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  • Northside East

North inner city is crime central

Tuesday, 8th October, 2019 8:00am
North inner city is crime central

Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station.

North inner city is crime central

Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station.

CALLS for the reopening of Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station were made last week after the latest statistics revealed the north inner city has the highest rate of crime in the country.

An analysis of official crime figures for last year showed the Dublin Metropolitan Region (DMR) North Central had a crime rate of 2,571 offences per 10,000 population.

That’s significantly higher than Dublin’s south inner city, which had the second highest rate of 1,585 crimes per 10,000 population and Dublin West, which covers suburbs including Blanchardstown and Finglas and where the rate was just under 539 per 10,000.

DMR North Central topped the national crime table in most categories, including sexual offences, kidnapping, theft, fraud, drug offences, weapons/explosives, criminal damage, public order offences and offences against the Government/justice procedures.

But despite the worrying figures, Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station in the heart of the north inner city has been closed since 2012.

The refurbishment and reopening of the station is one of the actions set to be delivered through the Government’s North East Inner City (NEIC) Programme, which is based on the 2016 Mulvey Report. 

However, despite a long standing commitment to get the station operating again no date has yet  been set for the reopening.

The local community policing forum also closed down during the summer, much to the dismay of residents and local councillors.

TD for Dublin Central, Mary Lou McDonald (SF), last week challenged An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on the statistics and asked about the reopening of the local Garda station.

“The figures are shocking,” she said. “They show a crime rate five times the state-wide average in Dublin’s north inner city, and is it any wonder?

“We have a Garda Station on Fitzgibbon Street lying idle with no date for reopening. We have a community policing forum, the go-to place for people to engage with the Gardaí in confidence and security, shut down since June.

“Government inaction is fuelling this rise in crime and anti-social behaviour in the area and it is the people who are suffering.”

In response to Deputy McDonald, An Taoiseach admitted that he didn’t know why Fitzgibbon Street Garda Station had not been opened yet or even what the timelines were.

“The Government has committed to reopening Fitzgibbon Street Garda station,” he said.

“I do not know the reason for the delay.

“I will find out and get back to the Deputy. It will be reopened.”

An Taoiseach also vowed to look into the situation with the local community policing forum but rejected suggestions in the closed down by the Government.

“I can guarantee that if there were a Government decision to close down a community policing forum, I would know about it,” he said.

“Therefore, it was not a Government decision. I will find out who closed the forum and why.”

An Taoiseach also told Deputy McDonald that he knew the north inner city well.

“As the Deputy knows, I worked there for a period,” he said.

“I have visited on many occasions and still visit regularly. 

“The area is full of great people and good communities.

“These people do not deserve to ever be victimised by criminals in their communities.”

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here