9 Gardaí assigned to Laois/ Offaly out of new batch of recruits – Cllr Carol Nolan
Commenting today on figures received from the Office of the Minister of Justice in response to a Parliamentary Question from her party colleague, Deputy Pearse Doherty, Sinn Féin General Election candidate and local councillor, Carol Nolan, has welcomed the news but criticised the ongoing lack of investment in An Garda Síochána.
Cllr Nolan said:
“I would firstly like to extend a very warm welcome to the 9 new Gardaí that have been assigned to the Laois Offaly area. I hope they have a very fulfilling career here protecting our communities.
“While I am delighted that the Laois/ Offaly area has been fortunate enough to receive 9 new recruits from the first batch of recruits since 2009, there is no escaping the fact that the lack of investment in our Gardaí has had a serious impact on our communities.
“Since 2010 the number of Gardaí stationed in the Laois/ Offaly area has declined from 320 to 271 as of March 2015 – a loss of 49 Gardaí.
“CSO Figures available at the end of 2015 show that there has been an increase in assaults, burglaries, sexual offences, theft and fraud when compared to 2014 figures.
“Our older people in particular have become more isolated in their homes as a result of the cruel cuts to home help supports, the telephone allowance and transport routes, making them more vulnerable and fearful.
“This week Sinn Féin launched Our Citizen’s Charter for Older People, which pledges our commitment to reverse some of the harshest cuts implemented by this Government and restore a decent standard of living to our older citizens.
“Our Charter also pledges the recruitment of 550 Gardaí per year in order to restore An Garda Síochána to a 14,000 strong force and to provide extra safeguards for security and safety for older people who live at home.
“A Sinn Féin Government will prioritise investment into adequately resourcing our police force in order to effectively defend our communities.”