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Garda and Social Welfare Road Checkpoint.

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  • 28-05-2009 10:02am
    #1
    Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 5,094 Mod ✭✭✭✭


    I hope I,m in the right forum for this question.

    Given that social welfare and garda are now often together at road checkpoints, i,d like to get clarification on 2 points.

    1. Am I required by law to give any information to a garda request at a checkpoint.

    2. Am I required by law to enter into a question and answer session with social welfare at a checkpoint.

    thanks.

    kadman


«13

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 68,317 ✭✭✭✭seamus


    I've moved this into the public domain kadman. If you would prefer to not have it here, I can delete it.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 5,094 Mod ✭✭✭✭kadman


    Thats fine seamus, sorry about that.

    kadman


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    kadman wrote: »
    1. Am I required by law to give any information to a garda request at a checkpoint.
    The Garda can ask what he likes but he is only entitled to certain information required by law such as name and address, Date of Birth, insurance information etc. Things like where have you been and where are you going and other chit chat do not need to be answered. Pages 132 and 133 of the current rules of the road explain what the Gardaí can ask for.
    kadman wrote: »
    2. Am I required by law to enter into a question and answer session with social welfare at a checkpoint.
    Absolutely not. The have no statutory powers in this regard. They certainly have no power to compel traffic to stop hence the Gardaí. People on the dole are entitled to use the roads.

    I would be interested to know how legal this set up is.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,972 ✭✭✭McCrack


    In relation to no 1 if you are the driver of a motor vehicle in a public place you are required to allow the Garda reasonable time to discharge their duties. This means stopping if requested and having them check tax, ins., licence, tyres etc. They can demand your name and address and you are obliged to give them this...nothing more, nothing less. So questions like where are you coming or going or what you ate for dinner you don't have to answer.

    If the Garda are operating a mandatory alcohol checkpoint you are of course obliged to co-operate by blowing into the bag if requested.

    In relation to social welfare I'm not up to speed on social welfare legislation but I would of thought it would be officers from the Revenue at these checkpoints??, particularly near the border.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,025 ✭✭✭happyoutscan


    What's the story with Social Welfare at checkpoints? Jeez I've heard it all now.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    What's the story with Social Welfare at checkpoints? Jeez I've heard it all now.
    These are basically fishing trips by the social welfare hoping to catch benefit cheats.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,025 ✭✭✭happyoutscan


    Bond-007 wrote: »
    These are basically fishing trips by the social welfare hoping to catch benefit cheats.

    How exactly? Sorry for asking, my mind is rather fragile this morning/afternoon/day/week/month/year. I'm thinking checkpoints along the borders?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    I am not entirely sure tbh, the OP will know more me thinks.

    We are more discussing the legalities of the procedure.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,957 ✭✭✭Hooch


    AGS regulary (and have for year) do checkpoints with Customs, social welfare, health and safety authority and county council.

    These are looking for in order, Desiel/VRT, someone working and claiming social welfare, checking carrige of dangerous material (orange diamonds on front of trucks) and checking permits etc.

    You dont have to answer social welfare, although you are obliged to cooperate with the other services. But Welfare can request the driver info through the proper channels from AGS.

    And yes the checkpoint are totally legal and and been around as long as I can remember.
    Hope this helps
    NGA


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,045 ✭✭✭ttm


    This might explain what they are looking for.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    Can a Garda detain a vehicle until they comply with the social welfare?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    ttm wrote: »
    This might explain what they are looking for.
    Multi-Agency Checkpoint

    These multi-agency vehicle check points are set up by An Garda Síochana and planned in consultation with other participating agencies. The recent checkpoints included the Gardaí, the Department of Social and Family Affairs, the Revenue Commissioners Customs & Excise officials. From time to time other agencies such as the Health and Safety Authority, Road Safety Authority or Local Authority can participate.

    At the checkpoints, Gardaí stop the vehicles and refer certain vehicles to individual agencies where the occupants are interviewed.
    I would assume that someone can tell whoever that they will not answer anything and drive off as they have no power of detention.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,957 ✭✭✭Hooch


    Bond-007 wrote: »
    I would assume that someone can tell whoever that they will not answer anything and drive off as they have no power of detention.

    Once the Garda has discharged his duties as per 109 RTA;).

    Have only come across one incident of no comment. Welfare simply requested info from the member concerened and started its process.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,045 ✭✭✭ttm


    If someone can dig through the legaleze the act that is being used is here Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005

    Edit> important bit is here......

    (16) A social welfare inspector may, for the purposes of ensuring compliance with this Act, if accompanied by a member of the Garda Síochána in uniform—

    (a) stop any vehicle which he or she reasonably suspects is used in the course of employment or self-employment, and

    (b) on production of his or her certificate of appointment, where so requested, question and make enquiries of any person in the vehicle or require that person to give to the social welfare inspector any record relating to his or her employment or self-employment which the person has possession of in the vehicle, and examine it.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    Interesting to say the least.

    So would private passenger vehicles be excluded based on the above.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 2,045 ✭✭✭ttm


    Bond-007 wrote: »
    Interesting to say the least.

    So would private passenger vehicles be excluded based on the above.

    Don't think so when it says "question and make enquiries of any person in the vehicle"

    Edit> Sorry misread your post but I still think they can stop any vehicle provided they have reasonable cause.

    2nd Edit> Hmmmmm reasonable cause would be the wrong wording "reasonably suspects" is the actual wording "stop any vehicle which he or she reasonably suspects is used in the course of employment or self-employment" don't think you can get much more catch all than that.

    That might mean that if you don't have tools of your trade visable or the likes of a hi viz jacket on the seat then you wouldn't be questioned but if you had paint or cement on your cloths you might reasonably be suspected of working?


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,888 ✭✭✭✭Riskymove


    ttm wrote: »
    Don't think so when it says "question and make enquiries of any person in the vehicle"

    Edit> Sorry misread your post but I still think they can stop any vehicle provided they have reasonable cause.


    I would have presumed a SW inspector had certain powers in order to inspect!

    I dont see any problem with this, people not cheating benefit have nothing to be concerned about after all..apart from being delayed at a checkpoint


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,207 ✭✭✭partyguinness


    You dont have to answer any questions.

    But you risk being arrested and generally put through the mill in the police station. Also your silence will prob revoke your social payments...


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,957 ✭✭✭Hooch


    You dont have to answer any questions.

    But you risk being arrested and generally put through the mill in the police station. Also your silence will prob revoke your social payments...

    Arrested for what??

    I thought there was a right to silence in the state?? Didnt think infrences could be drawn from not answering the ''doleman''


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,207 ✭✭✭partyguinness


    Arrested for what??

    I thought there was a right to silence in the state?? Didnt think infrences could be drawn from not answering the ''doleman''


    Of course inferences can be drawn plus you are not cooperating with an social welfare officer carrying out his lawful duties

    oh yeah..and the stash of weed they will find in your boot...;)


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 10,012 ✭✭✭✭thebman


    So is this a message to unemployed construction foke to take their jackets out of their vehicles and work tools etc... in case they are stopped?

    It seems kind of crazy, the persond could just have left the crap in the car.

    By that logic, I work in IT so if I have my laptop in my car can they presume I'm going to work with a client instead of visiting my parents or going to help a friend and won't be getting paid?

    Having tools isn't proof that your working I would have thought.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 11 MorrisDunn


    Even if one has nothing to hide I would take exception to some bureaucrat trying to suspend my liberty no matter for how short a period.


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 5,094 Mod ✭✭✭✭kadman


    So basically, the message coming through is that in this type of situation, you have no right to privacy, even if you are going about your business in a legitimate manner.
    I thought I read some where that you are not required to give your name and details to a garda unless he tells you under what act he is questioning about.Does he not have to give good reason why he is stopping you.

    I thought that the constitution guranteed your right to travel unmolested.
    Just for the record, I,m not involved in anything criminal at all:) I was asking from the point of view , that I thought you could not be detained , unless good reason was given for doing so.

    kadman


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    A Garda can stop you under S109 Road Traffic Act 1961 and request certain information from you and you must comply with those requests.

    As a matter of interest what were the SW inspectors asking you or doing?


  • Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators Posts: 5,094 Mod ✭✭✭✭kadman


    I was not stopped at any checkpoint, nor questioned by any one. I specifically asked the question, because I heard that such checkpoints were in use in the midlands about 3 months ago, and I was curious to know a persons rights in such a situation.

    As I said previously, I was under the impression that liberty was assured in the constitution. I was never aware that sw could question you at such a checkpoint. I find it strange that an innocent person can be detained by sw with absolutely no evidence of anything, in order to question him.

    kadman


  • Registered Users Posts: 72 ✭✭gally


    Look, if you,ve nothing to hide whats the problem?If drawing the dole and working you,re depriving genuine needy cases and stealing from the working taxpayer.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    I do agree with you that without "probable cause" they would have no business detaining you. If they have a specific allegation they can always visit you at home or demand you appear at their office for interview under caution.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    gally wrote: »
    Look, if you,ve nothing to hide whats the problem?If drawing the dole and working you,re depriving genuine needy cases and stealing from the working taxpayer.
    The problem is people curtailing peoples liberty to conduct fishing expeditions. Are you a social welfare inspector by chance?
    This is not the morals and ethics board. If you want to discuss those aspects there are other forums available. We are discussing the legality of the actions of SW.

    Take your high moral horse elsewhere.


  • Registered Users Posts: 72 ✭✭gally


    No I,m a PAYE taxpayer for the last 40 years.Got up off my arse every morning rain hail or snow and out to work.Admittedly lucky to have always had a job.But I do think SW Inspectors are,nt interested in depriving people of their liberty,just ensuring taxpayers money is spent fairly.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,476 ✭✭✭✭Our man in Havana


    And your post is connected to legal discussion how?


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