The number of Garda members increase to 14,467, the largest number of sworn Garda members in 10 years, following the passing out of 201 newly attested gardai today.
The attestation of the new members of An Garda Síochána means the largest number of Garda rank (11,756), largest ever number of Inspectors (381) and largest number of Sergeant rank (2,105) in 10 years.
Fifty-seven female and 144 male probationary gardaí braved the elements of wind and rain today as they marched on parade at the Garda College, watched on by their families and partners, the Garda Commissioner and the Minister for Justice and Equality.
Probationary Gardaí on parade at Garda College today. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
The increases in Inspectors and Sergeants expand our supervisory capacity, which was a key request by Garda members at all ranks under the Garda Cultural Audit and will enable the organisation to enhance the delivery of community-focused policing as part of the Garda Operating Model.
There has also been an increase in Detective numbers to 2,181, the largest number of Detectives ever in An Garda Síochána. This includes growth in specialised investigators in areas such as sexual crime and child abuse, organised crime and economic crime. Detective numbers include Divisional Detective Units such as Divisional Protective Service Units (DPSU), National Detective Units (DOCB, CCIU, GNECB, GNPSB, GNIB, NBCI etc.), Special Detective Units and Garda Headquarters Units.
Transformation within An Garda Síochána and investment in personnel has continued as the numbers of civilian personnel within the service currently stand at 2,976, the largest yet. This has resulted in the reassignment of 602 sworn Garda members from administrative duties to operational duties.
The number of Garda Reserves currently stands at 458. The Commission on the Future of Policing in Ireland recommended that recruitment of additional Garda Reserves should be paused pending a strategic review into the Garda Reserve. This review is now complete and An Garda Síochána intends to publish a Garda Reserve Implementation and Action Plan Strategy in the near future.
57 female gardaí were attested at the Garda College today. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
Today’s ceremony brings to 3,200 the number of new Gardaí that have attested and been assigned to frontline policing duties since the reopening of the Garda Training College in 2014. The re-organisation of Garda structures, through the new operating model, is also assisting in freeing up additional resources for frontline Gardaí.
Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan T.D. noted both legal reforms and Garda initiatives underway that are ensuring a more victim centred approach in the criminal justice system. Speaking at the Garda College today, and on the eve of European Day for Victims of Crime, Minister Flanagan welcomed the new Victims Charter, which he launched earlier this morning.
“The Charter, which details the service and supports offered by the State and voluntary groups who work with victims of crime, can be found at the dedicated website victimscharter.ie. It also describes the criminal justice system from the perspective of a victim of crime and explains what they can expect when interacting with it.”
Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan T.D. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
In a message to the 201 garda probationers, Minister Flanagan said “effective policing depends on securing the confidence, support and cooperation of communities. Gardaí have always worked with the most vulnerable in our society – through the caring and supportive delivery of community policing; and in dealing sensitively with victims of crime. This is a proud tradition that I have no doubt you will adopt as your own.”
Of the 201 probationers that attested on 21 February 2020, 19 were born outside of the jurisdiction. There are 19 Probationer Gardaí in this Intake born outside the State – in Germany, Romania, England, USA, Latvia, Australia, Hong Kong, Poland and Italy.
28% of the probationer Gardaí that attested today are women. The number of women in An Garda Síochána has steadily increased. Today there are 57 women attesting and 144 men.
Gardaí on parade at Garda College today. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said the gardaí need to engage with communities. “We are continually growing the number of Gardaí on the front-line with today being just another example. This is happening not just through recruitment, but also re-deployment of Gardaí from administrative roles to front-line duty.”
“An Garda Síochána need you to engage with communities, use all the information at your disposal to solve problems, be responsive to local concerns, work in partnerships with key stakeholders, and provide a professional, ethical and human rights based policing service.
Commissioner Harris praised the probationary gardaí, and noted it being their choice to carry out their parade despite the inclement weather. Addressing the new gardaí, he said “I also want you to work hard, be visible, be accessible, be polite, and demonstrate every day your commitment to keeping people safe.
“Your class has already shown their commitment to participating in and highlighting the good work taking place here in the Garda College via the College’s Facebook page. You have joined An Garda Síochána to make a difference. To make a difference to individuals, to communities, and to society as a whole.”
Garda Commissioner Drew Harris. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
- Regional Station Allocations:
- 92 Dublin Metropolitan Region
- 46 East Region
- 17 North West Region
- 46 South West Region
Hats-off to Garda Intake 192. Photo: Declan Keogh / Emergency Times
The Emergency Services ‘Blue Light Summit’ takes place on 27th and 28th March at Breaffy House Resort, Co. Mayo. For more, visit www.bluelightsummit.ie