1. Home
  2. AGSI Blog
  3. Dáil Debate: Need for Increased Garda Resources in North West Kildare

Dáil Debate: Need for Increased Garda Resources in North West Kildare


Remarks by Minister of State Aodhán Ó Ríordáin TD
on behalf of the Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD

Topical issues Debate Dáil Eireann

7 April 2015

The need to increase Garda resources in North West Kildare, given the

escalation of intimidation against Gardaí and residents in the Carbury area

in particular.

– Deputy Anthony Lawlor

The need to prevent personal threats and intimidation of An Garda Síochána

by criminal gangs, and to deploy additional resources, as required,

including North West Kildare, to combat the issue.

– Deputy Bernard J. Durkan

I am speaking on behalf of the Minister for Justice and Equality who

regrets that she cannot be present due to other official commitments. She

is grateful to the Deputies for raising this important matter in the House


The Minister has asked me to assure the Deputies that she is, of course,

aware of the threats made against members of the Garda Síochána in County


I have no doubt that every Member of this House will share the Minister’s

view, and mine, that such actions are to be roundly condemned. I know that

we also all appreciate how important it is that we discuss this issue in a

manner which does not heighten the distress for those impacted and their

families. It is, regrettably, also the case that the issue of intimidation

of Gardaí going about their duty is not confined to the instances referred

to by the Deputies.

An Garda Síochána plays a key role in keeping our citizens and our

communities safe and secure. On our behalf, day in and day out, individual

Gardaí carry out challenging, demanding and sometimes dangerous tasks in

the course of their duty. In doing this the Gardaí are deserving of the

support they get from the communities that they serve. The Minister knows

that individual Gardaí, in the best traditions of the Force, will not be

intimidated from carrying out their duties and will continue to do so

without fear or favour.

As the House will, of course, understand it would neither be wise nor

appropriate for the Minister to detail the operational measures that the

Garda authorities have taken or would take generally in these situations.

I can say on her behalf, however, that she has asked to be kept briefed by

the Commissioner in relation to the specific circumstances at issue here.

She is aware that whatever protective and detection measures are deemed

appropriate by the Garda authorities will certainly be taken. The

individual safety of Gardaí is a priority for the Garda authorities, as it

is for all of us. While the criminal law in this area is being kept under

ongoing review, I should also say that there is a range of robust

legislative provisions available to the Garda authorities in circumstances

where threats or assaults are made against Gardaí.

Insofar as the question of resources for policing generally in Kildare is

concerned, the Deputies will appreciate that the deployment of personnel

across the State is a matter for the Garda Commissioner. I can advise them

that the number of Gardaí assigned to the Division as the 31st March was

299 Gardaí, of which 73 were in the Leixlip District which includes Carbury

Garda Station, where there were 5 Gardaí assigned. Two additional Garda

personnel have been allocated to Carbury in recent times. The allocation

of overall Garda resources is kept under continuing review in the context

of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure these resources are

put to the best possible use.

For the Minister and the Government’s part, however, the key point is that

thanks to the resumption of recruitment, the Commissioner now has the

capacity to deploy new Gardaí for the first time since 2009. In fact, on

the 8th of May, five new probationer Gardaí are due to transfer to the

Kildare Garda Division. Similarly, investments are being made in vehicles

and IT, and in the recruitment of specialist professional staff. Policing

and community safety in Kildare will undoubtedly benefit from this

injection of resources, as it will in all other Garda Divisions.

This investment demonstrates the Minister and the Government’s commitment

to supporting the Gardaí in carrying out their duties, including in the

ongoing fight against organised and serious crime. We have not been under

any illusion about the depths to which those involved in this type of

criminality will sink. These latest incidents reinforces this and An Garda

Síochána will continue to confront, disrupt and bring to justice those

involved, on behalf of all law-abiding citizens.