Limerick among first garda divisions to implement new operating model

Fintan Walsh

Reporter:

Fintan Walsh

Email:

fintan.walsh@limerickleader.ie

Limerick among first garda divisions to implement new operating model

LIMERICK gardai will be among the first to implement the force's new operating model, which will involve an increase garda numbers, provide more autonomy an improvement in investigative services. 

The five new divisions are Limerick, Galway, Cork City, Dublin South Central, and Meath/Westmeath. 

Limerick is the only division where there are no changes in terms of catchment area as it is "already at the desired scale" for the new model, a spokesperson said. 

Before changes are made at a Divisional level, change impact assessments will be conducted at a local level to ascertain what needs to be done to enable implementation.

Commissioner Harris has also previously commented that border Divisions will remain unchanged until there is clarity on Brexit.

An Garda Síochána has committed to ensuring Superintendents will be in locations throughout a Division and not all located in the Divisional Headquarters.

An Garda Síochána has also said that every effort will be made to minimise disruption to personnel.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said: "These changes will see us deliver a more responsive, more efficient and better service to local communities.

It will mean increased numbers of Gardaí working on the frontline, better investigations of crimes against the vulnerable such as sexual crime, and community policing teams dedicated to working with communities to identify and tackle problem crimes in their area. The quicker we can make these changes at Divisional level, the quicker we can deliver these improvements to communities.”

According to gardai, under the Garda Operating Model, Divisions will increase in size, will be operationally autonomous, and will be the key to policing delivery.

A Division will be typically made up of around 600 to 800 personnel. This will ensure each Division has the resources and skills to deliver a wider range of community policing and specialist services based on the demand in their area.

There will be better investigative services locally as Divisions will have a wider range of specialist skills and expertise such as Protective Services, Economic Crime and Cyber Crime.

Regions and divisions will have greater control over how policing is delivered, while working to a corporate framework and oversight from the centre. The focus of the centre will be on supporting regions and divisions.

The Operating Model is a key initiative being delivered by An Garda Síochána under A Policing Service for the Future.