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Order of Business

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Senator Darragh O'Brien

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Order of Business
Snippet Contents:

Last week I raised several law and order issues. I proposed an amendment to the Order of Business to the effect that the Minister for Justice and Equality, Deputy Alan Shatter, come into the House to make a statement on the basis that he had lost the confidence of rank and file gardaí, the GRA and the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors. This is a very serious issue. It is unprecedented that the Garda representative associations would pass motions of no confidence in the Minister. Yesterday in the basketball stadium in Tallaght over 4,500 public service workers, predominantly front-line workers, let the Government know what they felt about its disproportionate attack on front-line services. I would like the Minister to come here to explain what he proposes to do now that he has lost the confidence of An Garda Síochána. We used our Private Members' time to discuss this issue. Policing is at crisis point and I stand over what I said last week, that within a week or two there will be industrial action, about which there is no question in my mind and as gardaí have stated already. They deserve respect for the job they do, but they are not receiving due respect from the Minister. Members on the Government side may disagree that this is a very serious issue. However, I am putting forward the view of normal gardaí all over the country, which has been reinforced by the votes of rank and file gardaí in every county who have said they have no confidence in the Minister. I am again proposing an amendment to the Order of Business that the Minister come into the House to explain how he intends to rectify the fact that he has lost the confidence of rank and file gardaí.
Last week Senator Jillian van Turnhout said the Mangan report should be debated urgently.