New figures show a steady if modest fall in garda numbers across Louth

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New figures revealed this week show a steady decline in garda numbers in County Louth.

While falls have been modest, some towns have lost out, while others have benefitted in terms of garda numbers.

Since the total number of gardaí has dropped from 314 in 2010 to 286 in 2013.

However, in Dundalk numbers have remained steady at 120 during that period, having risen in 2010 from 2009, before falling again.

Hackballscross had the biggest decline, going from 10 to 5 gardaí, with Blackrock and Omeath also losing one garda over that period.

However there were more gardaí in Carlingford, Castlebellingham and Dunleer.

Sinn Fein Louth TD Gerry Adams has said that the decrease in garda numbers in County Louth is a cause for concern.

“Along with councillors Edel Corrigan and Jim Loughran I met with senior gardai in Dundalk two weeks ago on January 31st.

“We had a positive meeting covering a range of issues of importance to citizens in county Louth and the border region. The discussion covered garda strategy in the region and available garda strength and resources. We also discussed the increase in the number of burglaries, drug related crimes, cross border policing arrangements, community safety policing and the murder of detective garda Adrian Donohoe.

“Following on from this conversation I submitted fifteen parliamentary questions seeking information from the Minister for Justice in respect to garda strength on the ground in Louth .

“The Minister’s reply is a cause for considerable concern in that it shows garda numbers in Louth have fallen from a high in 2010 of 314 gardaí to a low in 2013 of 286.”

“In the same period the number of gardaí available in the urban areas of Dundalk and Drogheda fell from 133 to 120 and from 100 to 93 respectively.”

Deputy Adam said that there is widespread concern that garda strength in Louth has been operating at below acceptable levels.

“What we need to see is a fully-resourced garda plan for Louth which includes greater garda visibility and an increase in community-based gardaí.”


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