Tuesday, 20 October 2015
Department of Justice and Equality
149. To ask the Minister for Justice and Equality if there are figures available regarding the additional Garda Síochána resources which have been freed up arising from the reorganisation of the service geographically as well as administratively; if such resources will be specified per division; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [35251/15]
The Garda District and Station Rationalisation Programme was implemented in An Garda Síochána during 2012 and 2013. In its review of the Garda Station Network, Garda management concluded in relation to certain stations, many of which were only open part-time and manned by a single Garda, that resources could be better deployed and more effectively used on the front line if those stations no longer had to be staffed and maintained. In reaching these conclusions, Garda management reviewed all aspects of the Garda Síochána policing model, including the deployment of personnel, the utilisation of modern technologies and the overall operation of Garda stations. The Programme supports the provision of a modern 21st century policing service for both urban and rural areas and allows front line Gardaí to be managed and deployed with greater mobility, greater flexibility, and in a more focused fashion, particularly with regard to various targeted police operations. As a result of the Programme, communities have benefited from increased Garda visibility and increased patrolling hours which has enabled An Garda Síochána to deliver an improved policing service to the public.
As the Deputy will appreciate, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the distribution of personnel among the Garda Regions, Divisions, and Districts. Garda management keep this distribution under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the best possible use is made of resources. I am informed by the Garda Commissioner that in regard to the deployment of Garda personnel, a distribution model is used which takes into account all relevant factors including population, crime trends and the policing needs of each individual Garda Division. It is the responsibility of the Divisional Officer to allocate personnel within his/her Division. In the context of this dynamic model of resource allocation it is not possible to give a break down of Garda resources in the manner requested by the Deputy.