Thursday 17 October 2019

Gardai warned not to drink on the job at New York St Patrick's Day parade

Gardai have been told not to drink while wearing uniforms
Gardai have been told not to drink while wearing uniforms

Mícheál Ó Scannáil

Gardaí have been issued with a directive to stay sober while partaking in St. Patrick’s Day festivities in New York, breaking a long-time tradition.

One of the traditional sights of the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parade in the world, in New York City, is that of around 120 uniformed members of the Gardaí marching.

The tradition doesn’t stop at the streets however. One of the perks of the job for those selected to represent our legal force is a custom of the celebrations making their way off the tarmac and into one of New York’s many  bars.

This year however, gardaí have been issued with a directive from Garda Headquarters not to consume any alcohol while representing in the uniform of the Gardaí.

Gardaí lucky enough to be selected to march in New York have been ordered to return to their hotel rooms and change out of their uniforms before any alcohol is consumed.

Garda Commissioner Drew Harris, who is in America on other business, will take a break to lead the gardaí as they march through Fifth Avenue in front of an estimated crowd of up to two million spectators.

This is the first year where garda participants have been asked not to drink while in uniform.

A garda spokesperson said that gardaí are expected to represent the organisation appropriately.

“Members of An Garda Síochána should behave in an appropriate manner while in uniform as they are representing the organisation and the country while abroad,” she said.

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