An Garda Síochána to introduce 325 new recruits to help battle Covid-19

Michaela O'Dea

Reporter:

Michaela O'Dea

An Garda Síochána have announced new measures in relation to the delay phase of Covid-19.

 Following the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar's announcement yesterday in relation to measures to delay Covid-19, An Garda Síochána is putting in place a number of measures to maximise their operational availability and support other vital public services.

These include:

- A contingency roster will go into effect from Monday March 16, 2020.
 
- Annual leave for personnel will be restricted to no more than 5% of a Divisional/Bureau workforce at any given time with effect from March 13, 2020.

- Approximately 325 Garda students in the Garda College will be attested as Garda members next week and allocated to Garda stations nationally in the coming weeks .

- Garda members working as tutors/instructors in the Garda College will be deployed to operational duties or essential training services.

- Training in the Garda College will be deferred until further notice expect for specialist training activity, this includes training in firearms, driver, armed support.

- In order to enhance community support, 210 additional vehicles have been hired.

- Members of An Garda Síochána who were scheduled to avail of the severance package on April 1, 2020 have been invited to defer their retirement for three months.

- Subject to Government approval, Garda members of all ranks who have reached the compulsory retirement age can apply to remain in employment for a further 12 months subject to terms and conditions. Any Garda member who is required to retire on age ground on or before 1st June 2020 and wishes to remain in service can forward an application for the consideration of the Commissioner.

- The Commissioner has designated the ongoing situation as an "exceptional event” in accordance with the Working Time Agreement.

- Non-essential foreign travel will not be undertaken. All unnecessary large gatherings will be restricted. Only essential meetings in accordance with Government guidelines will take place with attendance limited to essential personnel only.