Last year, lengthy negotiations took place between representatives, management and officials of the Department of Justice and Finance. The changes to the traditional but highly complex “three discharges” system began after it was found, as revealed last year in the Sunday Independent, that the old system violated EU working time directives. Gardai is expected to begin a six-shift cycle as early as this April, followed by four days of vacation. In addition to vacation days, the gardai have their annual vacation. This major change project is one of our most important projects under the Croke Park agreement. Our stated objective in the agreement is to develop a more effective Garda tsaurization system to better balance the availability of resources with police requirements while protecting the well-being of Garda members. 14 `As required by the European Working Time Directive (ECD), the WTA provides for a maximum average of 48 hours of work per week on average over 6 months` Õ Effectiveness of this provision Õ Limited meaning in practice Õ Reassessment over a shorter period Õ Compliance with the provision Õ Overall – The provision is complied with Õ Limited overtime available. 15 Comment Positive elements Four-day rest period Holiday rights Negative elements Leave and deadlines required Apply/apply Receive Organize Shift changes (due to overlaps) Fundamental problems Resource constraints Impact of the 5th unit A new system of six-day police stations and four days off, will be introduced in the coming months, Gardai could receive 174 days of annual leave. The EU Working Time Directive has been transposed into Irish law, but gardaí are currently excluded from their remit following the adoption of section 3 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997, meaning that the scope of the Directive did not apply to members of An Garda Síochána or the armed forces. The minister says that gardaí can no longer be forced to work without rest or meal breaks Comments The introduction of a new Garda list is an important development and this is the first time that the lists and working hours have been fundamentally changed in An Garda Síochána for more than forty years. .