A new community safety partnership is being considered for Longford, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Senator Micheál Carrigy said the partnership would bring together local residents, community representatives – including youth, new communities and the voluntary sector – business and education representatives, public services in the area – including HSE, Tusla, AGS, and the local authority – and local councillors.
Senator Carrigy said: “As part of efforts to develop the Policing and Community Safety Bill, which will give effect to changes proposed by the Commission on the Future of Policing in Ireland, my Fine Gael colleague, Minister for Justice Helen McEntee has begun work on a new Community Safety Policy.
“This policy proposes new Community Safety Partnerships at local authority level and these will be piloted in a number of locations first, including here in Longford.
“It is envisaged that these partnerships be responsible for developing a tailored and prioritised local community safety plan in conjunction with both community and public services.
“This will help the community to understand where public services are concentrated and highlight issues of concern.
“As residents are central to identifying problems and solutions for their community, the partnerships will have a 51/49 per cent split in favour of local residents and community representatives on the committee.
“The partnership will be supported by a dedicated community safety team, employed by the local authority, working on community safety throughout the year and supporting the work of the Safety Partnership.”
Senator Carrigy continued: “Longford County Council is under consideration as one of only three areas to be included in the initial pilot scheme, although a final decision has not yet been made.
“A final decision is expected to be made by Minister McEntee in the coming months and I will be in constant contact with the Minister on the issue.
“The pilot projects have been selected following an assessment of reported crime rates and deprivation rates.
“The three pilots will be broken down on the basis of one high population area, one intermediate population area and one low population area and Longford is recommended by Department of Justice officials to be the trial low population area,” Senator Carrigy concluded.