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'Don't ask don't tell policy' at Garda Síochána

Management policy at the Garda Síochána towards gays is akin to the now defunct US Army approach of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’, according to a new study by academics at DCU

President Higgins hosts delegates from the 6th European Gay Police Association Conference
President Higgins hosts delegates from the 6th European Gay Police Association Conference
Image: Mark Stedman/Photocall Ireland

MANAGEMENT POLICY AT the Garda Síochána is akin to the now defunct US Army approach of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’, according to a new study by academics at DCU.

Launching their report at the European Gay Police Association Conference in Dublin Castle, Dr Mel Duffy and Dr Vera Sheridan said that gay Gardaí would not have to live closeted lives if those in higher positions were to provide more institutional support.

“Strong leadership is needed for change in the institutional culture of An Garda Siochána as a whole-institution response to equality in the workplace. As a result, LGB Gardaí would not feel the need to endure half-lived, closeted lives, in the workplace, as they serve their communities” they said.

Opening the conference, which starts this morning, Minister for Justice, Equality and Defence Alan Shatter said that diversity should not merely be accepted but celebrated, especially now that we lived in an open society.

“Our pride in the professionalism and operational capability of our police force must be mirrored by our pride in all members of the Force and the manner in which each member treats and interacts with their colleagues in the Force. I know this will be an uphill battle for some of you were your country may not recognise and accept Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender employees.”

LGBT in the workplace: online toolkit launched to help employers >

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