Chronic garda shortages in Dublin create “no-go areas” in city centre - Andrews

Published on: 29 April 2024

The chronic shortage of gardaí in Dublin has created a sense that there are now “no-go areas” in the city centre for families, commuters and tourists, according to Dublin MEP Barry Andrews.

The Fianna Fáil MEP has teamed up with the party’s Justice Spokesperson Jim O’Callaghan TD to host a series of public meetings on crime and safety in the capital this coming week.

“We cannot continue to tolerate a situation where the people who live and work in Dublin don’t feel safe walking around our city centre; where threats and intimidation on public transport are far too common; where business owners and retailers can’t operate without doubling down on private security; where tourists who visit our beautiful city are all too often met with scenes of drug taking, low level crime and antisocial behaviour,” said MEP Andrews.

“A sense of urgency is needed from the Government to tackle this.  Dublin is a thriving capital city.  Our strong economy and full-employment levels are in no small part thanks to Foreign Direct Investment and Tourism. We risk losing our attractiveness unless we get a handle on the city’s growing safety issue very quickly.

“Garda retirement is currently outstripping garda recruitment. Dublin is being policed on overtime.  Without a visible, widespread and around-the-clock garda presence on our streets, these problems will deepen.  In addition to street safety, we need a dedicated transport police to return a sense of safety to bus and rail journeys.  Without enough gardaí on the streets, there clearly are not enough gardaí to spare for the bus and rail network. We need to look outside the box to come up with solutions that we can start to implement right now.

“Every single community I go into in Dublin, every event I attend, people raise these safety concerns with me.  As a Dubliner, I too am angry and sad that people don’t feel comfortable and safe in large parts of our city anymore. That is why my colleague, Fianna Fáil Justice Spokesperson Jim O’Callaghan, and I have decided to create a forum to allow people to share their experiences and to discuss solutions to this festering problem.”