Around the country, there is great concern over the closure of 95 Garda stations, the vast majority being in rural areas such as Stradbally, Ballyduff Upper, Kill and Grangemockler. What’s been described as “consolidation” by the Department of Justice now means that officers must police even wider areas in their squad cars.
Those who have, as they’ve phrased it, attempted to quell some of the hysterical claims about the station closures have pointed out that many of the closed stations were only open for a handful of hours during the week. They believe that communities are better served from having officers out and about as opposed to being behind a station desk.
Perhaps there’s a grain of truth there, but we know from our own experience that An Garda Síochána is over-stretched as they attempt to cope with rising crime levels while responding to an increasingly concerned public.