Fianna Fáil TD for Kildare North Frank O’Rourke says more resources are needed to support the roll-out of An Garda Síochána’s renewal and modernisation programme.
Deputy O’Rourke made the comments after meeting with senior Garda management for the Kildare division in which he expressed support for the efforts being taken to promote community policing in the region.
Deputy O’Rourke said, “Last week I met with senior Gardaí to discuss the rollout of a number of community policing initiatives in the county. I was encouraged by the information I received, including confirmation that 10 probationary Gardaí will be assigned to Kildare from July this year. Further Gardaí are expected to be transferred to the Kildare Division as the year progresses. Fianna Fáil pushed for increased Garda recruitment under the Confidence and Supply Arrangement and it’s positive to see that this is beginning to have a positive impact on the ground in communities right across Kildare.
“At the meeting I emphasised the importance of tackling the scourge of burglaries in the county alongside the occurrence of anti-social behaviour. I also pointed out the importance of maintaining a strong and adequately staffed Garda Drugs Unit in the region. The meeting also discussed road safety measures and I highlighted the need for additional resources for the Garda Traffic Corps in Kildare, especially when you consider some of the busiest roads in the entire country pass through the county.
“I was particularly impressed by the proposals brought forward by Chief Superintendent Roche and his team in regards enhancing community policing in Kildare. I have been assured that there will be increased Garda visibility in towns such as Celbridge, Maynooth, Leixlip and Kilcock in the months ahead. People will also be given a constant point of contact within the service who will take ownership of community policing in particular areas. I’m also encouraged by the measures being taken to enhance community policing in and around Maynooth University.
“It’s important to recognise that An Garda Síochána’s renewal and modernisation programme, which is leading to new community policing practices, can only be successful if it is backed up by adequate resources. The service has been subject to severe cutbacks in recent years and it’s clear that targeted investment is needed to ensure Gardaí on the ground are given the tools they need to carry out their duties,” concluded Deputy O’Rourke.