Cahill Sharply Critical Of Garda Structure Reforms

Tipperary TD Jackie Cahill. Pic: Jackie Cahill/Facebook.

Public safety and rural crime in Tipperary was raised in the Dáil this morning by Tipperary TD Jackie Cahill.

The Dáil heard that there is widespread concern across the county about the current levels of criminal activity.

Deputy Cahill was sharply critical of the reform of Garda Structures that will leave County Tipperary with no Chief Superintendent – this he said will lead to a lower allocation of resources to the county.

He called for the decision to be revisited and revealed that the Chief Superintendent has moved from Thurles in recent days and has been relocated to Limerick.

Deputy Cahill also wants reform of Trespass laws in the county as Garda say their powers are limited at present in this regard.

The Dáil heard that people are trespassing, under a variety of pretexts, to gather information which Deputy Cahill says is definitely contributing to the crime spree.

The Dáil heard about a woman so afraid in her home now that she is sleeping in an outhouse.

As with Deputy McGrath last night the Government response was “that community safety is not solely the responsibility of An Garda Síochána or the Department of Justice but is a whole-of-Government responsibility.

Extra funding of €100M for Garda overtime and the recruitment of new Garda was cited as examples of government action. Government response also cited plans for the recruitment of up to 1,000 new Garda trainees and more than 400 civilian staff in 2023.

Garda data shows that since the winter anti-crime Operation Thor was first introduced in 2015, burglary and related offences have steadily declined and figures show that there has been a 36% reduction in the rate of such offences when compared to pre-Covid levels in 2019.

To date this year, there have been 6,100 residential burglaries reported, compared to 10,297 during the same period in 2019.”

The CSO does not accept the accuracy of Garda Statistics.

Additional measures in response from the government include the planned nationwide rollout of a new format for community safety organisation in January 2024 that will include reps from youth, new communities, voluntary sector and State agencies such as An Garda Síochána, the HSE, Tusla and others to replace the traditional Joint Policing Committee.

The Department also published a rural safety plan, which is available on

Deputy Cahill concluded by adding that Rural Crime is not the only issue in Tipperary.

He told the Dáil there are also problems with anti-social behaviour in town centres, including Ballina, Nenagh and Clonmel and also widespread and increasing use of illegal drugs which Deputy Cahill described as “the greatest challenge facing modern society.”