Italian government seeks to punish use of English words
Italians who use English and other foreign words in official communications can be fined up to €100,000 ($108,705) under new legislation introduced Prime Minister Georgia Meloni Party of Brothers of Italy.
The bill was introduced by a member of the lower chamber of deputies, Fabio Rampelli, who was supported by the prime minister.
While the law applies to all foreign languages, it specifically targets “Anglomania” or the use of English words, which the draft says “demeans and insults” the Italian language, adding that this is even worse because Great Britain no longer part of the EU.
The bill, which has not yet been tabled in Parliament, requires all who hold positions in public administration, “written and oral knowledge and knowledge of the Italian language.” It also bans the use of English in official documentation, including “abbreviations and titles” of positions in companies operating in the country.
Foreign organizations will be required to have Italian-language versions of all internal regulations and employment contracts, according to the bill, which CNN has reviewed.
“It’s not just a matter of fashion, as fashion passes, Anglomania has implications for society as a whole,” the bill says.
The first article of the law ensures that even in offices that work with foreigners who do not speak Italian, Italian must be the main language.
Article 2 will make Italy “obligatory for the promotion and use of public goods and services in the national territory”. Failure to do so can result in a fine ranging from €5,000 ($5,435) to €100,000 ($108,705).
Under the proposed law, the Ministry of Culture will set up a committee responsible for “correct use of the Italian language and its pronunciation” in schools, the media, commerce and advertising.
This would mean that saying “bru-chetta” instead of “bru-sketta” could be a punishable offence.
The movement to defend the Italian language complements the government’s existing bid to protect the country’s cuisine.
Begins introduced a law banning the so-called synthetic or cellular cuisine. due to the lack of scientific research on the effects of synthetic food, and “to protect the heritage of our country and our agriculture based on the Mediterranean diet,” Meloni Health Minister Horazio Squillaci told a press conference.
Last week, the Italian ministers of culture and agriculture officially included Italian cuisine in the candidacy for UNESCO World Heritage status, a decision on which will be made in December 2025.