Skibbereen community alert scheme relaunches after seven years

Group set up in partnership with An Garda Síochána and Muintir na Tire to promote personal safety
Skibbereen community alert scheme relaunches after seven years

Skibbereen town centre. Picture: Brian Lougheed

A West Cork town has relaunched its community alert service after almost seven years.

In partnership with An Garda Síochánna and Muintir na Tire, the Skibbereen Community Alert group has reestablished itself with the aim to promote personal safety.

The text alert system will be reactivated providing personal safety warnings to locals.

Councillor and group secretary Karen Coakley told the Irish Examiner: “With the fear of a rise in criminal activity before Christmas, it was decided that the alert scheme was an essential tool to ensure the safety of the community, particularly during lockdown.” 

Ms Coakley says it is important that people stay alert: 

We’ve all got to be more aware of our personal safety, particularly during these times.

The group is run by a small number of group members but Ms Coakley said they plan on holding public meetings once restrictions ease.

“It’s imperative we will have new members for the success of the group," she said.

People will be able to receive messages directly from the local Garda station, which will encourage vigilance and help create awareness among locals.

These texts will also make the community aware of phone scams.

This comes after gardaí issued a public warning to make people aware of scams circulating under the branding of courier companies.

Superintendent Ger O’Mahony said: “The recent relaunch of the group is a really positive expression of the local community’s commitment to keeping each other safe in partnership with An Garda Síochána and Muintir na Tire. The Group aims to complement the very strong sense of community spirit and incredible work of existing voluntary groups within the town.

“It will actively promote personal safety and wellness, crime prevention strategies and the early reporting of suspicious activity to An Garda Síochána.”

The warnings sent by gardaí are generally in relation to crimes being committed or if any suspicious activity has been reported in the community.

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