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Minister O’Gorman Meets with Garda Commissioner Drew Harris

Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderic O’Gorman, T.D., today met with Garda Commissioner Drew Harris to discuss community policing and the steps being taken by An Garda Síochána to engage with Ireland’s Black and Mixed Race Communities following the tragic death of George Nkencho last December.

Speaking following the meeting, Minister O’Gorman said, “I was very pleased to meet with Commissioner Harris today. We discussed a number of issues relating to community policing, including the steps being taken by the Commissioner to ensure that respect for diversity is at the heart of day-to-day policing in all our communities.”

“Following the tragic death of George Nkencho, I asked Commissioner Harris about the specific efforts that are being made to improve relations between Gardaí and the Black and Mixed Race Communities in the Dublin 15 area in the aftermath of this incident.”

“We also discussed the urgency of tackling racism and the work of An Garda Síochána to protect victims of racism and encourage people to report racist incidents to the Gardaí.”

“Commissioner Harris briefed me on progress in implementing the Garda Diversity and Integration Strategy, on work to enhance Garda diversity and anti-bias training programmes and to further develop positive relationships between An Garda Síochána and members of Ireland’s ethnic minority communities. I welcome these initiatives and thank Commissioner Harris for his commitment to tackling racism and promoting inclusion.”

Commenting following this afternoon’s meeting, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris said, “as part of the ongoing implementation of An Garda Síochána’s Diversity and Integration Strategy 2019 -2021, the Garda National Diversity and Integration Unit (GNDIU) is fulfilling our commitment to proactively and respectfully engage with all minority groups and those from diverse backgrounds.”

“Our network of 310 Garda Diversity Officers (GDOs) nationwide are responsible for supporting diversity and cultural awareness in each Division, are working hard to build trust with under-represented and minority communities.

“An Garda Síochána is dedicated to protecting all minorities in our increasingly diverse society. Together with community leaders, NGOs, CSOs and support groups, we encourage anyone affected to report hate crime and feel reassured that they will be treated with the utmost respect and professionalism.”


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