Dáil Éireann - Volume 475 - 27 February, 1997
Written Answers. - Garda Union Affiliations.
Mr. M. Kitt Mr. M. Kitt
85. Mr. M. Kitt asked the Minister for Justice if she approves of members of the Garda Síochána affiliating to the Irish Congress of Trade Unions  through the Garda Representative Association or the newly formed Garda Federation, as reported in recent newspaper articles. [5444/97]
Minister for Justice (Mrs. Owen) Nora Owen
Minister for Justice (Mrs. Owen): The Garda Síochána Act, 1924, as amended by the Garda Síochána Act, 1977, provides that it shall not be lawful for a member of the Garda Síochána to be or to become a member of a trade union or of any association other than an association established under the Act. The Act also makes it an offence for a person to cause disaffection or to induce any member of the Garda Síochána to withhold his or her services. These restrictions are confirmed in the Industrial Relations Act, 1990.
Under section 13 (5) of the 1924 Act, as inserted by the 1977 Act, I may, from time to time, authorise the Garda associations established under the Acts to be associated with a person or body outside the Garda Síochána subject to certain restrictions which I may deem necessary to specify.
This section can be invoked where I am satisfied that membership of the body to which an association wishes to be affiliated would not be incompatible with the status and duties of members of a disciplined police force, to which the necessary legal prohibitions in relation to trade union membership and withdrawal of services apply. Garda associations have been authorised to affiliate with the ICPSA, that is, the Irish Conference of Professional Service Associations. I have not received any formal application from any Garda representative body to affiliate to the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and, in the circumstances, it would not be appropriate to comment on how I might deal with such an application.
Dáil Éireann 475 Written Answers. Garda Union Affiliations.