Residents can help to curb anti-social behaviour
In response to your article on the recent riots in Rathmullen I am writing to express a greater concern beyond the matters of the local Gardai and Borough council legislation.
Although more visible enforcement measures may be one way forward in tackling this incident I believe to prevent a recurring situation it seems likely measures for building community capacity are also needed . Not only is a 'feet on the street' approach needed by our Gardai forces but also implementation of an effective framework by which local residents can liaise with officials.
Rather than merely appealing to certain individuals to come forward I think a more informal partnership should be considered to act as a more substantial channel of information and effectively address issues and concerns within the community on a regular basis.
The voice of residents of the area should be taken into account and I believe this can be done effectively through scheduled meetings and discussions between residents, Gardai and various other agencies involved in community and social work.
A deeper response is needed in order to address the underlying causes of this incident of anti-social behaviour. One such example of a way in which this issue has been overcome has been put into practice in South Clondalkin with the establishment of a forum which has proved highly effective in overcoming concerns or fears individuals may feel in communicating with Gardai.
I feel rather than merely members of the community being painted in this incident as either victims or the youths of the area as perpetrators of crimes perhaps a more substantial discussion should be taken into account in which various relevant bodies can contribute to a more efficient solution. Yours sincerely, Daire O Dowd.