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Ó Snodaigh welcome expected announcement of expansion of Joint Policing Committees

20 September, 2008

Speaking at a meeting of Sinn Féin representatives of Joint Policing Committees from throughout the State today the party's spokesperson on Justice Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD welcomed news that Joint Policing Committees are to be rolled out in every Council area in the state.

Speaking today Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, "The Department of Justice have confirmed that the Minister intends to announce the expansion of Joint Policing Committees across the state next week. Sinn Féin welcomes this news as we have been concerned for some time now about the delay in this matter.

"There are currently 29 pilot Joint Policing Committees in operation across the state. These were established on the back of a campaign by Sinn Féin for the establishment of District Policing Partnerships to maximise community involvement in local policing.

"The 29 pilot committees have clearly shown the potential of these groups to allow communities a positive and constructive influence on Garda operations in their area. They also afford elected representatives an opportunity to question senior Gardaí on their actions and inactions which enhances local accountability.

"Sinn Féin has long advocated greater community involvement and consultation on policing matters in their areas and with the expansion of the project across the state we will see the number of Joint Policing Committees increase to 114.

"We are eager to see these new committees up and running at the earliest opportunity and our representatives on councils will be calling for their speedy establishment once the announcement is made.

"Sinn Féin will be launching our submission to the 2009 Garda Policing Plan on Tuesday and the expansion of JPCs will be integral to the delivery of our proposals." ENDS

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