Tuesday, 14 May 2019
An tOrd Gnó - Order of Business
In the programme for Government, there is a commitment to providing and prioritising protection from and a reduction in crime by giving proper investment to An Garda Síochána. Last week, I attended a public meeting of a Louth policing committee to discuss threats against a local family. I commend that family on the courage it demonstrated in standing up to the thugs who have already attacked the family home. Chief Superintendent Christy Mangan told us Louth does not have enough gardaí. He said he did not have enough gardaí recently to secure a crime scene.
He also stated that he is unable to open some stations, such as Ardee, as often as he would like. He further stated - I know this and have raised the matter many times here - that there are not enough resources for drug addiction services, including mental health services, in the area. He then stated - and I wrote this down - that if we do not tackle this, we will lose a generation of our young people. Negotiations on the next budget will commence shortly. Will the Taoiseach commit to providing a significant increase in Garda funding in the next financial year? Will he ensure that the State stands shoulder to shoulder with citizens such as those in Louth who are making a stand for themselves and for the rest of us?