Fitzgerald comments prove Fine Gael is in Denial on Rural Crime – Moriarty
Fianna Fáil general election candidate in Kerry Norma Moriarty has said comments made by the Justice Minister on the closure of rural garda stations are proof that Fine Gael simply doesn’t appreciate the problem of crime in rural communities.
Fitzgerald comments prove Fine Gael is in Denial on Rural Crim...http://www.normamoriarty.com/fitzgerald-comments-prove-fine-gael-is-in-denial-on-rural-crime-moriarty/
Posted by Norma Moriarty on Saturday, January 23, 2016
“The closure of garda stations in communities across Kerry has caused a real sense of isolation and vulnerability,” said Councillor Moriarty.
“I’m really disappointed 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 closures have seriously impacted garda visibility and left communities more exposed to criminals.
“In Kerry Fine Gael and Labour have presided over the closure of garda stations in Ballylongford , Moyvane, Clochan, Camp, Fenit, Abbeydorney, Beaufort, Lauragh, Kilgarvan, Brosna, Valentia Island and Ballinskelligs. This has led to a growing sense of isolation in many communities.
“Figures from the Central Statistics Office show there were 327 burglaries recorded in the Kerry Garda Division in the first nine months of last year – that’s up 43% on the same period in 2013. Even the criminals believe Fine Gael is soft on crime.
“It is very worrying to see the Justice Minister seeking to play down the issue of rural crime. Frances Fitzgerald is denying the impact of Garda station closures on soaring crime rates and community decline and instead she reverts to Alan Shatter's discredited promises of 'smart policing'.
“Fianna Fáil has a ‘7 Point Plan’ to ensure communities can live in security and without fear. We want to tackle rural crime with initiatives to strengthen the Gardaí while making it tougher for criminal gangs to target communities. We are committed to strengthening the Garda force to at least 14,000 nationally and introducing tougher sentencing for those who are convicted of burglary offences.
“The fact is that since 139 Garda stations were closed by Fine Gael, burglaries and other crimes have soared around the country. Dismantling the community Garda infrastructure in this country was a short-sighted and dangerous decision. It saved virtually no money and removed gardaí from communities across the country. The sooner Fine Gael accepts this mistake, the sooner we can have a proper discussion about how to try and fix it.”