Kerry County Councillor defends using term ‘tourist police’ when calling for monitoring of COVID-19 restrictions

A Kerry County Councillor has defended using the term ‘tourist police’ when calling for measures to ensure visitors are adhering to COVID-19 restrictions.

Fianna Fáil councillor Breandán Fitzgerald wants a representative from Kerry County Council, the Gardaí or another State body to monitor beaches and public areas.

He says this representative would assist and guide tourist and locals, to ensure they are observing social distancing and enjoying our amenities safely.

Cllr Fitzgerald is aware that many beaches have been over-crowded recently, and says that isn’t acceptable.

Cllr Breandán Fitzgerald says maybe another term, such as tourist guides, would be better but says the term ‘tourist police’ started an important debate:

 

Meanwhile, Fine Gael councillor Jim Finucane disagrees and says the term ‘tourist police’ is unfortunate.

He says we can’t offer vouchers encouraging people to travel here on the one hand, while at the same time talking about tourist police.

Cllr Finucane says we have the capacity to deal with tourists in Kerry.

He adds that so many local businesses depend on the tourism trade to survive: