Written answers

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

Department of Justice and Equality

Peace Commissioners

Martin Browne (Tipperary, Sinn Fein)
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436. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the number of peace commissioners appointed in County Tipperary in the past five years; the way in which this compares to the national average; the criteria in place for the appointment of peace commissioners; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [5774/20]

Photo of Charles FlanaganCharles Flanagan (Laois-Offaly, Fine Gael)
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Peace commissioners are appointed (and may be removed from that appointment) by the Minister for Justice and Equality under section 88 of the Courts of Justice Act, 1924. The office of peace commissioner is an honorary appointment and peace commissioners receive no remuneration or compensation by way of fees or expenses for their services.

An application for appointment may be submitted by a person who is interested in obtaining an appointment or a third party may submit a nomination in respect of a person considered suitable for appointment. Nominations are generally received from public representatives.  A local Garda Superintendent sometimes requests an appointment in a particular area in the public interest.

There is no qualifying examination involved but appointees are required to be of good character and they are usually well established in the local community. Persons convicted of serious offences are considered unsuitable for appointment. To this end, a background check on nominees is carried out by An Garda Síochána.

Persons who are members of professions or employed in occupations which engage in legal work or related activities and members of the clergy are, as a matter of practice, not appointed because of their occupation. Civil servants are usually only appointed where the performance of their official duties requires an appointment (I.e. ex-officio).

Statistical information pertaining to the appointment of Peace Commissioners nationally and in Co. Tipperary for the period May 2015 to April 2020 is set out as follows.

Total number of peace commissioners appointed nationally in the last 5 years Total number of peace commissioners appointed in Tipperary in the last 5 years Average number of appointments per county, including Dublin, in the last 5 years Average number of appointments per county, excluding Dublin, in the last 5 years
519 33 20 16

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