“A new Garda Youth Diversion Programme in Athy will help to prevent and reduce crime among youths”, says Fine Gael TD for Kildare South, Martin Heydon.

“The Minister for Justice, Frances Fitzgerald, has announced that a new Garda Youth Diversion Project (GYDP) will commence operations in Athy. This is one of seven new GYDPs which will receive €1.2 million from the Dormant Accounts Fund.

“There has been significant progress made in tackling youth crime in recent years. However crime prevention and crime reduction efforts such as the Garda Youth Diversion Projects are needed in areas with a high level of youth crime and in areas where an increase in the youth population raises the risks of increasing levels of youth crime.

“A new pilot mentoring service for young people coming to the attention of An Garda Síochána will also be launched and is to receive €500,000 in funding. For the initial pilot phase, mentoring services will be made available to forty two Garda Youth Diversion Projects. The Minister indicated that it is intended to expand the pilot during the year.

“The Government is committed to preventing and reducing youth crime. These new initiatives will support An Garda Síochána in the excellent work that they do with young people who are at risk of, or who become involved in, criminal or anti-social behaviour.
“Supporting the Gardaí in the valuable work that they do in our communities is a priority for this Government. Templemore has been reopened, after it was closed by Fianna Fáil and the recruitment of 1,150 new Gardaí is now underway.
“Over the next five years €46 million will be invested in Garda vehicles; €18 million will be directed towards the refurbishment of Garda stations and €205 million will be invested in new technology and systems for An Garda Síochána. This is part of an unprecedented allocation of €875 million in capital funding in the Justice sector.

“Garda reform is now underway and will continue under this Government, if re-elected. As more jobs are added to the economy, more money will become available to invest in vital services like An Garda Síochána.”