Garda Síochána

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Garda Síochána
The Garda Síochána, or the ‘Guardians of Peace’ in English, is the national police service and exercises all police functions in the country. It provides the State security services and all criminal and traffic law enforcement functions are performed by it. Gardaí are (in most cases) pillars of the community. Their duties and responsibilities can vary widely but the recurring theme is serving the common good. They aim to protect the state by solving crimes and also aid everyday life by keeping the peace and ensuring an efficient traffic flow.

Education
Becoming a registered member of www. publicjobs. ie ensures you will receive notification of forthcoming recruitment drives. The basic requirements for candidates are a pass Leaving Cert and a good standard of physical fitness; and good news for those of you with a more ‘compact’ physique is that the height requirement was recently phased out.
Candidates go through a three-stage process. Stage one is three written tests – Verbal Evaluation, Analytical Reasoning and Job Simulation Exercise. Stage two includes a written communication exercise and interview. Stage three comprises a medical examination and physical ability test.

Once accepted, recruits undergo two-year training that is divided into 5 phases and lasts 2 years. Initially, students spend 22 weeks at the Garda College in Templemore followed by a period of 24 weeks spent at selected stations under the direct supervision of tutorial staff. After further training at the College, students become members of the Service and are attached to stations.

Subjects undertaken in the Garda College include Law, Social Science, Theory of Policing, Communications, Irish and Physical Training. Station-based tutelage is provided by a training sergeant and allows trainees to experience the practical application of the theories and skills they have learned.

The Work
Newly qualified Gardaí undergo a two-year probation period before becoming permanent Gardaí with full responsibilities. They usually spend at least three years on general policing duties. After that, they can apply to join one of the special units – the Serious Crimes Squad, Fraud Squad, Drugs Unit, Juvenile Liaison Section and Emergency Response Unit are just some of the options available.

The Garda Síochána are responsible for maintaining law and order, protecting life and property and ensuring the security of the state. The most obvious day-to-day task of the Gardaí is solving and preventing crimes. This can mean patrolling on the streets, taking statements from victims of crimes, interviewing witnesses and suspects, providing information to the public and the media, giving evidence in court and manning road checkpoints.

The Gardaí also have less crime solution-related responsibilities, including the provision of assistance at sports events and concerts, monitoring entry points into the state, searching for missing persons, giving directions to tourists, encouraging the community to protect their persons and property, helping to develop ethnic and religious equality, and visiting schools to teach children sensible and responsible behaviour.

The qualities potential guards should possess include diligence and dedication. A police officer should be a good communicator and have an ability to act well under pressure.

Did you know?
Interpol (International Criminal Police Organization) was founded in Austria in 1923 to facilitate cross-border police cooperation.

Further Resources

An Garda Síochána:

www.garda.ie

Dept of Justice and Law Reform:

www.justice.ie

Interpol:

www.interpol.int


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