Thursday, 2 May 2013

Questions (33)

Michael Moynihan

Question:

33. Deputy Michael Moynihan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current waiting times for Garda vetting in 2011, 2012 and to date in 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [20759/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am informed by the Garda authorities that the average processing time for Garda vetting applications for the years 2011 and 2012 was approximately 8 weeks. The current average processing time for applications is approximately 12 weeks from date of receipt, which was the average processing time for applications in 2010. However, seasonal fluctuations and the necessity to seek additional information on particular applications can result in this processing time being exceeded on occasion.

All organisations registered for Garda Vetting are aware of the processing time-frames for the receipt of Garda vetting and have been advised to factor this into their recruitment and selection process.

Following discussions with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, sanction was granted for an additional 25 staff to be re-deployed from the Department of Agriculture to the Garda Central Vetting Unit. These personnel are currently undergoing training and will be operational within the vetting service as soon as possible.

Since I became Minister, it has been a priority for me that processing times should be kept to a minimum consistent with maintaining the overall integrity of the vetting system. This is an absolute necessity given the very important role of the vetting system. I am currently considering other measures which should have a positive impact on processing times.