Police Oversight Commissioner’s comments on community policing should be taken as broader warning

Alliance Party Leader David Ford has said that the comments of the Police Oversight Commissioner cautioning that new police command units will hinder relationships with local community must be taken seriously, and said that they have wider application that just policing.

David Ford stated: “The Police Oversight Commissioner’s comments are welcome because they are a fair assessment of the situation. The response must be to take them seriously.

“The ability of police to relate to local communities will be greatly hindered by larger command units, to the detriment of the public’s safety. This problem cannot just be wished away.

“The Commissioner’s comments are a broad warning against throwing away the relationship between institutions and the communities they serve, and they

apply well beyond policing. No one can argue that a structure running in a boomerang shape from Kilroot to Culcavy has any link or meaning to local communities – not for policing, and not for anything else.

“Surely public safety and the ability of government and justice institutions to relate to the people they serve is more important than short-term political games.”


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