An Garda Síochána today announced a series of emergency measures combat the spread of the coronavirus.
Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said the measures are needed “to maximise our operational availability and support other vital public services”.
The measures include:
*A contingency roster will go into effect from next Monday;
*Annual leave for personnel will be restricted to no more than 5% of a Divisional/Bureau workforce at any given time with effect from March 13;
*Some 325 Garda students in the Garda College will be attested as Garda members next week and allocated to Garda stations nationally in the coming weeks (approximately 200 from one class, and 125 from the next class);
*Garda members working as tutors/instructors in the Garda College will be deployed to operational duties or essential training services;
*Training in the Garda College will be deferred until further notice expect for specialist training activity (firearms, driver, armed support);
*In order to enhance community support, 210 additional vehicles have been hired;
*Members of An Garda Síochána who were scheduled to avail of the severance package on 1 April 2020 have been invited to defer their retirement for three months.
*Subject to Government approval, Garda members of all ranks who have reached the compulsory retirement age can apply to remain in employment for a further 12 months subject to terms and conditions;
*The Commissioner has designated the ongoing situation as an “exceptional event” in accordance with the Working Time Agreement;
*Non-essential foreign travel will not be undertaken. All unnecessary large gatherings will be restricted. Only essential meetings in accordance with Government guidelines will take place with attendance limited to essential personnel only.