The new National Rural Safety Forum will greatly reduce the opportunity for crime in our communities, the chair of the Oireachtas Agriculture Committee has said.
Fine Gael TD Pat Deering said: “This is an important day for rural Ireland and demonstrates An Garda Síochána’s focus on the principle of Community Safety.
“The National Rural Safety Forum was established with four key objectives: Community Reassurance; Information Sharing & Communication Network; Increased Community Engagement and Crime Prevention & Crime Opportunity Reduction.
“It consists of representatives from a wide range of State and Community organisations including An Garda Síochána, the Irish Farmers Association, Muintir na Tire, Age Friendly Ireland, Foroige, The GAA, the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers Association, the Irish Country Women’s Association, the City and County Management Association, Active Retirement Ireland, the National Transport Authority, Macra na Feirme, Neighbourhood Watch, ESB Networks, the Department of Justice & Equality and the Department of Community and Rural Affairs.
“The Commission identified the crucial need for collaboration and multi-agency approaches with the following deceptively simple sounding principle – that policing and security are not for the police alone.
“The Forum will provide community reassurance, develop and utilize a nation-wide communications network for the distribution of crime prevention advice, increase engagement within communities and prevent and reduce the opportunity for crime.
“I am certain that the work of the forum will provide great reassurance to communities and individuals across Ireland who live in fear of crime.”
Deputy Deering concluded: “The Forum will, every quarter, distribute a crime prevention leaflet via email to over 1,000,000 homes across Ireland.
“They will also meet at least 4 times a year to discuss issues of concern to those living in rural Ireland, to develop initiatives to promote community safety and to reduce the opportunity for crime throughout the country.”