118. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the extent to which any drop in Garda strength, through retirement, dismissal and resignation, is being addressed by way of recruitment; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [7573/15]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The strength of the Garda Síochána on 31 December 2014, the latest date for which figures are readily available, was 12,799. There were also 1,124 Garda Reserve members, with a further 48 in training. In addition, there were over 2,000 Garda civilian staff.
I was very pleased that my colleague the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform agreed to the resumption of Garda recruitment. Last September, 100 new Garda recruits entered training at the Garda College in Templemore, the first intake of Garda recruits since May 2009. This was followed by an intake of a further 100 recruits in December and a third intake of 100 this month. This means that there are now 300 Garda students in training.
I remain in discussion with my colleague the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform on the timing of future intakes of Garda recruits.