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Saeima conceptually approves increasing penalties state language violations

Photo: flickr.com/Saeima.
«By increasing sanctions for violations of state language rules, we will strengthen the principle detailed in the Constitution – Latvian language is the sole state language,» believes Justice Minister Dzintars Rasnačs.


On Thursday, 14 September, Saeima approved in the first reading Legal Affairs Committee’s amendments to Latvian Code of Administrative Violations that provide increased sanctions, including larger fines, for violations in the use of the state language, as reported by Saeima’s press-service.
 

Rasnačs welcomes the parliament’s decision to conceptually support the National Alliance’s amendments.
 

Also the minister admits that the penalty should be just and fit the severity of the violation. This is why it is important to work on the sanction mechanism, increase penalties for legal persons and establish stricter penalties for repeated offences. Increase of sanctions will also serve as a preventive measure,  Rasnačs said.
 

«I hope the number of precedents when officials intentionally and publicly ignore state language use requirements will become less common,» the justice minister comments on the importance of amendments.
 

Amendments provide for increasing sanctions and fines, especially for officials. They also provide a mechanism for taking away the right to serve as a public official temporarily for repeating the same offences within one year of the application of the last administrative penalty.
 

The parliament notes that current regulations provide fines for private persons but not legal persons. This does not comply with the principle of justice and the point of applying administrative fines. With that, the code should be changed to introduce administrative responsibility.
 

It is also planned to introduce responsibility for private and legal persons who initiate or order manufacture of newsletters, catalogues and other materials for their distribution in state language and foreign language without the person’s consent. This excludes cases when responsibility for aforementioned materials’ order or distribution is provided to other persons.

BNN

16-09-2017
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