Garda ethics training ‘to maintain trust of public’

Gardaí are to get special training on how to report wrongdoing and on areas such as respect and equality in order to “maintain the trust of the public”, writes Juno McEnroe.

A nine-point code of ethics agreed by the Policing Authority will be taught to senior gardaí in training sessions nationwide over the coming months, to “embed” reform in the force.

The training will provide gardaí with an opportunity to examine themselves and to deal with members of the public or colleagues in an ethical manner, according to tender documents.

Morale and public trust in the gardaí are at an all-time low following recent controversies and was further rocked by the shock resignation of Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan on Sunday.

To “embed” the new code of standards in the force, the tender says an expert in ethics will be hired to give training to senior garda management team, including every assistant garda commissioner.

Training sessions across six regional areas will cater for up to 60 senior gardaí with follow-up courses, it says.

Ethics courses will be held in garda stations and the training college in Templemore where accommodation and meals will be provided.

Garda management wants topics in the ethics training to include their duty to uphold the law, honesty and integrity, respect and equality, police powers, privacy, transparency as well as speaking up and reporting wrongdoing.

The tender adds: “The code is intended to inspire everyone working in An Garda Síochána to achieve high goals in daily work and life.

“By promoting the nine standards the organisation will build and maintain the trust of the public and contribute to safe and peaceful communities.”

This story first appeared in the Irish Examiner.

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