North Dublin lost 152 Gardaí
Whilst we regularly hear of the plight of villages and towns around Ireland losing their banks, their post-offices or their Garda Stations, our communities here in Fingal have sadly lost many of those vital services, none worse in my view than the loss or the downgrading of our local Garda Stations, as this Government have done in Malahide and Rush. North Dublin has lost 152 Gardaí over the past five years. There has been a 20% increase in burglaries in the past year alone, and a detection rate of just 19%. This is clear and direct evidence that the slash and burn of vital Garda resources by Fine Gael and Labour is directly responsible for the dramatic rise in local crime. And now, in the recent allocation of newly graduated Gardaí, 5 were posted to Ballymun, but not a single one to North County.
Gardaí back on our Streets
Resources and personnel have been stripped from An Garda over the past four years, and every community has seen the impact. This must be reversed immediately.
You will not be surprised that I am totally in favour of Gardaí on the Streets in all our communities, and I am going to fight for that here in Fingal, because it is the only system that works.
Gardaí in our Communities
We want to see the Gardaí out in our communities, walking or cycling on a daily basis, on our streets, in our parks, and within our communities. That’s what made the Garda Service great from its very inception and we must return to that community-based service. Community Policing must be at the centre of everything we do in the Justice area. Prevention is as important as detection.
No more Closures of Garda Stations
Our Gardaí have had one hand tied behind their backs by this Fine Gael /Labour Government. At present they simply do not have the capacity to maintain the level of presence in our communities that is so desperately needed. North County didn’t even get one new Garda in the most recent allocation. There will be no more Garda Station Closures under Fianna Fáil. A priority for me is to restore Malahide Garda Station back to a full 24/7 roster, to reopen Rush Garda Station and establish a satellite station for Donabate and Portrane. We will properly resource our Gardaí in fulfilling their crucial role of protecting our communities, day and night.