Garda numbers on the rise after hiring ban
Garda numbers will rise to 13,500 by the end of the year as the force finally recovers from the impact of the recruitment ban imposed in 2010.
A total of 198 new gardaí passed out yesterday at the Garda College in Templemore.
Garda chief administrative officer Joe Nugent said the force lost around 300 personnel a year through retirements and resignations but the force was on target to meet its 2021 targets.
Garda Commissioner Nóirín O'Sullivan told the new members they could not have missed the almost daily coverage about failings, or perceived failings, in the service and at any stage in the last year could have decided that the organisation was not for them. "You didn't say that. You stuck with it. And that shows the guards you will be. Because it isn't going to go away, you know. The controversies are a reality.
"I keep saying that if you start turning over stones, as a reforming Garda Síochána is committed to doing, you're going to find stuff you'd prefer you didn't find," she added. "But it has to be found. It has to be faced up to. In many situations, it has to be apologised for and in all situations, it has to be learned from."