The President of the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors has blamed a lack of recognition from senior figures in the force for undermining garda confidence.
Tim Galvin made the remarks at the opening of the middle ranking Gardaí's annual conference in Killarney, Co Kerry.
"Generally, I would say morale is fairly low," he said.
"By and large, most of the guys I work with basically come in and they do their job as well as they can, but there's no trickle-down from the top by way of compliments or 'thank you's.
"So most of the guards I have under me and the sergeants I have under me come in every day, 100% professional, and go home."
In his speech, Galvin also said that the work of frontline officers is being undermined and being made harder and more stressful by the current controversies.
"Because of current controversies, and an ever-expanding workload, morale is on the floor within an Garda Síochána," he said.
"The organisation has been making the headlines across all the media for all the wrong reasons.
"The reasons for these headlines are all to do with governance, and how the organisation is being run.
"It relates, by and large, to poor policies, and poor implementation of policies – clearly the responsibility of senior management, and not frontline supervision."