Belfast Telegraph

Justice Minister launches Garda recruitment drive

Changes to this year’s recruitment process have been made in a bid to encourage more diversity within the force.

The Justice Minister has launched a new recruitment drive for the Garda (Niall Carson/PA)
The Justice Minister has launched a new recruitment drive for the Garda (Niall Carson/PA)

The Justice Minister has launched a new recruitment campaign for the Garda.

Charlie Flanagan said the drive was part of the government’s plans to increase numbers in the force and he encouraged members of minority communities in particular to consider applying.

Changes to this year’s recruitment process have been made in a bid to encourage more diversity within the force.

Alterations to the Garda uniform will be facilitated on request to accommodate religious and ethnic diversity.

We have been attracting high calibre people to the organisation, but it is vital in a time of near full employment that this continues. Drew Harris

It means members of the Sikh community will be able to wear a turban with their uniform and members of the Muslim community will be able to wear a hijab.

Mr Flanagan said the mission of the Garda was to protect and serve and he urged all those interested in supporting that mission to consider applying.

“A career as a Garda is hugely rewarding,” Mr Flanagan said.

“It’s one of public service where, every day, members make a vital contribution to the safety and well-being of their communities all across the country.”

At present there are more than 14,100 members in the force.

The Government has committed to grow the numbers to 15,000 by 2021.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris welcomed the new competition.

“We have been attracting high calibre people to the organisation, but it is vital in a time of near full employment that this continues,” he said.

“We also know that we need to become a much more diverse organisation so that we properly reflect the society we serve. That is why our campaign is focusing on people who might not have previously considered a career as a Garda member.

“They have the skills we need for a policing role, but they might not have thought they could transfer those to being a Garda.”

Mr Flanagan said it was important for the Garda to reflect the increasing diversity of Irish life.

Mr Harris said: “We hope that this will encourage people from minority communities to join An Garda Siochana.

“We want to demonstrate to them that An Garda Siochana is an inclusive employer that is serious about becoming more diverse.”

Successful candidates are required to undergo a two-year training programme leading to a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Policing.

The programme includes a 34-week block of tuition at the Garda College in Templemore, Co Tipperary, as well as a 34-week block of on-the-job learning.

Garda trainees receive an allowance of 184 euro per week as well as accommodation and food at the college.

The pay scale for gardai starts at 30,296 euro per annum rising to 48,754 euro per annum after eight years.

All applications must be made through publicjobs.ie. The closing date for applications is Wednesday April 24.

PA

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