That's the view of Mayo's Garda Chief Superintendent Tony McNamara, who is among the huge wave of senior gardaí set to resign throughout the country before the end of the year.
Speaking to The Mayo News last night, Chief Supt McNamara said that in a rural county like Mayo it was paramount for gardaí to ensure the safety of people in their own homes.
"Of course policing has changed over the years and I see the great value of community policing now.
It is important that we listen to the public and ensure they feel safe in their homes," said Chief Supt McNamara.
"A person's home is their castle, as they say.
And one burglary in a village has more of an impact than two murders in a city the size of Dublin," he
Regarding the high-profile policing of the controversial Corrib gas project, he
said 'it had proved to be a very difficult challenge'.
"I would like to say that the guards did their best, given the fractious nature of the project.
I always recognised the right of people to protest and object but those who supported it had equal rights," Chief Supt McNamara also said.
"I regretted at times that the guards were seen as supporting Shell
, but that wasn't what we were doing.
We had to maintain law and order and facilitate people going to work," he
Presently stationed at Castlebar Garda Station, Chief Supt McNamara will retire on December 4 next after a 40-year career in the force.
A native of Pollagh, Achill, as a youth Tony McNamara
always admired the work of the local gardaí.
He joined An Garda Síochána in October 1969, just months after he completed his Leaving Certificate at St Nathy's College, Ballaghaderreen.
In the interim, Tony McNamara
served in Fitzgibbon Street, Dublin, and as a Sergeant in Ramelton, County Donegal.
also served in Pearse Street Station, Dublin, and in Belmullet before being promoted to Inspector in May 1993.
After a period at Castlebar station as superintendent, he returned to Belmullet where he served until March 2005, when he was promoted to chief superintendent.
After a brief stint in Tralee, County Kerry, he returned to Mayo where he served as Divisional Officer until the present date.