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Almost 500,000 viewers tune in for new documentary series The Guards: Inside The K
06 Mar 2020 : News Desk
New Virgin Media Series The Guards: Inside The K.
Almost 500,000 viewers tuned in to watch the first episode of the ground-breaking documentary series, The Guards: Inside The K, on Virgin Media Television on Wednesday.

An average of 287,000 viewers watched across the full hour of episode one on Virgin Media One, with a further 38,000 views via Virgin Media One +1 and Virgin Media Player.

The programme proved popular with 15 – 44-year-olds, delivering an average 28% share of viewing, making it the number one programme in its timeslot.  

The documentary was followed by a Tonight Show Special with Matt Cooper and Ivan Yates featuring Jim Mulligan, President of the Garda Representative Association who said:

“It’s a very accurate reflection of what’s going on the ground. We’ve been saying these things for many years and to actually see the real dangers that are faced by our members on the ground portrayed in such an honest fashion, I think it is helpful that people actually realise the job that they do out there and how difficult it can be.”

“These are minority groups of vicious gangs who do not have any regard for anyone else’s lives, and indeed what worries us is when we see our members confronting that, and that’s why we’ve been calling for better equipment, better safety training, tactical training, all of that stuff for the last number of years because we see this growing now only in Dublin but in other areas recently such as Longford and Drogheda.”

Talking about bodycams for Guards, he Mulligan: “let the judges see what the guards are dealing with on the street and it might change things and it might help protect our members. One of the things that we have been looking for… is proper legislation with mandatory sentencing where those situations arise and to have the likes of bodycams to be able to show the courts this is what we actually have to put up with”.

Alan Farrell TD, Fine Gael and former chair of the Fingal joint policing committee also responded to the programme: “It was a particularly harrowing show and I would like to commend those who put it together and particularly the Gardaí in question who clearly are under an awful lot of pressure under certain circumstances – it is a snapshot in daily duties of An Garda Síochána in that particular district.”

Martin Kenny TD, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Justice called for better resources for An Garda Síochána: “I think it was an excellent eye-opener as to what the Gardaí are dealing with on a daily basis. It’s a part of their work, not all of their work. I think it’s important and everyone has pointed this out, this is a small minority of people within these communities. Most communities are suffering a blight of having these people living among them. We certainly may need tougher laws, we need more resources for An Garda Síochána. We need to see more community police on the street. Because all of us are a product of our environment and many of these young people who grow up in these societies end up in a terrible situation.”

‘The Guards: Inside The K’ continues next Wednesday 11th March at 9 pm on Virgin Media One.

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