Garda oversight

Oversight of Ireland’s policing service

GSOC works side-by-side with other independent agencies, notably the Garda Síochána Inspectorate and the Policing Authority, as well as with the Department of Justice and Equality, to deliver on different elements of Garda oversight.

The Garda Síochána Act 2005 (as amended) sets out the legal basis for the establishment and functions of the bodies. See the principal Act and Amendment Acts.

Our shared aim is to provide a better policing service for the people of Ireland. Each agency has different functions which contribute to achieving this overall objective.

The Policing Authority was established with effect from 1 January 2016.

It has a range of functions, including:

  • Overseeing how the Garda Síochána performs its policing functions and ensuring that they use their resources in a way that achieves the highest levels of efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Putting a Code of Ethics in place, to set standards of conduct and practice for members of the Garda Síochána.
  • Approving the Garda Síochána Strategy Statements and Policing Plans and setting priorities and levels of performance.
  • Making nominations for appointment, by the Government, to the posts of Garda Commissioner and Deputy Garda Commissioner, following a selection processes undertaken by the Public Appointments Service.
  • Appointing/removing persons to/ from the ranks of Garda Superintendent, Chief Superintendent and Assistant Commissioner.
  • Reviewing arrangements for the recruitment, training and development of Garda members and civilian staff.

Find more information on their website.

The Garda Síochána Inspectorate was established in 2006.

Its objective is to ensure that the resources available to the Garda Síochána are used to achieve the highest levels of effectiveness and efficiency in its operation and administration, as measured against best international practice. It does this by carrying out inspections or enquiries on the operation and/or administration of the Garda Síochána. These can be done as a result of a request by the Minister for Justice and Equality, or by the Policing Authority, or on the Inspectorate’s own initiative. The Inspectorate’s other main function is to provide advice to the Minister and to the Policing Authority with regard to best policing practice.

Find more information on their website.


Read the most recent Memorandum of Understanding, Protocols and Agreement on Operational Matters between the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission and An Garda Síochána.

File Type File Name File Size Last Updated

23rd September 2013 - Press Release

A new Memorandum of Understanding, Protocols and Agreement on Operational Matters between the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission and An Garda Síochána has been agreed
3.32 MB 23 Sep 2013