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Legislation Master Plans

Fitzgerald Report (69 KB)
Appendices to Fitzgerald Report (3.4 MB)

In October 2006, former Dublin City Manager, John Fitzgerald, was appointed by our Government to lead an initiative to address issues of social exclusion and crime and disorder in Moyross and our other troubled estates.

His appointment was prompted by a horrendous attack on two children in Moyross in September 2006 that shocked the nation. Six-year-old Millie and her four-year-old brother Gavin Murray are lucky to be alive after they became human fireballs when their mother's car was doused with petrol and set alight while they were inside. The attack took place because their mother had refused to give someone a lift to the courthouse 10 minutes earlier. Three teenagers were later charged and convicted.

On 3rd April 2007, John Fitzgerald issued his report to our government's Cabinet Committee on Social Inclusion, which stated:

"Fundamentally, and as a matter of high priority, early intervention is required to deal with the problem of serious criminal activity. This problem needs to be dealt with as a matter of urgency so that a stable environment is created where other initiatives can take effect. Failure to do so is likely to lead to the frustration of other efforts to address social and economic problems."

The Fitzgerald Report made a total of 9 recommendation. Indeed, the first recommendation of the Fitzgerald Report was to:

"Put in place intensive policing arrangements: As a result of my consultations it has become clear that, although policing on its own cannot solve the problems in the long term, intensive policing intervention is required in the short to medium term to allow the other interventions an opportunity to work. This cannot happen against the continuing backdrop of crime and intimidation...there needs to be a highly visible Garda presence at all times in these estates in order to restore confidence and stability in the communities. A policing structure, headed by a Superintendent, should be established that is exclusively dedicated to the policing of these areas. This will involve a minimum of 100 additional Gardaí, with appropriate management structures, whose sole function will be the policing of these areas."

This never happened. While it is true to say that 100 additional Gardaí were assigned to the Limerick Division (which covers Limerick City & County and parts of Co. Clare) in the year-and-a-half that followed the publication of the Fitzgerald Report, these Gardaí were not exclusively dedicated to the policing of regeneration areas. They weren't part of a "policing structure, headed by a superintendent" because a superintendent was never appointed. In short, there was no real attempt to implement this first and vital recommendation.

The second recommendation of the Fitzgerald Report was to "Establish Structures for regeneration" involving the establishment of two regeneration agencies, one for the Northside and one for the Southside. The Limerick Northside and Southside were established by Ministerial Order in June 2007 and were staffed and ready for business by September 2007. The Ministerial Order will lapse on 14th June 2012.

The third recommendation was to "Establish dedicated teams under the auspices of the Development Agencies to address Social and Family problems in the designated areas, including issues of educational disadvantage" There is no real evidence to suggest that this ever happened. Likewise for recommendation 8, "Address the drugs problem".

Instead, the Agencies focused most of it's efforts on producing numerous documents in the lead up to the 'Master' Plans for regeneration , while financing the depopulation and demolition of the estates through the auspices of Limerick City Council. Clearing the land for developers and displacing people.

Alas, the only part of the Fitzgerald Report that seems to be getting any attention is to "...unlock the value of lands, all of which are within short distance of the city centre...", and which is heavily dependent on a booming property market for success.