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Criminal Justice Inspectorate report has equal measure of credit and criticism

3 April, 2009 - by Alex Maskey

Sinn Féin MLA and spokesperson on Policing and Justice Alex Maskey has stated that there is equal measure of criticism and credit within the report by the Criminal Justice Inspectorate into levels of neighbourhood policing and from this improvements remain to be made.

Speaking today Mr Maskey said:

“The policing in the community element of policing reform is a crucial both under Patten and as an element of reform that Sinn Féin adopted as a core requirement for policing.

“Today’s report dealing with neighbourhood policing both credits and criticises in equal measure, which obviously points to the further need for improvement.

“Neighbourhood officers have been created in every area, and training measures and procedures are being implemented to improve police/community relations on a daily basis but the litmus test for the overall project is how far the concept of policing with the community permeates all the policing structures.

“Currently neighbourhood policing only accounts for one tenth of the over all police service. It must be realised that everything that a PSNI member does and says impacts on the community and their perception of policing. This is equally true of new recruits as it is for the Chief Constable when building community confidence in new policing arrangements.

“Policing with the community must become an ethos throughout the entire PSNI and adequate resources should be given over to achieving this. Sinn Féin will continue our focus upon this key element of policing at all levels including the DPP’s, Policing Board and with the PSNI.”

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