Gardaí to provide mentoring for young people in new pilot sheme
Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald has announced the first phase of a new pilot mentoring system for young people coming to the attention of An Garda Síochána.
A total of €1.7 million is being allocated from the Dormant Account Funding to support new youth justice initiatives, including seven new Garda Youth Diversion Projects (GYDP).
Ms Fitzgerald said the “new community-based, multi-agency projects” would support gardaí in their “proactive effort to work with young people to divert them from becoming involved in anti-social and/or criminal behaviour”.
As part of the pilot scheme, mentoring services will be made available to forty-two Garda Youth Diversion Projects. The pilot is expected to be expanded during the year.
€500,000 in Dormant Account funding is being made available towards the costs of operating the pilot in 2016.
Ms Fitzgerald said: “There has been significant progress made in tackling youth crime over the recent years.
“However it is important to acknowledge that additional crime prevention and crime reduction efforts such as the Garda Youth Diversion Projects are needed in areas with a high level of youth crime and in areas where an increase in the youth population raises the risks of increasing levels of youth crime.”
She added: “These new initiatives demonstrate this Government’s commitment to preventing and reducing youth crime and to supporting An Garda Síochána in the excellent work that they do with young people who are at risk of, or who become involved in, criminal or anti-social behaviour.”