Sligo Joint Policing Committee hosted a public meeting in the Sligo Park Hotel on Thursday 10th January.
Sligo Joint Policing Committee Hosts Public Meeting
The purpose of the meeting was to enable members of the public to have their views heard on policing issues and to put questions to the committee.
Chief Superintendent Aidan Glacken outlined the issues and challenges facing the Sligo/Leitrim Division, Superintendent Raymond McMahon gave an overview of policing in Sligo, and Mike Smyth from the Garda National Protective Services Bureau made a presentation on the issues of child exploitation and human trafficking. Senior Executive Officer Sligo County Council John Moran discussed the role and objectives of the Joint Policing Committee.
Chair of the Committee Councillor Rosaleen O’Grady updated the meeting on Telesis property marking unit, which was acquired by Sligo County Council on the recommendation of the JPC. The unit works by engraving the Eircode of the property owner on to an item, which provides traceability in the event of an item being stolen and recovered.
In her welcome address, Councillor O’Grady set out the rationale for the establishment of the JPC’s; ‘The purpose of Joint Policing Committees is to provide a forum where the County Council and the senior Garda Officers responsible for policing in the county can consult, discuss and make recommendations on matters affecting policing in the county, a process that also includes the participation of local Oireachtas Members and community interests.
The Garda Síochána Act 2005 provides that one of the functions of the JPC is to “arrange and host public meetings concerning matters affecting the policing of the local authorities administrative area. It is also an opportunity for members of the public to raise questions on general policing issues.
It is a privilege to serve of Chair of this Committee. It fulfils a very important role in our community and its membership includes a broad range of interests and expertise to inform its work. In essence, JPC’s are partnerships based on a co-operative approach, focused on raising awareness and finding solutions for issues impacting on the local community.
In September 2018 the Commission on the Future of Policing published its report setting out a vision and roadmap for the future of an Garda Síochána. The report advocated a new approach to policing and community safety, based on a modern and professional service that is well managed, cost effective and properly trained and equipped.
The Chair of the Commission Kathleen O’Toole identifies community relationships as the key to the delivery of an optimum level of service, and at local level Chief Superintendent Aiden Glacken and his team have been very active in establishing and maintaining excellent contacts with the community they serve.
The Sligo Joint Policing Committee has overseen a significant programme of work in recent years, and the themes and objectives prioritised at national level are reflected in the JPC’s Strategic Plan. The Committees’ Mission Statement is ‘To enhance the crime prevention and public safety work of an Garda Síochána, community groups, and Sligo County Council by adopting a collaborative approach.’
The strategic objectives identified by our committee are in the areas of crime prevention, community policing, road safety, public safety, communication and promotion. The committee has the responsibility to monitor progress on specific actions outlined in the strategy, and we publish an annual report to document progress made under each heading.’
Councillor O’Grady concluded her address by thanking the members of the pubic who attended the meeting; ‘This is an important forum, we welcome the opportunity to engage with the public, and we will continue the partnership approach which has served this committee so well.