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Recent developments of policing in Ireland have seen a shift towards local crime prevention initiatives through local partnerships. The principle aim of this study is to explore the effects of the partnership model of policing with the recent introduction of Joint Policing Committees (JPCs). This dissertation seeks to examine the opinions of members of JPCs towards this model. The research employed a qualitative methodology obtained through semi-structured interviews of JPC members and observational studies. In addition, this thesis reports on literature regarding partnership, security and governance in modern society. While this research project found that informal partnerships between An Garda Siochana and Local Authorities existed prior to the formation of JPC, since their establishment, partnerships have become more formal and accountable. There is strong evidence to suggest that elected representatives were slow to fully engage in the partnership model of policing, the councillors were against community representatives involvement on JPCs as they were ‘not elected’. The councillors felt that local authorities and Gardai attended JPCs meetings to answer councillor’s questions and report to them. They did not view their role as part of policing partnerships, working together with other agencies to find solutions. Research found that the main strength in the JPC model was local Policing Fora’s which were based in local communities. These foras were less formal in structure and involved real community participation, which dealt with local policing issues. It is important for JPCs to establish a system of communication to inform residents of development in relation to the policing of their local area. The principle conclusion has revealed that all participants agreed that the JPC model of partnership is the way forward for policing. This model is capable of developing and involving other agencies, as well as the community in the policing of their local areas. There is a constant need for ongoing monitoring to facilitate the evaluation of Joint Policing Committees processes. In summary it is hoped that this research into the partnership model may be the catalyst for more extensive research to be carried out in the future.
Harrington, D.: Partners against Crime A Review of Partnerships in Joint Policing Committees. Masters Dissertation. Dublin Institute of Technology. 2011.