People often wonder if being a member of the Garda Reserves is an advantage when applying to be a full-time member of An Garda Siochana.
Answers from the Oireachtas
The answer is on record in the Written Answers from the Department of Justice and Equality as follows:
May 19th 2015
“To ask the Minister for Justice and Equality her views on whether members of the Garda Reserve should receive some preferential treatment, if and when they decide to apply to join An Garda Síochána, considering the level of service they would have already given to An Garda Síochána, and the experience they would have obtained in doing so; and if she will make a statement on the matter. “[19544/15]
Tony McLoughlin (Sligo-North Leitrim, Fine Gael)
And so the answer came back as follows:
“I wish to put on record my appreciation for the contribution that those who volunteer for service as Garda Reserve members make on a daily basis to the work of An Garda Síochána. Together with full time members, they provide vital assistance to communities and neighbourhoods right across the country.
The Garda Síochána (Admissions and Appointments) Regulations 2013 provide that, as part of the competitive selection process organised by the Public Appointments Service for full-time membership of An Garda Síochána, “due recognition to any satisfactory service by the person as a reserve member” shall be given to such candidates.
This provision was introduced in order to acknowledge the beneficial experience and skills gained by a reserve member and to allow them, at assessments and at interview, the opportunity to highlight that experience and skill. It is important that all persons wishing to join the full time force undergo the same competitive selection and recruitment process. In doing so the integrity of the process is maintained at all stages of the competition.”
Frances Fitzgerald (Minister, Department of Justice and Equality; Dublin Mid-West, Fine Gael)
Recognition of Garda Reserves
So it would appear that the hours of unpaid service dedicated to the community by members of the Garda Reserves are, rightly, taken into consideration when applying for a full-time positon.
This is proper, as serving as a Reserve gives you a very good idea of the duties, difficulties and responsibilities of a Garda, and it is appropriate that the hours served out of a sense of civic mindedness and concern for the community should indeed be recognised.
Help with Interview Crucial for Garda Reserves
However, this is not enough to guarantee acceptance in the competitive process, and the interview and application from those who serve in the reserves must be as meticulously honed as anyone else.
This is where the guidance of Garda IP is invaluable at the Stage 3 Interview. They can help you frame your reserve experience correctly to maximise your chances, so that you can translate your passion for policing into a rewarding career.