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Sinn Féin to address exclusion of party from Policing Committee

26 January, 2007

A Sinn Féin delegation will meet with the Chair of the Fingal Joint Policing Committee (JPC) this morning to discuss the ongoing exclusion of the party from the body. Local councillor Felix Gallagher will be joined by Justice spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD and the Vice Chair of the Dublin City Policing Committee, Cllr Larry O'Toole.

Cllr Gallagher said: "Sinn Féin has been excluded from the Fingal Joint Policing Committee by Fine Gael and Labour despite the legislative guidelines that state every political grouping should be represented. I am also entitled to put written questions to the Committee and these too are being blocked, with the Garda Chief Superintendent being prevented from answering them at the last meeting, where not a single representative from Mulhuddart bothered to turn up.

"We now have the situation where the Blanchardstown area, which has the highest rates of crime in Fingal, is not being represented on this Committee and I am being excluded from participating either as an elected representative or as a member of the public.

"The Joint Policing Committees have the potential to improve the delivery and accountability of policing in the pilot areas covered and we want them to work. However we believe that the JPCs will only realise their potential if the committees are genuinely based on and guided by the principles of inclusivity and participation.

"We are holding the meeting with the Chair of the Fingal JPC with a view to exploring options to ensure all party inclusion on the committees as in the other three Dublin local authorities."


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