Chris Lyttle MLA said: “Northern Ireland is now descending into a massive financial crisis, caused by unionist and nationalist parties putting their party interests ahead of the people. Library staff redundancies last week was bad, but now we have the prospect of hundreds of police officers having to sit behind desks instead of policing our community. This is the stark reality of failing to manage our public finances.
“The inability of the Executive to get a grip on the budget crisis has left the Chief Constable no option but to implement major cuts, and this announcement is just the beginning. But while he sat last week trying to manage his budget, the First Minister and deputy First Minister refused to sit down and work out how to manage theirs. The community is now paying, and paying dearly, for their failure of leadership.”