PFNI reacts to Supreme Court ruling on illegal parades

Release Date: 1 Feb 2017

Source: PFNI

The Chairman of the Police Federation for Northern Ireland, Mark Lindsay, says a consideration as to why illegal Union flag protests were allowed to take place was because the PSNI didn’t have sufficient Officer numbers.

In a reaction to the Supreme Court ruling, Mr Lindsay said: “Given the fact that the PSNI was hundreds of Officers short of the peacetime minimum, it would have been impossible to deal with widespread trouble if orders were given to prevent illegal parades.

“As it was, we had more than 100 Officers injured in serious street disorder. A below-strength Service would not have had sufficient resilience to robustly deal with un-notified parades. 

“Today is no different. In fact, we have fewer Officers on the payroll now than we did in 2012. The interpretation of the law is one thing, but having sufficient numbers present to uphold the law is quite another matter.

“We must not delude ourselves that being 700 short of a peacetime figure is sufficient. Our numbers are dangerously eroded and the sooner that fact is acknowledged by the Chief Constable and our political paymasters, the better.”

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