210. Deputy Thomas Pringle asked the Minister for Justice the funding for the Garda youth diversion programme in each of the years 2007 to 2021, in tabular form. [30134/21]
Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality (Deputy James Browne): I am very conscious of how the impact of crime affects the quality of life for local communities. Preventing children getting involved in criminality and diverting children away from it when they have already become involved is one of the priorities for me as Minister for State in the Department of Justice. Both the Programme for Government and the Justice Plan 2021 contain a number of commitments with regard to tackling crime.
The Garda Diversion Programme, strictly speaking, does not include the Garda Youth Diversion Projects (GYDPs). The Diversion Programme is the work that members of An Garda Síochána do to assess cases, give cautions and provide supervision in the community. These activities are all part of the Budgetary Vote for An Garda Síochána.
The Garda Diversion Programme is supported by a network of 105 Garda Youth Diversion Projects (GYDPs) nationwide. GYDPs are community-based multi-agency crime prevention initiatives, which seek to divert young people from crime/anti-social behaviour and to support wider preventative work within the community and with families at risk. They are primarily targeted at 12-17 year old “at risk” youths in communities where a specific need has been identified. The work of the GYDPs will be strengthened over the coming years in line with the recently published Youth Justice Strategy 2021-2027.
Garda Youth Diversion Projects are funded from both Exchequer and Dormant Accounts funding, with around half of the funding typically being recouped from the European Social Fund.
Details of the funding allocation provided for Garda youth diversion projects in 2007 is not available, however funding for GYPDs from 2008 to date in 2021 is laid out in the table below. These costs relate to salary payments, general overheads and other expenses.
Under the European Social Fund 2014-2020 Operating Programme, we have recouped €31.9m in funding to date in this cycle. A further claim of €14.1m is at the final verification stages under the Programme.