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Sunday 17 December 2017

TD wanted female gardai to stay 'plain'

Anita Guidera

A FORMER TD once recommended to the Dail that female garda recruits should be "plain women and not targets for marriage".

Yesterday, Tanaiste Mary Coughlan prompted laughter among more than 100 female gardai who gathered in the north-west to celebrate half a century of women in An Garda Siochana.

The celebrations had been delayed delayed following the tragic death of Co Donegal-based Garda Gary McLoughlin (24) in the line of duty before Christmas.

Ms Coughlan recalled how independent Dublin TD Frank Sherwin, now deceased, told the Dail in 1959 that female recruits "should not be actually horse-faced. They should not be too good looking. They should be just plain women and not targets for marriage".

"While this seems comical to us now and shows how far we have come, it is also a reminder to ourselves of the importance of constantly challenging our own attitudes," she told the group at the Great Northern Hotel in Bundoran, Co Donegal.

Irish Independent

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