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An Garda Síochána

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 25 November 2021

Thursday, 25 November 2021

Questions (169)

Cormac Devlin


169. Deputy Cormac Devlin asked the Minister for Justice the number of gardaí in the DMR east as of 1 November 2021 or the latest date available; the number in the past 12 months previously; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [58054/21]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy will be aware, under the Garda Síochána Act 2005, the Garda Commissioner is responsible for the management and administration of An Garda Síochána, including the deployment of Garda members. As Minister, I have no direct role in these matters.

I am assured, however, that Garda management keeps this distribution of resources under continual review in the context of policing priorities and crime trends, to ensure their optimum use. I further understand that it is a matter for the Divisional Chief Superintendent to determine the optimum distribution of duties among the personnel available to him or her, having regard to the profile of each area within the Division and its specific needs.

I am advised by the Garda authorities that on 31 October 2021, there were 370 Gardaí assigned to DMR East. On 31 October 2020, there were 379 Gardaí assigned to DMR East.

As the Deputy will appreciate, Garda numbers nationwide can be affected by a number of factors, including retirements, medical discharges and resignations. The impact of policing measures and other steps to support the public health restrictions has also, exceptionally, had an impact across the country over the past two years. However, I am pleased to note that recruitment has resumed and that 385 trainees are engaged in their training following intakes in May, July, September and earlier this month.

Budget 2022 has provided an unprecedented allocation of in excess of €2 billion to An Garda Síochána, which includes funding for the recruitment of up to an additional 800 Gardaí and a further 400 Garda staff, subject to the public health situation. This significant investment demonstrates the Government's commitment to increasing the Garda workforce to enable the organisation to keep our communities safe.

For the Deputy's information, detailed statistics on Garda workforce numbers are published on my Department's website and updated on a monthly basis.