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PSNI Performance Targets too low

9 December, 2007

Sinn Féin Policing Board member Alex Maskey has said that the PSNI must set its targets for clearing up crime much higher.

The PSNI Policing Plan 2007/08 target for increasing the clearance rate is 3% yet new figures show that instead of improving that clearance rates are falling. In 2006/07 the overall clearance rate was 19.6% yet early figures indicate that this has now fallen to below 18.5%.

Ms Maskey said:

"The Policing Board is currently working with the PSNI to agree the new Policing Plan for 2008 and Sinn Féin is arguing that the current clearance rates are unacceptable and that a much improved performance by the police is required.

"While in some areas there has been a decrease in recorded crime communities will be very concerned that this has yet not led to any real improvement in clear up rates. In fact we are now solving less crime.

"New figures show that overall there is a decrease in clearance rates and that this is especially serious in relation to sectarian, racist and homophobic hate crime. Clear up rates for sectarian hate crime in rural areas has fallen by over 5% and less than 1 in 10 sectarian crimes are now cleared up by the PSNI.

"These figures represent poor performance. It is unacceptable that instead of any improvements that overall and specifically for hate crimes that performance is getting worse.

"Sinn Fein believe that the current target for improving clearance rates at just 3% is far too low. We will be working with the Policing Board and the PSNI to ensure that we look at how we can deliver immediate and sustainable improvements and set higher targets to improve clearance rates further." ENDS

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