Sámi law and language rules From the Norwegian Sámi Parliament As of June 28, 2005
Where do the laws apply? • In the administrative area for the Sámi language • 6 municipalities (5 in Finnmark and 1 in Troms) • The administration of Finnmark and Troms • Public agencies
Sámi law from June 12 1987 has 4 parts: • 1. General resolution • 2. Sámi parliament • 3. Sámi language • 4. Transitional rules and implementation
1. General resolutions • The goal of the law is to create conditions so that the Sámi people of Norway can protect and develop their language, their culture, and their society.
§ 1-5 Sámi language • Sámi and Norwegian are languages of equal status. They shall be treated equally according to the resolution in part 3.
§ 3-3 Right to receive responses in Sámi • Anyone who addresses themselves to a local public agency in Sámi has the right to a response in Sámi. • Anyone who addresses themselves in Sámi in writing to a regional public agency in the [Sámi] administrative area, has the right to a written response in Sámi.
§ 3-5 Right to use of Sámi in health- and social sector • Anyone who wishes to use Sámi to take care of their own interests in interacting with local and regional public health and social institutions in the [Sámi] administrative area, has the right to be served in Sámi.
§ 3-7 Right to leave for education • The staff in a local or regional public agency in the [Sámi] administrative area has the right to take a leave with salary in order to learn Sámi when the agency has need for this knowledge. • This right can be dependent upon whether the staff person will commit to work for the agency for a certain time after the education.
§ 3-8 Right to instruction in Sámi • Everyone has the right to instruction in Sámi. • For instruction in and about Sámi in grade school and in high school the rules apply in and in conformity with the grade school law and the law concerning high school instruction.
§ 3-9 Sámi in municipal administration • The municipal council can decide whether Sámi will be used equally with Norwegian in the whole of or parts of a municipality’s jurisdiction.
§ 3-11 Access to appeal • The person involved can appeal to the agency which is immediately superior to the agency involved in the appeal. • The district governor is the appeal authority if the appeal involves a municipal or district agency. • Sámi organizations and Sámi public agencies also have the right to appeal. This also applies to cases where no individual person is concerned.
Regulation § 1: Supervision • The Ministry of Culture supervises the enforcement of the rules in Sámi law part 3 and this regulation. • All public agencies that are covered by Sámi law part 3 and this regulation have the duty to care for making sure that the rules are followed. • Each agency has the responsibility to have competent Sámi speaking personnel within a reasonable time.
Regulation § 5: Rules concerning leave of absence • The staff in an agency that is given leave of absence to study Sámi at an educational institution has the right to full or partial salary during their studies, depending upon the extent of the study and the needs of the employer. • Leave of absence with salary is conditional upon whether the staff person commits to work for the agency for a determined amount of time after the end of their study.
The Sámi Parliament’s language board • The Sámi Parliament’s language board was established on January 1, 2001 and replaces the former Sámi language council. • The board is established in conformity with Sámi law 3-12.
The language board’s tasks • Supervision of legally-enforced measures • Other measures