Fine Gael Rules Out Reopening of Garda Stations in Kildare

garda numbers kildare james lawlessComments made by Minister for Justice Francis Fitzgerald are unacceptable after she has completely ruled out the reopening of rural Garda stations closed by Fine Gael and Labour over the last five years. The closure of rural Garda stations in Kildare, coupled with cutbacks to Garda resources, has coincided with a spike in rural crime in the county. This is something I’ve highlighted over the past 5 years on numerous occasions.

It’s astonishing to see the Justice Minister completely rule out any reopening of rural Garda stations closed by Fine Gael and Labour over the last five years. These station closures have had a significant negative impact on the operational capability of the Gardai. It has removed Gardai from many communities across Ireland and has made it easier for criminals to target homes and businesses in rural Ireland.

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Success on Garda Clinic for Kill

Following the Garda station closure earlier this year, I have been working with local Garda management to provide alternatives for local policing in Kill village and surrounds. The great news is that Superintendent Ian Lackey in Naas Garda Station has now committed to the provision of a Garda clinic in Kill to be held weekly.

The clinic will be located at the Parish Office and will be held every Tuesday from 12.30pm to 2.30pm. The clinic is on a trial basis and will be reviewed again in the new year based upon levels of activity and on demand from the community. Many thanks to Superintendent Lackey for agreeing to the clinic and further thanks to Fr. Willie and the parish for use of the room.

Garda Clinic Confirmed for Ballymore Eustace

James Lawless speaking with Noel McCarthy at a meeting in Ballymore on the Garda closures

A Garda clinic will commence in Ballymore Eustace starting on August 7th. It will be held weekly every Wednesday from 4-6 pm in the local health centre. Garda Tom is the point of contact for the clinics and can be reached on 0868582695.

The clinic has been set-up in response to local concerns following the recent closure of Ballymore Garda station.

A number of public meetings were held at the time and a clinic was one option discussed where people could still have a local facility to have forms signed, report crime, seek advice etc. Local Fianna Fáil Representative, James Lawless, has been working with Naas Garda Superintendent, Ian Lackey, to roll out these clinics and he welcomed the opening of the Ballymore clinic.

James is also working with the Superintendent to have a similar clinic established in Kill where the village also lost a Garda station this year and James expects to confirm days and times for the Kill clinic next month.

Community Alert Scheme Launched for Kill

As we all know the government shut down Kill Garda Station last winter. There was widespread concern at the time and I organised a number of meetings with senior Gardaí and other interested parties to address this. We are now at the stage of launching a local alert scheme and a first committee meeting was held in Kill last week to get the wheels turning.

Alert schemes have proven very successful all around the country and locally in South Kildare in particular has seen some very successful schemes established. The committee is looking for reps from each of the estates and rural townlands around Kill village as they begin the roll out. Please use the contact form below to get in touch with the Community Alert Rep in your area.

Sign up to Kill Community Alert:

 

Community Alert Scheme Setup at Public Meetings

Speakers at the Kill Public Meeting

Three public meetings were held in recent weeks, one in Kilteel and two in Kill, following the Garda station closure, and positive outcomes have been achieved. The meetings were organised by Fianna Fáil’s Naas Area Representative, James Lawless, to allow the community discuss the issues and explore the options.

“We have made some progress” said James “amidst concern and alarm at the outset when the village was left exposed, we have now taken steps as a community to advance measures of self-help”.

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