03 June 2005

Belfast Telegraph

Order calls for end to 50:50 policing quota

By Michael McHugh
03 June 2005

The Orange Order has backed calls for reform of the PSNI and demanded a reversal of the 50/50 recruitment policy.

The claims in the Orange Order's online newsletter follow strongly-worded criticism of the PSNI by former Policing Federation chairman, Jimmy Spratt, earlier this week when he suggested that the PSNI was losing the intelligence war against the IRA.

The Policing Board has defended the post-Patten recruitment system in the past, but many unionists are unhappy with the quota system imposed by 50/50.

A piece in the latest edition of the Orange Standard said the policy was discriminatory and unfair and called for its abolition.

"It also goes without saying that the obnoxious discriminatory recruitment policy which mitigates against Protestants joining the PSNI must be scrapped," the article said.

"It has been well-documented how unfair this recruitment policy is, with Protestants, who constitute 57 per cent of the population of Northern Ireland, restricted to less than 50 per cent of places on the PSNI.

"Northern Ireland is paying a heavy price for the blunders of the Patten recommendations implemented by a compliant Government," the article continued. "The sooner this unrealistic policy is reversed the better it will be for Northern Ireland."

Mr Spratt, a DUP candidate in the last Westminster election, questioned the PSNI's ability to thwart major criminal raids through intelligence-led policing following the amalgamation of Special Branch with CID.

A spokesman for the Policing Board said they had no comment to make.

Mr Spratt,Is this the same Mr Spratt who told the full time reserve constables that our jobs were same,and not to rock the boat,say nothing and the N.I.O will think that we have gone away.Mr Spratt like his other DUP mates have sold out the full time reserves just like they have sold out the R.I.R.I like many other reserve officers held out hope that the DUP
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