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O’Brien hits out at scandalous salaries of senior Gardaí and prison service staff

2 April, 2012 - by Jonathan O'Brien TD

Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Jonathan O’Brien has hit out at the salaries of €150,000 given to senior civil servants and Gardaí.

Deputy O’Brien described the salaries as “a scandal” at a time when allocations of funding to agencies working on immigration and asylum, equality, disability, human rights, charities and youth justice, as well as frontline services have had their budgets slashed.

The Cork North Central TD said;

“I asked the Minister for Justice to provide me with information regarding the number of staff employed by An Garda Síochana, the Property Registration Authority, and the Irish Prison Service, who are earning over €100,000 and €150,000. The information I received in return is scandalous. In the Property Registration Authority alone there are seven people earning between €100,000 and €150,000.

“The Garda Commissioner is currently engaged in a process of closing rural Garda stations and cutting the opening hours of others, as well as reducing the number of Gardaí stationed in communities as a result of “cutbacks.” Meanwhile, the Garda Commissioner and two Deputy Commissioners are paid over €150,000 each. How the Minister for Justice can justify such ridiculous wages is beyond me. Drug gangs are running amok and more and more rural people’s homes are being robbed. Instead of investing in policing, the Minister is paying these scandalous salaries. There are a further 23 people employed by An Garda Síochana who earn between €100,000 and €150,000. It is disgraceful.

“The Irish Prison Service runs a series of prisons which have been found time and time again to breach the most basic of human rights standards and yet, the Director General is paid between €150,000 and €200,000 to run it. A further 18 people are paid between €100,000 and €150,000 each. Irish prisons are overcrowded, filthy, Victorian institutions where people are degraded on a daily basis by having to slop out. I am calling on the Minister to explain why he feels the practice of paying out these massive salaries while cutting back on, and in some cases not even providing, basic frontline services is appropriate.”

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