The surge in burglaries in the Northern Garda Region this year emphasises the need to protect community garda resources, claims a Cavan Fianna Fáil TD.
According to the latest CSO crime statistics, there was an 18.3% increase in burglaries in the Northern Region, which includes Cavan and Monaghan, in the year to the end of June.
Deputy Brendan Smith has expressed serious concern at the increase and says now is not the time for the Justice Minister Alan Shatter to close and downgrade garda stations in the border region.
"There were 2,565 burglaries in this region to the end of June. That's 2,565 ordinary families and individuals in this area who had their homes or business targeted by criminals," explained Deputy Smith. "It is further evidence of the fact that ordinary people in communities across Cavan and Monaghan are being victimised by criminals every day.
"These figures again highlight the absurdity of Minister Shatter's policy of closing and downgrading garda stations across the country. The Minister has already shut down 39 garda stations this year, including Clontibret, Smithborough and Tullyvin. Now with the rate of burglaries up significantly, he is the process of planning a second round of cuts to garda stations in this region. People in isolated communities across Cavan and Monaghan are feeling increasingly vulnerable in their homes. They need the safety and reassurance of a visible garda presence in their area.
"I commend the work of the gardaí involved in Operation Fiacla, targeting criminal gangs involved in burglaries. The gardaí must be given every support necessary to protect homes and businesses in Cavan, Monaghan and across the country. I am also urging Minister Shatter to pull back from his dangerous policy of reducing the visible garda presence in our communities."