9. Deputy Eugene Murphy asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of gardaí and reservists in each Garda station in counties Roscommon and Galway; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [42431/18]
Deputy Charles Flanagan: As the Deputy is aware, it is the Garda Commissioner who is responsible for the distribution of Garda personnel among the various 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 the resources. I do not politically interfere in policing matters or direct the Commissioner where to deploy resources. Notwithstanding the Commissioner’s responsibility, I have provided the Deputy with the detailed information he requested in tabular form.
I am informed by the Commissioner that the strength of the Roscommon-Longford and Galway divisions on 31 August 2018, the latest date for which information is readily available, was 312 and 587, respectively. There are six Garda reservists and 33 Garda civilian staff attached to the Roscommon-Longford division and 29 Garda reservists and 67 Garda civilian staff attached to the Galway division. When necessary, the work of local gardaí is supported by Garda national units such as the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the armed support unit, the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau and the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau.
I take the opportunity to again confirm the Government’s firm commitment to supporting An Garda Síochána and ensuring it is appropriately resourced. Garda recruitment ceased from 2010 to 2014. The new recruits attested as members of An Garda Síochána have been assigned to mainstream duties, with 18 assigned to the Roscommon-Longford division and 31 to the Galway division. I am pleased that the strength of An Garda Síochána will reach over 14,000 members by the end of 2018 for the first time in many years. I strongly welcome the funding provided in budget 2019 for the recruitment of up to 800 Garda recruits next year, along with necessary civilian Garda staff.