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Michelle O'Neill raises concerns over policing in constituency with Chief Constable

30 January, 2012 - by Michelle O'Neill

Mid-Ulster Sinn Féin MLA Michelle O’Neill has said that the PSNI need to take immediate, meaningful corrective action to repair damage to public confidence in aspects of policing.

Last week, the Sinn Féin Mid Ulster MLA had a frank discussion with PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggott around areas of concern dealing with police activity in her constituency.

Michelle O’Neill said:

“I raised a number of issues of concern for my constituents. I wanted Matt Baggott to be clearly aware of the impact of certain PSNI actions upon the community in mid-Ulster.

“The circumstances and heavy-handed approach of raids in July last year was raised, particularly the treatment of the Campbell family in Coalisland. Sinn Féin will not accept so-called intelligence-led enquiries or investigations which appear to be politically-motivated.

“I challenged PSNI Chief Constable about the retiring and rehiring of former police officers who leave with severance packages worth hundreds of thousands of pounds. I told him that those who failed to sign up to the new beginning to policing have no part to play in the PSNI.

“Sinn Féin will continue with our efforts through the Policing Board to expose and eradicate any malpractice, especially where the use of public finance is involved. The policy of retiring and rehiring former police officers into the PSNI is one which must now cease. Any other public sector employer would be scandalised for this. The PSNI is no different."

“The people of mid-Ulster are entitled to an effective and accountable, community policing service. Local people deserve nothing less. Sinn Féin will settle for nothing less." CRÍOCH/ ENDS

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