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Garda commissioner Drew Harris speaking to the media in the Phoenix Park HQ Leah Farrell/
facing the media

An Garda Síochána issue contract worth estimated €100,000 for media training

Effectively communicating via the media “is of critical importance in building and maintaining” public trust, the gardaí said.

AN GARDA SÍOCHÁNA has put out to tender a contract worth an estimated €100,000 for “media skills training”.

They want members trained in the “skills to be able to conduct media interviews” and for dealing “with difficult and sustained questioning”. 

The aim of the contract is to initially train 30-40 personnel within An Garda Síochána in the first year, with increased numbers in subsequent years.

An Garda Síochána previously paid €113,688 to PR firm Communications Clinic over two-and-a-half years for media training up to March 2017. This followed a procurement process initiated by the gardaí.

In this new invitation to tender, An Garda Síochána said: “Telling the public via the media about how we prevent and tackle crime is of critical importance in building and maintaining that support and trust.”

It said its officers who appear in the media “must be in a position to provide clear and consistent information to the public and demonstrate their and the organisation’s professionalism, skills and expertise”.

The gardaí’s communication strategy will see a greater range of spokespeople being made available to the media from across the organisation. 

To achieve this aim, it will require a media training programme for officers and managers that will be held in Garda HQ in the Phoenix Park in Dublin or, on occasion, at the Garda College in Templemore.

Participants in the programme will perform a “number of mock radio and TV interviews based on relevant scenarios” and undertake further interviews following feedback.

From time to time, the gardaí said it will need “ongoing support” to prepare for specific interviews for which an hour rate would apply. 

The deadline to respond to the tender contract – valid for one year – is 19 February.

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