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Saturday 20 September 2014

Parents removing pupils from school caught up in gangland feud

Published 20/01/2014 | 07:27

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Parents are taking their children out of a Dublin school amid growing concerns over a drugs feud that has led to gardai being called to the yard to protect students, it has been claimed.

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The feud, involving several families, has led some parents to remove their children from the south Dublin boys’ secondary school in case they get drawn into it.

Others fear their children could be caught in the crossfire if violence were to flare-up.

A source said teachers and the principal now fear the school may have to close as a result of the row, which has been going on for months.

“If it was the children of the people involved in the feud that were being taken out, it might make a positive difference, but it’s the parents of innocent children who have fears for their kids who are taking this action,” the source said.

“This is a serious situation and there is tension in the community over it.

“The whole thing is about a drugs turf war, with different groups claiming territory.”

DISADVANTAGED

Separately, Dublin City Council assistant manager Brendan Kenny told a meeting of former TDs and senators that gardai are “often called to protect kids in the playground” of the school.

Addressing the Irish Association of Former Parliamentarians in the Seanad chamber, Mr Kenny said cutbacks and service reductions could reverse any work that has been done in dealing with crime and anti-social behaviour in disadvantaged areas.

“I would be very worried with these cuts and reductions that things may go back, so we need to keep concentrating on it,” he told the meeting.

He added that the city council has 1,361 fewer staff than it had in December 2008.

“The risk is that we pull back from managing our housing estates and the problems will start again. Strong estate management is vital,” he said.

Mr Kenny also called for a garda unit to be specifically assigned to Dublin City Council.

“There should be just one management of estates, one management of our streets,” he said.

“The unit would include gardai, local authority staff, perhaps someone from the HSE and the social work side of things.

“Currently, they do not co-ordinate effectively.”

Mr Kenny said anti-social behaviour and aggressive begging on the streets of Dublin were on the increase.

“These problems spawn criminality, and problems are quite often allowed to fester for years,” he said.

“Kids who are involved in anti-social behaviour become the gangsters and big criminals.”

Irish Independent

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