such translation, using the money instead to support frontline services and keep council tax down.

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