Limerick Council installs CCTV cameras in 14 towns to deter anti-social behaviour

Limerick Council installs CCTV cameras in 14 towns to deter anti-social behaviour
File photo.

CCTV cameras have been put up in towns and villages across Limerick in a bid to curb anti-social behaviour.

The decision was made by Limerick County Council and the Gardaí in a bid to reduce incidents of crime and provide a deterrent.

Fourteen urban areas have seen them introduced in the past number of months as part of the joint initiative.

Newcastle West has seen eight cameras installed in its town centre while numerous others have been added to urban areas around the county in recent months.

Superintendent John Deasy from Newcastle West Garda Station says the cameras are important to help provide safety in the community.

He said: "It is a valuable tool in deterring people engaging in offences and public disorder.

"It is also a very valuable tool when crime is committed, when public disorder occurs, to be able to investigate that, and it is part of our investigative processes."

Locals think it is a good idea, with one man saying: "I think it is a good thing for keeping control of anti-social behaviour. In the square it can be quite bad on the weekend and in the evenings.

"A few years ago I used to collect my daughter here at two in the morning and there were very little guards."

Another local said: "I think it's working. I know some people have a reluctance over them, but my view is if you are not doing anything wrong, why would you be worried about being filmed?"

Update: 3.41pm: The Data Protection Commissioner’s Office has issued a note confirming that there is a legal basis for community-based CCTV and that the General Data Protection Regulation does not introduce new barriers in that regard. In particular, the Office in its note confirmed that:

Data protection legislation does not stand in the way of the roll-out of community-based CCTV schemes that have been authorised by the Garda Commissioner. Once the local authority in the administrative area concerned is willing to take on and deliver on its responsibilities as a data controller for the schemes concerned, there is no legal impediment under data protection legislation to the scheme commencing.

Speaking today, Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan said: “The guidance issued by the Data Protection Commissioner’s Office in relation to data protection and community CCTV is very welcome.

"It should assist in clarifying queries or concerns which communities and local authorities may have had; and provide further reassurance to them that community CCTV schemes, when duly authorised, have a clear legal basis.”

- Digital Desk

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