Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Ceisteanna (257, 258)

Fiona O'Loughlin

Ceist:

257. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the details of Garda numbers by station in County Kildare. [49919/17]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Fiona O'Loughlin

Ceist:

258. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the details of Garda numbers by station in County Laois. [49920/17]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 257 and 258 together.

As the Deputy will appreciate, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no direct role in the matter. Garda management keeps this distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the optimum use is made of these resources.

I am informed by the Commissioner that on the 30 September 2017, the latest date for which figures are readily available, the strength of the Laois/Offaly and Kildare Division was 324 and 341 respectively. There are also 17 Garda Reserves and 25 civilians attached to the Laois/Offaly Division and there are 20 Garda Reserves and 29 civilians attached to the Kildare Division. When appropriate, the work of local Gardaí is supported by a number of Garda national units such as the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the Armed Response Unit, the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau and the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau.

I am further informed by the Commissioner that since the reopening of the Garda College in September 2014, close to 1,400 recruits have attested as members of An Garda Síochána and have been assigned to mainstream duties nationwide, 66 and 72 of whom have been assigned to the Laois/Offaly and Kildare Division respectively. In addition, another 200 trainee Garda are scheduled to attest next month which will see Garda numbers, taking account of projected retirements, increase to around the 13,500 mark by year end - an increase of 500 since the end of 2016.

This Government is committed to ensuring a strong and visible police presence throughout the country in order to maintain and strengthen community engagement, provide reassurance to citizens and to deter crime. The substantial increase in Garda numbers is tangible progress on achieving this Government’s vision of an overall Garda workforce of 21,000 personnel by 2021 comprising 15,000 Garda members, 2,000 Reserve members and 4,000 civilians.

I am pleased to say that Budget 2018 will support the continuation of this high level of investment in the Garda workforce and ensure that the vision of an overall workforce of 21,000 by 2021 remains on track. A further 800 new Garda Recruits will enter the Garda College, an additional 500 civilians will also be recruited to fill critical skills gaps across the organisation and to facilitate the redeployment of Gardaí from administrative and technical duties to front-line operational duties. There are plans to strengthen the Garda Reserve with new Reserves expected to commence training early in 2018.

This focus on investment in personnel is critical. The moratorium on recruitment introduced in 2010 resulted in a significant reduction in the strength of An Garda Síochána. We are now rebuilding the organisation and providing the Commissioner with the resources needed to deploy increasing numbers of Gardaí across every Garda Division, including the Laois/Offaly Division and Kildare Division, in the coming years.

The information requested by the Deputy in relation to the strength of An Garda Síochána by county is not readily available in respect of An Garda Síochána as Gardaí are assigned on the basis of Divisions which do not necessarily accord with county boundaries. The information requested by the Deputy in relation to the number of Gardaí by station in the Laois/Offaly and Kildare Divisions as provided by the Commissioner is as set out in the tables attached as of 30 September 2017, the latest date for which figures are readily available.

STRENGTH OF THE KILDARE DIVISION 30 SEPTEMBER 2017

DISTRICT

STATION

TOTAL

KILDARE

ATHY

31

CASTLEDERMOT

4

KILDARE

34

MONASTEREVIN

5

NEWBRIDGE

46

RATHANGAN

3

TOTAL

123

LEIXLIP

CARBURY

7

CELBRIDGE

9

KILCOCK

10

LEIXLIP

60

MAYNOOTH

12

TOTAL

98

NAAS

CLANE

7

KILCULLEN

2

NAAS

109

ROBERTSTOWN

2

TOTAL

120

KILDARE TOTAL

341

STRENGTH OF THE LAOIS / OFFALY DIVISION ON 30 SEPTEMBER 2017

DISTRICT

STATION

TOTAL

BIRR

BANAGHER

5

BIRR

32

CLOGHAN

1

FERBANE

3

KILCORMAC

2

KINNITTY

1

SHINRONE

1

TOTAL

45

PORTLAOISE

ABBEYLEIX

21

ARLES

1

BALLYLINAN

2

BORRIS-IN-OSSORY

1

CLONASLEE

1

DURROW

1

MOUNTMELLICK

5

MOUNTRATH

3

PORTARLINGTON

14

PORTLAOISE

131

RATHDOWNEY

2

STRADBALLY

2

TOTAL

184

TULLAMORE

CLARA

5

DAINGEAN

2

EDENDERRY

13

RHODE

1

TULLAMORE

74

TOTAL

95

LAOIS / OFFALY TOTAL

324