Halt Garda station closures and increase Garda recruitment - Mac Lochlainn
Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Justice and Equality Pádraig Mac Lochlainn TD has again called on the government to halt Garda station closures and to increase Garda recruitment.
Speaking on the Criminal Justice (Burglary of Dwellings) Bill 2015, Deputy Mac Lochlainn welcomed its targeting of serial offenders but pointed out that the structural causes that give rise to the problem of burglaries are a result of the direct decisions made by this government, particularly the closure of rural Garda stations.
Speaking in the Dáil today, Deputy Mac Lochlainn said:
“It is this government’s austerity agenda that creates the environment in which crime is increasing: a lack of resources available to people is well known to increase cases of theft and burglary. Similarly misguided decisions to close Garda stations in order to make small savings to the exchequer merely increase the opportunity for criminal activity and add to the uncertainty and fear that the citizens in this state are already experiencing under seven years of austerity.
“As always, it is the poor, the isolated and the vulnerable that suffer most under this government and this Bill, while welcome, does not address the root causes of the increase in criminal activity and the negative social consequences of austerity.”
Deputy Mac Lochlainn also called for an increase in Garda numbers back over the safe threshold of 14,000 and keep the numbers there with ongoing recruitment.