Full-time armed units
Q Garda regional support units are expected to be turned into full-time armed squads because of increased gun violence, writes Tom Brady.
The units were set up nationally to act as response squads in incidents where those involved were either armed with a weapon or presented some form of serious threat to themselves or to members of the public.
Five units were established in the five regions outside Dublin, where the duties are allocated to the Emergency Response Unit.
However, up to now they have been armed only on a part-time basis. Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan has now indicated that he is examining the possibility of the units operating in "full armed mode permanently".