Mid-ranking gardaí 'tired of talking shops' as AGSI considers industrial action

Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors warns frustration levels are higher than ever

agsi, antoinette cunningham

AGSI president Antoinette Cunningham speaks to reporters outside Leinster House in Dublin | File photo: RollingNews.ie

The president of the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors (AGSI) has warned that levels of frustration within the force are higher than ever.

Antoinette Cunningham told Newstalk Breakfast that she had had no communication from garda headquarters since threatening industrial action on Wednesday.

AGSI members are due to discuss the proposed move at a special conference on October 17th.

Ms Cunningham indicated last week that the organisation was considering withdrawing services after learning what she described as "significant new information".

She said this concerned the Public Service Commission on Pay, as well as matters relating to the Lansdowne Road Agreement.

Ms Cunningham told this morning's programme that sergeants and inspectors were "very much supportive" of strike action being taken by the Garda Representative Association (GRA).

Rank-and-file gardaí are set to hold work stoppages on four days next month in a row over pay.

"People are tired of the talking shops that have gone on for the last four years," Ms Cunningham said.

"People are waiting for more direct action to be taken."

The AGSI chief added: "Unless the matter of pay restoration is put on the table, I don’t see a resolution to this.

"If the offer of another talking shop emerges, I don’t believe that would satisfy people in AGSI."

Ms Cunningham described a damning open letter recently written by a Cork guard to Garda Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan as a "mark of frustration" felt by members of the force.

"When people who are members of the Garda Síochána have to resort to writing open letters, it’s clearly an indication that their voice and message is not being heard by garda management...

"Frustration levels are higher than I’ve ever seen them," she said.

The AGSI is due to take part in pre-arranged talks with Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald later this week.