The 2017 Joint Policing Committee (JPC) Public Meeting date has been confirmed for 7.30pm on the 9th of October in The Westcourt Hotel, Drogheda.
Following a presentation by Chief Superintendent Sean Ward in The Grove Hotel in Dunleer, Chairperson of the South Louth Joint Policing Committee, Kenneth Flood, has welcomed the new community policing initiatives for Louth.
Cllr Flood said “I have long been an advocate for community policing and initiatives that can better connect the public with the Gardaí. The new sectoral policing initiative means that every area in Drogheda will have a Garda dedicated to that area. A Garda who will identify with and get to know the area, connect with the residents there and then use their knowledge on the ground to link in with the other Garda Units if and when a crime is reported”.
“This is a pilot project so if it is successful, it should be rolled out to our rural areas as well. The rural areas have suffered cuts to Garda and policing through the Government’s austerity so this is a step in the right direction to bring security and peace of mind back to our rural communities. It is in everybody’s interest to ensure its success.”
“I am hopeful that this initiative will create a new level of cooperation and personal interaction within our communities”.
Pictured at the recent policing meeting Sinn Fein Councillors Antóin Watters, Kenneth Flood, Joanna Byrne, Pearse McGeough along with TD Imelda Munster.
At the June meeting of Louth County Council, Sinn Féin Cllr. Kenneth Flood tabled a motion requesting that further meetings should be broadcast or streamed online.
Cllr. Flood said “People often complain of a disconnect between politicians and the general public. However, it is not always feasible for citizens to attend council meetings where decisions are taken that can affect their daily lives. So let’s use modern technology and bring the meetings to them.”
Cllr Flood said “We are accountable to the public who pay our wages so it is only fitting they get to see what is happening in the chamber on their behalf. I believe that streaming council meetings will reconnect the Council with the population in Louth. To have transparency is never a bad thing.”
Councillor Flood received cross-party support for his motion and it will now move to the Corporate Policy Group who will examine how it can be implemented.
Dublin Council, Fingal and Dun Laoghaire Councils have been doing webcasts of their Council meetings for some time now so perhaps Louth County Council will be next.
“We all know why this legislation is needed quickly thanks to the campaigning of Vera Twomey for her daughter Ava Twomney, who has a severe form of epilepsy called Dravet syndrome. This has brought many others forward to campaign for the medicines that can change their lives.”
Cllr Flood commented “A dozen EU States have access programmes up and running already. It shouldn’t take the Minister this long to enact the legislation when there are several successful access programme templates that he can replicate. While the minister procrastinates, his hesitance to progress this legislation is driving people like Ava Twomey out of the country to access the cannabis based medicines that can change her quality of life.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Kenneth Flood has called for Supermarkets to be more pro-active in collection and monitoring their shopping trolleys. This follows a clean-up of the Boyne River by the Boyne Fisherman’s River Rescue Group.
Raising the issue at this month’s Drogheda Municipal Council meeting, Cllr Flood said “I was astounded at the inordinate amount of shopping trolleys that the Group recovered from the Boyne in their recent clean up. I was even more astounded when I was informed that this was only three months’ worth recovered and that they hadn’t even finished yet”.
Praising the Boyne Fishermen’s River Rescue Group, Cllr Flood said they “do a tremendous service putting their lives on the line to rescue people and then go the extra mile doing a huge service to Drogheda by clearing the Boyne like this. There has to be a change in people’s mind sets. Dumping anywhere is unacceptable but dumping for the fun of it in The Boyne is inexcusable”.
“These trolleys are a serious underwater hazard for swimmers in the river and can also destroy the propellers on passing boats. It is estimated that over 1,000 trolleys have been removed from the river over the past six years.”
Cllr Flood called on Retailers to do more to secure their trolleys when they are closed.
“If this was a once in a while occurrence then it may seem unfair to point the finger at supermarkets but this is a daily occurrence and the supermarkets do not seem to be collecting trolleys at the end of each day from around the town. The Council will be writing to supermarkets to remind them of their obligation to secure their property and also to remind them of the fines they could face if they fail to do so.”