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More Garda Stations closed in Tipperary than whole of Dublin combined - Mattie McGrath

Independent TD Mattie McGrath has said he is calling on the Garda Commissioner, Drew Harris, to outline his plans to substantially increase the number and availability of Gardaí in the Tipperary Division. Deputy McGrath was speaking after it was confirmed to him in a parliamentary reply that Tipperary has seen the closure of 7 Garda Stations under the Garda District and Station Rationalisation Programme, while closures across the Dublin North, Dublin North Central, Dublin South, Dublin South Central, Dublin East and Dublin West Garda areas amounted to just 6:

“What these figures clearly show is that rural counties like Tipperary have borne a disproportionate part of the burden when it came to the closing down of garda stations.

The Minister has confirmed to me that the purpose of these closures was to allow front line Gardaí to be managed and deployed with greater mobility, greater flexibility and in a more focused fashion, particularly with regard to targeted police operations.

That has not happened. Instead we find ourselves in a situation where Tipperary where there has been an almost two thirds reduction in the number of Probationer Garda for Co. Tipperary from 2017-2018.

Indeed, I find it absolutely astonishing that from 2015 to 2018, Tipperary was allocated only 48 Probationer Garda from a total of 2146.

When you out these two things together then the situation does not bode well in terms of the sheer availability of garda numbers to police and protect our communities.

What is even more galling is that at the end of his reply to me on the Garda Station closures, the Minister said; “It should be noted that the number of Garda stations in Ireland compares favourably with similar jurisdictions including Scotland.”

This is cold comfort to those farms and families who still feel under siege in their own villages and homes,” concluded Deputy McGrath.