Gardaí have launched high visibility patrols, checkpoints and support activities for the vulnerable as Level Five lockdown comes into force today.
For the next six weeks, gardaí will conduct a range of measures to ensure the public complies with guidelines and regulations.
Training in the Garda College will be suspended for the next nine weeks, except for specialist training activity (firearm and armed support), to bring more personnel to the front-line.
From November 2nd, 200 garda trainees and sixty tutors/instructors will join frontline policing teams, alongside the 45 gardaí who have transferred since the start of the pandemic.
There will be over 2,500 Gardaí on duty nationwide at any one time, with the primary focus being on checkpoints and high visibility patrolling.
An extensive network of checkpoints is planned for routes around the country. There will also be high visibility community engagement patrols by Gardaí in parks, natural beauty spots, and public amenities.
While the vast majority of Gardaí will be focused on engaging with the public, gardaí say that national units in areas such as crime detection, armed support, national security, and organised crime, as well as divisional drug units, will continue to prevent and detect crime.
In particular, the Garda National Protective Services Bureau and the Divisional Protective Service Units will continue to support victims of domestic abuse under Operation Faoiseamh. Under Operation Faoiseamh, thousands of contacts have been made with victims of domestic abuse, as well as arrests and over 100 prosecutions commenced.
Speaking today, Commissioner Drew Harris said, “There was very good compliance by the public with the travel restrictions when they were in place before. It is vital that we see that high level of compliance again this time. The public health advice is clear. This will help save lives.
“In particular, we would ask people to think about their journeys and not exercise or travel outside the 5km limit unless it meets the essential criteria.
“An Garda Síochána is continuing with our graduated response based on our tradition of policing by consent.
“This is a difficult time for everybody, but if we all work together we can reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect our families, friends and neighbours.”