Will community policing in Mid Ulster take a big hit following budget cuts?


Following speculation that community policing will take the brunt of “unprecedented cuts” facing the PSNI, chief superintendent Kevin Dunwoody said he hopes to deliver savings whilst ensuring “service to the communities in Dungannon and Cookstown is fit for purpose”.

In a statement to this paper, he said: “It’s been well documented that the police service, along with all other public sector organisations, is facing significant levels of budget reduction.

But added: “All areas of business are being reviewed.

“It is too early to outline the exact impact of these cuts locally, however I believe it will have a significant impact on how we deliver policing.

“Throughout this change process we will keep the community at the heart of everything we do.

“The Chief Constable has made it clear community policing will not be coming to an end, but if we are becoming a smaller organisation, it is right that we look at how we best continue to deliver community policing in the future.

“The impact of the budget reductions will not be felt on neighbourhood policing alone,” he went on, “there is going to be an impact right across the full spectrum of policing. We have to do everything we can to live within our reduced means.

“We will have to find different ways of providing policing across the district, but it will look different and will mean we have to be more flexible about how we deploy our officers - policing smarter, with the support of our partner agencies and the community.

“There must be changes in the way policing services are delivered but we are committed to keeping people safe, preventing crime and detecting offenders.”