If there was an example of how to set up a community alert group, the new Feighcullen-Pluckerstown & District Community Alert Group would be it, declared Conor O’Leary of Muintir na Tire.
He was speaking to the large crowd, which turned out for the launch carried out by Supt Ian Lackey at Ballyteague GAA club last Thursday December 5.
Supt Lackey said it was the first alert group he had launched in the Naas District.
He said, in general, crime figures were lower than last year in the area and the only crime that was up in the district was car break-ins. However, he said that was no consolation for someone who has been a victim of a crime.
He said the text alert service was a crime prevention tool and could also be used to issue road safety warnings, or alert people about missing persons. He said the gardai very much depended on the public’s assistance and wished the new group well.
Group chairman, Neil Nolan praised the gardai for their co-operation and he thanked in particular Gda Stephen Brennan, Sgt Conor McMahon and Supt Lackey for their support. He also thanked the local representatives for their work on behalf of the community. He said the area covered 10sqkm with 15km of road and 132 houses in Cloncurry, Boston, Feighcullen and Pluckerstown. He said they had an 80% take up of the text service but there were some houses they had still to get to. He said the text alert works in two ways. Neil explained that if a person sees a crime being committed, they can contact Naas gardai on 045 884300. If the gardai deem the complaint to warrant a text, they will send it out to those signed up to the service. The gardai can also issue their own texts on the system.
Neil explained the group have an action plan, which they were working on and were registered with Muintir na Tire. He said they were working in partnership with the gardai, Kildare County Council’s litter warden and Coilte. He said there were plans for litter pick ups, coffee mornings and other events to help promote social cohesion in the locality. They will also be able to give out alarms for the elderly, which are grant aided.
“No man is an island, no woman is an island and I would urge everybody to get involved, the committee is grateful for the support, and we need that support because without that, it will flag,” he said.