A passing out ceremony for probationer Gardaí took place at the Garda College in Templemore yesterday, at which the recruitment of 140 civilians by summer 2017 was also announced.
The familiar passing out ceremony for probationer Gardaí took place at the Garda College in Templemore yesterday. 149 new Gardaí graduated from the training college. Around half of these have been allocated to stations in the six divisions of the Dublin metropolitan region.
Civilianisation of An Garda Síochána
A programme to increase civilianisation of the force which aims to free up more Gardaí to work on the streets also got underway.
140 new civilian recruits are to be taken on by the summer 2017. This initial batch will be deployed in the national specialist units, and in desk duties, enabling fully trained Gardaí to be transferred from desk jobs, back to policing duties. An estimated 50 Gardaí will be released.
A further 360 civilians are to be recruited by the end of the year, with an additional 1,500 civilian recruits over the following three years.
Head of civilian staff, Chief Administrative Officer Joe Nugent, said it was a great day for the force. The new staff will also introduce a range of skills and disciplines into the organisation, while freeing up Gardaí. Civilian recruitment will bring in a range of professional skills in areas such as IT, human resources, and finance.
The increase in civilian staff is part of an overall plan to double the number of civilians in the police force from the current level of 2,000 by a target date of 2021.
The role of civilian staff in An Garda Síochána has in the past been largely restricted to that of clerical support. There were very limited options for career progression within the organisation. However, this is changing.
Some 150 new management and supervisory positions have been created at Higher Executive Officer, Executive Officer and Staff Officer level in recent years. The development of a senior civilian management structure is also ongoing. There are a significant number of such posts now in place in areas such as HR, Finance, Procurement, IT, Housing, Transport, Crime & Policing Analysis and Internal Audit. There are now opportunities for civilian staff to build a career within An Garda Síochána across a diverse and exciting range of roles and responsibilities.
How to get a civilian job role in An Garda Síochána
Recruitment of civilian staff to An Garda Síochána is mainly carried out in association with the Public Appointments Service.
Recruitment takes the form of either general civil service open competitions or special competitions for particular professional or senior managerial positions. Details of upcoming recruitment competitions are advertised on the “Current Jobs” page of the Public Appointments Service website which is updated weekly.
Garda strength is to increase from 12,900 to 15,000 by 2021. The Garda Reserve force is also to increase to 2,000 from its current level of just under 800.
Garda recruitment resumed last year, following a five-year moratorium on all recruitment for the public sector. This year, for the first time since the moratorium was introduced in 2009, Garda numbers have increased.
The increase of 100, which brings numbers from 12,800 a year ago, to 12,900, is set to continue to rise as An Garda Síochána plan to recruit a further 800 new members with the first tranche of 200 entering by the end of March.
About 300 Gardaí leave the force annually, largely due to retirement, age or ill health. An annual intake intake of new Garda recruits is necessary to maintain and increase numbers.