Speaking in the Dáil this evening (Wednesday), Fine Gael Dublin Mid West Deputy, Derek Keating TD, called for airport-style security checks to be introduced at concerts which are deemed to present a risk of violence and anti-social behaviour.
“The trouble that broke out at last Saturday’s concert in the Phoenix Park must never be allowed to happen again. Widespread public order, extreme violence and disturbing levels of drinking and drug-taking cannot be tolerated.
“It is deeply shocking to think that nine people were stabbed and two young people died at what was supposed to be a social event. It is entirely unacceptable that residents and traders in the area could be left feeling terrified and intimidated by the abuse, violence and damage to their properties.
“We need an immediate change in the approach to how these types of events are organised. I welcome the comments from the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, in the Dáil today that not all concerts pose the same type of issues and that we need to ensure that if licenses are to be granted, conditions will have to fully reflect a comprehensive risk assessment that takes into account the profile of persons likely to attend any event.
“I believe these conditions should also stipulate that increased security measures need to be put in place for certain types of concerts. If, following a risk assessment, there are concerns that there may be an increased risk of violence, then airport-style security checks should be mandatory. This would make it possible to identify knives and other weapons that may otherwise be brought into the event undetected. Carrying a knife to a concert is a premeditated crime in my view.
“Swift action is needed to ensure similar outbreaks of violence do not mar other concerts planned for later in the summer. I welcome confirmation from the Minister that a complete review of events like these and how they are handled by concert promoters will be introduced shortly.”