Cork seeking extra gardaí for high-visibility patrols ahead of Christmas

Cork seeking extra gardaí for high-visibility patrols ahead of Christmas

The HSE is to be asked to prioritise gardaí for Covid-19 booster jabs.

It follows a meeting of the Cork City Joint Policing Committee (JPC) on Monday which heard a number of gardaí in the Cork City Garda Division were not available for work either because they were sick with the virus or were isolating as a result of close contact with a confirmed case.

Exact figures weren’t provided to the meeting but it was described by the division’s head of policing, Chief Supt Tom Myers, as one of the major issues facing him at the moment.

The revelation came during a discussion on Garda numbers in the city centre, and on the need for additional Garda resources, particularly for deployment on high-visibility patrols in the city in the run-up to Christmas.

Chair of the JPC, Lord Mayor Cllr Colm Kelleher, said he had written to Garda Commissioner Drew Harris in his capacity as chair of the JPC, requesting that Cork gets additional Garda manpower.

“We all want more gardaí in Cork as a whole, and I do know that in a number of divisions across the county, there is an issue with gardaí being tied up in court, and that that’s affecting the availability of patrol cars,” he said.

He asked Chief Supt Myers if he had any indication about whether additional gardaí would be assigned to the Cork City Garda Division.

Chief Supt Myers said he had no details at the moment but he assured the JPC he “would not be found wanting” when it comes to seeking additional resources.

Unavailability of staff due to Covid-19

But he said one of the biggest issues he was facing currently is dealing with the unavailability of staff due to Covid-19.

“We have quite a number of gardaí out sick at the moment because obviously we are on the front line and we are taking a big hit at t

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