CORK city’s Sinn Fein general election candidates have called for an increase in Gardaí and station opening hours in Cork city.
Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire and Thomas Gould have launched a new local policing document entitled ‘A Safer Cork is possible’, which makes a series of key recommendations for the future of policing in the city.
They’re aiming to increase the number of gardaí to record highs by recruiting 800 Gardaí per annum, with an annual allocation going directly to Cork city that is reflective of the population of the city.
Under the proposals, Gardaí would be provided with up-to-date technologies, while funding would be increased for community schemes such as CCTV, and they want to establish a National Property Register to aid in stolen property recovery.
Sinn Féin wants to reform Joint Policing Committees to give local communities more power in how they wish to see the gardaí operating in their respective areas.
Finally, they’re aiming to restore the number of community gardaí back to 2010 levels and to start a process to identify Garda stations that are suitable to reopen, while extending the operating hours of other stations.
Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire said: “In recent weeks and months, many people in Cork have become deeply concerned by the incidence of crime. Some of these crimes have included murders and assaults of the most appalling kind.
“We need to get to grips with this, we all want Cork to be a safe place to be.
“All the evidence shows that visibility of Gardaí is crucial to tackle crime. However, according to what we have found in our report, the majority of stations are down from 2010 levels, and in some instances such as Blackrock/Mahon, which is down 13, there is a significant reduction.
“Sinn Féin will seek to see to it that the Gardaí are given the help they require to enable them to do their job of protecting citizens to the best of their ability.”