Garda Síochána Reserve

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The Garda Síochána Reserve (Irish: Cúltaca an Gharda Síochána) is the volunteer part-time section of the Garda Síochána, the national police force of Ireland. It was created in 2006. The first 36 reserves graduated on 15 December 2006 at the Garda College in Templemore.[1]

Badge of An Garda Síochána.gif


The Garda Síochána Act 2005 provides for the establishment of a Garda Reserve, consisting of approximately 1,000 people, or 10% of the regular force. Its purpose is to supplement the work of Garda Síochána's regular members. The first 900 recruits to the Reserve were expected to be in place by September 2006. As of February 2015, 1164 Reserve members were deployed. As of 13 October 2016, there were 789 Garda Reserve members with further training scheduled for 2017 [2][3] The Reserve carries out duties defined by the Garda Commissioner and sanctioned by the Minister for Justice and Equality.

Function and training[edit]

The Garda Reserve is intended as a source of local security and information. It provides local patrols and participates in crime-prevention initiatives in local problem areas.[4] The legal powers of its members are defined and managed at the commissioner's discretion.

Reservists receive training in Irish law, self-defence, restraint, human rights, Garda procedures and discipline. They must work under the supervision of, and be accompanied by, regular members of the force. Reservists have no set amount of time to work; but in order to gain expenses, they must work a minimum of 208 hours per year, with minimum tour durations of 4 hours.

Training Programme[edit]

  • Phase I – Two-day induction course (weekdays) at the Garda College, Templemore, Co. Tipperary: An Garda Síochána, Human Rights, Discipline, Ethics and Organisational Culture
  • Phase II – A 2-week all-inclusive course held at the Garda College (Monday–Friday, not including weekends): Retractable Baton, Incapacitant Spray, Tetra Radio
  • Phase III – Two day Course (Weekdays) at the Garda College
  • Phase IV – Minimum of 40 hours on-the-job training at a designated Garda Station, including accompanied beat patrol and station duty
  • Phase V – 1-day attestation and graduation ceremony, held on a weekday at the Garda College[5]

Reservists's duties include station duty (other than care and custody of detained persons), staffing communications rooms, foot patrol, static security duty, event policing, preserving crime scenes, attendance as court witnesses, and assisting at road traffic checkpoints, collisions, fires, etc.

Limited powers[edit]

Reserve Gardaí wear the same uniform as regular members, with the letters GR on the shoulder number to distinguish themselves as reserve members. Reservists are permitted limited access to the PULSE system. They are not deployed in plain clothes, or allowed to carry firearms.

Duties and powers assigned to reservists are commensurate with their training, and primarily involve legislation relating to road traffic,[6] public order,[7][8][9][10] drugs, theft and burglary.

Garda Ranks

Reservists's powers are controlled and amended at the discretion of the Garda Commissioner in accordance with Section 15 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005. Since 28 May 2007, these powers have encompassed limited Road Traffic Act powers and Section 4 of the Criminal Law Act 1997.[11]

Additional reservist powers were announced by Alan Shatter, the previous Minister of Justice, including powers to deal with public order offences and the seizure of vehicles in accordance with Section 41 of the Road Traffic Act 1961. These powers were granted on a phased basis, and implemented by the end of 2012. In 2015, the Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald, confirmed the introduction of these powers.[12]


  1. ^ "First Garda Reserve members graduate". RTÉ News. RTÉ. 15 December 2006. Retrieved 26 May 2007.
  2. ^ "Garda Reserves to receive greater powers". RTÉ News.
  3. ^ "Garda Reserve: 13 Oct 2016: Written answers (". Retrieved 16 November 2016.
  4. ^ "About the Garda Reserve". An Garda Síochána. Retrieved 20 April 2016.
  5. ^ Síochána, An Garda. "Garda Reserve - An Garda Síochána - Ireland's National Police Service". Retrieved 20 November 2016.
  6. ^ "Road Traffic Act 1961". eISB. Irish Government. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
  7. ^ "Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994 Section 8". eISB. Irish Government. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
  8. ^ "Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994 Section 21". eISB. Irish Government. Retrieved 23 April 2016.
  9. ^ "Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994 Section 22". eISB. Irish Government.
  10. ^ "Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994 Section 24". eISB. Irish Government.
  11. ^ Irish Statute Book, Acts of the Oireachtas, Garda Síochána Act 2005, Section 15
  12. ^ "Garda Reserves to receive greater powers". RTÉ News. Retrieved 23 April 2016.

See also[edit]