Reducing security at police stations is 'reckless' says South Tyrone MLA

Concerns have been raised that security at police stations in the west of Northern Ireland are being 'diminished to unreasonable levels'.

Monday, 22nd March 2021, 10:29 am
Updated Monday, 22nd March 2021, 10:56 am

South Tyrone Ulster Unionist MLA Rosemary Barton said: “I have been informed that prominent police stations in he west of Northern Ireland like Dungannon, Enniskillen, Cookstown and Omagh will be reduced to just one civilian security officer from the middle of next month.

“I understand that the security staff levels at these stations have been reduced in the past, however the latest proposal to have just one officer at all times is reckless and from a security perspective is irresponsible.

“One person who must remain in the one security hut for a 12 hour shift at a time is ludicrous. The potential security implications are unthinkable, and the moral depression for staff I assume has not been considered.

Rosemary Barton MLA.

“Given the below strength level of police resources, along with the high security threat, the number of stations greatly reduced and public access to police greatly diminished it appears this is another penny pinching exercise, which will come at a serious security risk.

“The PSNI attempted this move over two years ago but thankfully must have realised their error of judgement and didn’t implement the measure."

Mrs Barton said she has contacted the PSNI Chief Constable and local area commanders to request this measure is not implemented.

A PSNI spokesperson said the Police Service does not comment on specific security arrangements.

"However keeping the public, our staff and officers safe is of paramount importance and all security arrangements are risk assessed and reviewed on an ongoing basis," the spokesperson added.

---

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.

Please consider purchasing a copy of the paper. You can also support trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription of the News Letter.