Justice Minister Helen McEntee said the “sole focus” of the North Dublin Safety Improvement Plan was to help people in their communities “not just be safe but to feel safe”, reports RTE.
The plan, which was announced this morning by Minister McEntee and Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe, includes 51 measures to secure the area after a wave of attacks there last month.
The initiative brings together state agencies and community groups to tackle problems such as drug trafficking and anti-social behaviour.
It will commit to ensuring a strong police presence in the area and work with community groups to ensure the safety of public spaces, including areas currently used for drug trafficking.
Speaking to RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Minister McEntee said police officers will play a “huge role” but it’s not just about policing.
“It’s not just about more boots on the street – but there are clear actions in this plan for continued high visibility and continued engagement with the gardaí – the organisations on the ground, communities, businesses,” she said, reports RTE.
The Taoiseach said the new crime plan is not just about increasing police presence.
Speaking in Co Cork, Leo Varadkar said the plan was to ensure the state and other agencies work together to make communities safer.
Local authorities, the HSE and the Department of Education, among others, were involved, he said.
“The idea is to recognise that having a community, safe towns, safe streets is about the garda presence, but it’s not just about the garda presence,” Mr Varadkar said, reports RTE.
“You need the local authority working with other agencies like the HSE and, for example, Education, people all coming together to make sure that we are working together across Government and different bodies to make sure that our communities are safe,” reports RTE.
Mr Varadkar stressed that the crime rate in Ireland is “relatively low” and that Irish cities are as safe as other European or American cities.
“That is not to say that crimes don’t happen – they do happen. We need to make sure that we do everything to ensure that those crimes are prevented; if they happen that they (victims) are protected, but also to ensure that people feel safe and that sense of feeling safe and secure is very important too,” Mr Varadkar said, reports RTE.
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