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Question

280. Deputy Michael McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of gardaí currently assigned to each station in the Togher Garda district in County Cork. [7213/18]

Answer

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): As the Deputy will appreciate, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for the distribution of resources, including personnel, among the various Garda Divisions and I, as Minister, have no direct role in the matter. Garda management keeps this distribution of resources under continual review in the context of crime trends and policing priorities so as to ensure that the optimum use is made of these resources.
The Deputy will be aware the Togher Garda District forms part of the Cork City Division. I am informed by the Commissioner that the strength of the Cork City Division on 31 December 2017 was 666, of whom 118 were attached to the Togher District.  There are also 42 Garda Reserves and 70 Garda civilian staff attached to the Cork City Division. When appropriate, the work of local Gardaí is supported by a number of Garda national units such as the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the Armed Support Units, the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau and the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau.
This Government is committed to ensuring a strong and visible police presence throughout the country in order to maintain and strengthen community engagement, provide reassurance to citizens and to deter crime.  To achieve this the Government has put in place a plan for an overall Garda workforce of 21,000 personnel by 2021 comprising 15,000 Garda members, 2,000 Reserve members and 4,000 civilians. We are making real, tangible progress on achieving this goal.
I am informed by the Commissioner that since the reopening of the Garda College in September 2014, just under 1,600 recruits have attested as members of An Garda Síochána and have been assigned to mainstream duties nationwide, of whom 38 have been assigned to the Cork City Division of whom 10 were assigned to Togher Garda Station.  I am pleased to say that Garda numbers, taking account of retirements, increased to 13,551 at the end of 2017 - a net increase of over 600 since the end of 2016.
I am also pleased that funding is in place to maintain this high level of investment in the Garda workforce to ensure that the vision of an overall workforce of 21,000 by 2021 remains on track.  This year a further 800 new Garda Recruits will enter the Garda College.  Also 800 Garda trainees are scheduled to attest during the year which will see Garda numbers, taking account of projected retirements, reach 14,000 by the end of 2018.
In addition, a further 500 civilians will also be recruited to fill critical skills gaps across the organisation and to facilitate the redeployment of Gardaí from administrative and technical duties to front-line operational duties. There are plans to strengthen the Garda Reserve with new Reserves expected to commence training in 2018.
This focus on investment in personnel is critical. The moratorium on recruitment introduced in 2010 resulted in a significant reduction in the strength of An Garda Síochána. We are now rebuilding the organisation and providing the Commissioner with the resources needed to deploy increasing numbers of Gardaí across every Division, including the Cork City Division.
For the Deputy’s information I have set out in tabular form the number of Gardaí attached to each station in the Togher Garda District as of 31 December 2017.

- TOGHER  DISTRICT 31 DECEMBER  2017
Bishopstown 19
Carrigaline 20
Crosshaven 2
Douglas 19
Passage West 2
Togher 56
TOTAL 118