186. Deputy Ivana Bacik asked the Minister for Justice the details of and figures for the allocation of resources to community policing in the Dublin south inner-city area. [50044/21]
Minister for Justice (Deputy Heather Humphreys): As the Deputy will be aware, the Garda Commissioner is responsible, under Section 33 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 (as amended), for the deployment of An Garda Síochána throughout the State. The Commissioner is also responsible, under Section 26 of the Act, for the management and administration of Garda business, including the recruitment and training of Garda members and staff. As Minister, I play no direct role in these independent functions.
I am assured, however, that Garda management keeps this distribution of resources under continual review in the context of policing priorities and crime trends, to ensure their optimum use. I further understand that it is a matter for the Divisional Chief Superintendent to determine the optimum distribution of duties among the personnel available to him or her, having regard to the profile of each area within the Division and its specific needs.
To date, the official categorisation as a Community Garda has simply referred to those exclusively assigned to building relationships with local communities and civil society including giving talks to schools, community groups and others. However, it is important to note that community policing is at the heart of An Garda Síochána and all Gardaí have a role to play in community policing in carrying out their duties. Indeed, this is fundamental to the new Garda Operating Model recommended by the Commission on the Future of Policing in Ireland and currently being rolled out under 'A Policing Service for Our Future', the Government's implementation plan for the Commission's recommendations.
For the Deputy's information, the area referred to is covered by the Dublin Metropolitan Region (DMR) South Central (SC) Division. As of 30 September 2021, the latest date for when figures are available, there were 58 members assigned as Community Gardaí in DMR SC, compared to 28 Community Gardaí the end of 2018, an increase of 30 members or 51.72%.
The allocation at 30 September 2021 is broken down by rank and station in the following table for the Deputy's reference.