'Rural community officers needed to prevent young people being recruited by gangs'

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More community police officers are needed to stop young people in rural areas being recruited by gangs according to the Oireachtas Justice Committee.

It is one of 20 recommendations aimed at tackling rural crime.

The recommendations also call for more patrols in areas where Garda stations were closed down and better funding for CCTV and text alert systems.

Crime Victims Helpline's Michelle Puckhaber said the measures are a step in the right direction: "It does require resources to both investigate crime but as well to do with crime prevention and do that community policing so it does require good resourcing of the Gardaí, but really I think the pay off is really worthwhile.

"The community policing model has a lot of potential to prevent problems and to prevent crime and make people in real communities feel more secure."

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