Sinn Féin justice spokesperson Jonathan O’Brien has alled on Justice Minister Alan Shatter to "rethink his strategy of cutting garda numbers and closing stations" in the wake of two deaths from knife wounds in Cork over the weekend.
“The fact that two people have died over the weekend in separate knife incidents is extremely worrying, but meanwhile, the Minister for Justice and the Garda Commissioner are quite happy to reduce the opening hours of garda stations and close others," Deputy O'Brien said.
“Clearly the current approach to crime fighting and prevention needs to debated, reviewed and revised in light of escalating violence and drug crime.
"Such violent crime is a symptom of a violent society we now find ourselves living in.
“Extra garda resources need to be deployed to the Cork with a proactive approach to tackling knife crime."
Deputy O'Brien also said the culture that sees young people feel that it is necessary and acceptable to carry knives on them needs to be tackled.
“I would propose a knife crime awareness and education campaign which would include a type of knife amnesty for the Cork area that has been successful in other areas before, where young people are encouraged to give up their weapons to gardaí without fear of being charged for carrying the weapon," he said.
“If we can take the bulk of these weapons off the streets then we will be going some way to solving this type of problem."