Taoiseach commits to additional Garda resources for Louth

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he will look at making additional Garda resources available in Louth and across the country in the next Budget.

Mr Varadkar made the comments in the Dáil yesterday after local TD Gerry Adams raised the issue of insufficient Garda resources in Louth.

In a statement the Sinn Féin deputy asked the Taoiseach if he would commit additional funding to An Garda Síochána in the next Budget.

Adams said: “In the Programme for Government it states that the government will prioritise the prevention and reduction of crime by providing investment in An Garda Síochána.

“Last week I attended a public meeting of the Mid Louth Joint Policing Committee to discuss the drugs crisis and threats against a local family.

“Christy Mangan, the Chief Superintendent of the Louth Division told us bluntly that Louth doesn’t have enough Gardaí.

“He told us that he did not have enough Gardaí to secure a crime scene recently.

“He says he is also unable to open some stations, like Ardee, as often as he would like.

“The Chief Superintendent also said that there are not enough resources for the support services for drug addiction, including mental health services.

“He warned that if we fail to tackle the drug crisis ‘we will lose a generation of our young people.’

Deputy Adams pressed: “Negotiations around the next budget will commence shortly. Will the Taoiseach commit to providing a significant increase in additional Gardaí and financial budgets in the next financial year? And will he commit to standing shoulder to shoulder with citizens making a stand for themselves and the rest of us”.

In response to Deputy Adams the Taoiseach said: “The job of government is to provide additional resources for the Gardaí … There will always be a need for additional resources and there will be additional resources in the next budget to the extent that we can afford it.”