Fianna Fáil TD for Dublin Mid-West, John Curran has said that the low number of community based CCTV schemes established and funded by the Department of Justice is enough evidence to undertake a review of the scheme and determine how to make it more accessible to communities.
Despite €1 million in funding allocated for investment in community CCTV schemes nationwide, information received by the Deputy this month indicates that just 4 applications have been approved to date.
Commenting on the issue, Deputy Curran said, “Community based CCTV schemes, the introduction of which was secured by Fianna Fáil under the Confidence and Supply Arrangement, have the potential to be hugely valuable in deterring any increase in anti-social behaviour or criminality in an area.
“Community groups are often volunteer led and simply don’t have the capacity to go through the tedious grant application process or the time afterwards to maintain these complex systems.
“I would like to see a more proactive information campaign undertaken by the Department to encourage groups to apply. It’s my suspicion that the complicated application process is deterring many groups from availing of the scheme and should be reviewed with a focus on training and information.
He concluded, “As we know, Garda numbers in local Garda stations are not seeing any increases and in many of my own local Garda Stations in Dublin Mid West, Garda numbers have decreased over the past five years. Our community depends on Gardaí to feel safe in their communities and to uphold the rule of law but a CCTV system could go some way towards assisting with the identification of offenders, and deterring criminals in the first instance.”