337. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice the number of promotional positions within An Garda Síochána that remain vacant at present; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [30422/21]


Minister for Justice (Deputy Heather Humphreys): As the Deputy will be aware, the## Garda Commissioner is responsible by law for the management of An Garda Síochána, including personnel matters and deployment of resources.  As Minister, I have no responsibility for these matters.
To be of assistance, I am informed by the Garda authorities that the below table sets out the Ranks, the full strength as agreed under the Employment Control Framework (ECF) and the current strengths at present.

Rank ECF Current Strengths
Commissioner 1 1
Deputy Commissioner 2 2
Assistant Commissioner 9 8
Chief Superintendent 47 48
Superintendent 168 167
Inspector 482 428
Sergeant 2210 1948

The Deputy may wish to note that the Garda Commissioner keeps under review the need to fill vacancies as operationally required.  I am informed that competitions are held for promotional ranks as required in anticipation of vacancies which naturally arise as a consequence of departures due to promotions or retirements in those ranks.
The Deputy may be aware that promotion competitions for the ranks of Superintendent, Chief Superintendent and Assistant Commissioner are a matter for the Policing Authority.
I am advised by Garda authorities that there will be a competition, to be facilitated on behalf of An Garda Síochána by the Public Appointments Service (PAS), during 2021 for promotion to the rank of Sergeant and for promotion to the rank of Inspector to meet the ECF including consequential promotions at the higher ranks and retirements (age-related and other). I am informed that the vacancies above are based on the current vacancies and do not include consequential vacancies from promotion at higher ranks.
In relation to Garda Staff, An Garda Síochána are continuing to recruit and promote based on sanctioned posts and vacancies created through departures and reassignment of Garda Members to operational frontline policing. These posts are being filled in accordance with Department of Public Expenditure and Reform sequencing requirements.