Figures show PSNI 92% Protestant, council discrimination

Figures released today show that the PSNI police has a membership which is 91.6% Protestant, fuelling the debate on the failure of the Patten police reform process.

The figures were included in a report by the Equality Commission.

Sinn Féin spokesman on policing Gerry Kelly said the figures demonstrated clearly that the PSNI does not reflect the society it is supposed to serve.

``The result of Patten not being delivered by the British government and the behaviour of the PSNI in nationalist areas, has been the fact that the numbers of Catholics and nationalists willing to support or join the PSNI are tiny.''

The figures show that Catholics are still much more likely to be unemployed than Protestants, with pockets of blatant discrimination across local councils.

In particular, the Castlereagh Council, frequently put forward as an example of a well run local authority employs a 93% Protestant workforce.

The commission's figures showed that Carrickfergus Borough Council also had a marked religious imbalance with a 92 per cent Protestant and eight per cent Catholic workforce.

In total, 15 councils which are majority unionist, were found to employ a mostly Protestant workforce. The figures also show that in seven councils with nationalist majorities, Catholics make up the larger proportion of the workforce.

Reacting to the publication of a report into employment practices in the six counties by the Equality Commission, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Equality Caitríona Ruane said that the report showed clearly that much work remains to be done if the unemployment differential between Catholics and Protestants is to be closed.

``It is a reminder of how much inequality remains within the core of society in the six counties.''

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