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File image of a Garda patrolling in Dublin.
File image of a Garda patrolling in Dublin.
Image: Shutterstock/abd

Garda promotions to be handled by Public Appointments Service under new regulations

Promotions to the ranks of sergeant and inspector had previously been managed internally.
Jul 19th 2021, 11:27 AM 20,148 22

THE PUBLIC APPOINTMENTS SERVICE is to take over the promotions process within the Garda, paving the way for the promotions of hundreds of members within the force. 

Promotions to the ranks of sergeant and inspector had been managed internally before now. 

Under new regulations introduced by Minister for Justice Heather Humphreys, the process is to be significantly reformed and brought under the remit of the Public Appointments Service, which handles recruitment for the civil service and other public bodies.

In a statement, the Department of Justice said: “The new process will be fair, modern and transparent and in line with the findings of the cultural audit undertaken by An Garda Síochána in 2018.”

There are presently 266 vacancies at the rank of sergeant, and the new regulations will allow these new promotions to begin later this year.

There are also 57 vacant inspector positions, recruitment for which will begin in early 2022. 

“The Government is committed to ongoing recruitment into An Garda Síochána as well as allowing for promotional opportunities within the service. Together, these moves will both strengthen An Garda Síochána with new recruits and increase supervision and mentoring within the organisation,” Minister Humphreys said. 

Last year, the department sanctioned an increase in the number of sergeants and inspectors to create additional supervisory positions within the force. 

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The new structure will provide for up to 2,210 sergeants and 482 inspectors. 

Many of these inspector positions will facilitate the rollout of the new Garda operating model, which was announced earlier this year. 

Other changes introduced in the latest regulations include the introduction of a period of probation following promotions and a five-year time limit in which promotion candidates must have passed their exams.

The Garda Promotion Advisory Council is to be dissolved, and academic exemptions for some parts of promotional exams will be abolished.

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Jane Moore

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