Wednesday, 26 October 1977
Dáil Eireann Debate
Mr. Quinn: asked the Minister for Justice if he will enter into discussions with the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and the Garda Representative Body with a view to establishing an independent trade union for members of the Garda Síochána.
The Government could not agree to accord trade union status to the Garda Representative Bodies having regard to the special nature of the functions and responsibilities that are discharged by members of the force. I am glad to be able to say, however, that negotiations have already been completed between my Department and the representative bodies for the garda, sergeant, station sergeant and inspector ranks about changes in the status of the bodies and in the negotiating machinery available to them and that as a result of these negotiations agreement was reached regarding the changes to be made. That agreement is now in the process of being implemented. It will entail among other things the enactment of legislation to amend the Garda Siochana Acts and a Bill for this purpose has already been initiated by me. It has been enacted here today as far as the force is concerned.
I should add that, while the negotiations with the bodies were undertaken and completed during the term of office of the previous Government, the present Government fully subscribes to the changes that were agreed upon and are committed to implementing them as soon as possible.
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