The role of the Policing Division
The Policing Division in the Department is responsible for the development of policy towards and oversees the provision of resources to the Garda Síochána. The division is effectively the primary link between the Minister for Justice and Equality and the Garda Síochána on these matters.
The Policing Division also represents the Minister in discussions with other agencies and bodies on policing related matters such as legal actions, EU matters, governance and the provision of resources generally.
The Division receives reports from the Garda Síochána on matters relating to the application and use of Garda resources, the achievement of its objectives and matters relating to performance and governance of the force. These reports are used to allow the Minister to carry out her statutory and constitutional duties vis-à-vis the Government and Oireachtas (legislature).
Apart from general administrative duties dealing with correspondence to the Minster, Freedom of Information requests, parliamentary questions and other parliamentary business, the staff in the Division also deals with:
- development of relevant legislation relating to the Garda Síochána
- overseeing the provision of various resources such as vehicles, equipment etc and of course all personnel (sworn or otherwise) in the organisation;
- overseeing the reform programme for the Garda Síochána
- Compensation for Gardaí who are maliciously injured
- liaison with and support to the Policing Authority, the Garda Inspectorate and Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) and Forensic Science Ireland
- representing the Minster at industrial relations fora involving the Garda representative associations.
The current primary workload includes:
- Developing legislation establishing the Independent Policing Authority and supporting the establishment process
- Garda recruitment
- Overseeing the implementation of the Garda reform programme
- Managing the The Independent Review Mechanism which is examining complaints against the Garda Síochána
- Acting as key liaison for The MacLochlainn Commission of Investigation
- Acting as key liaison for The O' Higgins Commission of Investigation
Current commissions of investigation and other inquiries
The Minister for Justice and Equality is responsible for overseeing administrative matters relating to two commissions of investigation which have been established under the Commissions of investigation Act 2004: