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”.
“Any doubts about the strength of local concerns were dispelled when we collected over 400 signatures on a petition in the space of a few days” said James. “However these closures are a government decision and whilst we oppose them, they remain outside our control – how we respond to them however is in our control and I am satisfied we have made positive progress in playing the hand we’ve been dealt.”
The first of the public meetings saw Fianna Fáil Justice Spokesman Niall Collins TD outline party protest to the closures nationally and the second public meeting saw Superintendent Pat Mangan from Naas Station offer Garda guidance on the new arrangements. “The Superintendent outlined measures which he will oversee to ensure a continued policing presence in the area and I want to thank him for his attendance on the night and engagement with the community” said James. “I would also like to thank Fr. Willie and Kill parish for very kindly making available a location where we have organised a weekly Garda clinic can be held for people to get forms signed or have access to a local Garda on a scheduled basis.”
A community alert is now being established also and a committee now begins the work of setting up the scheme. The committee will be seeking input from each of the estates and townlands to a achieve coverage across the village so as to maximise efficiency of the scheme.
A final meeting took place in the Kilteel Inn with speakers from community alert schemes elsewhere and an alert scheme is to be setup covering Kilteel / Eadestown / Rathmore following on from that meeting also.
Any interested parties are invited to contact James Lawless on 086 834 8869 to find out more information or to join up to the alert schemes in either locations.