PSNI officers to receive 2% pay rise

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Police officers in Northern Ireland are to receive a delayed 2% pay rise.

The PSNI award mirrors that made to officers in England and Wales and will be backdated to the start of September last year.

It was revealed in a letter from Stormont’s Justice Department to DUP South Belfast MP Emma Little-Pengelly.

Officers had to wait for the extra pay since it had required ministerial approval and no ministers are in place at Stormont.

Department of Justice permanent secretary Peter May said: “I am pleased to advise that approval has now been secured for the award of a 2% consolidated increase to the existing pay scales for the federated and superintending ranks of the PSNI.”

It will include ranks below assistant chief constable.

The increase will also be applied to the Northern Ireland transitional allowance, which recognises the security situation, and the dog handlers’ allowance, the Justice Department said.

The pay award to officers at other ranks within the PSNI will be confirmed upon receipt of the requisite approvals.

George Hamilton retirement
Northern Ireland’s chief constable, George Hamilton, has expressed frustration over the delay (Brian Lawless/PA)

“This increase should have been implemented from September 1 but because we are in a political and legislative no-man’s land, where regular business is stalled, it has taken this length of time to get full implementation of the pay award,” he said.

“This 2% is not what we asked for or, indeed, what the Pay Review Body (PRB) recommended, and I deeply regret and resent the Government’s refusal to accede to our properly researched and justified claim.

“The Pay Review Body is an independent body. For the Government to dismiss the PRB’s pay recommendation calls into serious question both the independence and purpose of the body.”

Northern Ireland’s chief constable, George Hamilton, has previously expressed frustration over the delay.

Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley legislated late last year to give civil servants greater decision-making powers in the absence of ministers.

Ms Little-Pengelly said: “Last month I reiterated the call from the Police Federation that there must be parity for all police officers across the United Kingdom.

“An officer in the PSNI must be treated the same as an officer in Scotland or England.

“I am delighted that this has now been agreed.”

Mr Hamilton said: “We welcome the 2% pay increase made by the Department of Finance to PSNI officers from the rank of constable through to chief superintendent.”

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