Speaking about the significant policing operation for the public sector industrial action on 18th January, Police Gold commander Temporary Assistant Chief Constable, Melanie Jones said:  “We will have a visible presence at parades and picket lines in towns and cities across Northern Ireland tomorrow. We are there to monitor crowds, minimise disruption and to keep everyone safe. 

“A number of large parades are planned across the country including in Belfast, Derry / Londonderry, Fermanagh and Omagh. We anticipate some traffic disruption in these areas and have issued guidance on our social media channels about the potential for delays.  I would encourage the public to check this guidance before they travel.

“With the icy conditions and the disruption to gritting operations, I also want to highlight the advice recently issued by the Department of Infrastructure that people should avoid unnecessary travel. If you do need to use the roads, please take extra care and allow additional time for your journey. 

“I want to reassure the public that we have clear plans, command structures and highly capable officers in place across the country who have significant experience carrying out this type of public safety operation. We are engaging with a wide range of partners and parade organisers and I want to thank them for their assistance so far.

“Within the Police Service itself, it is likely that a number of my Police Service colleagues will participate in tomorrow’s industrial action.   We have planned for this and arrangements are in place to mitigate any risk in critical functions. I want to reassure the public that we have the resources in place to allow us to keep people safe. 

“During previous industrial action, we experienced slight delays in receiving non-emergency reports via 101. We will monitor this throughout the day but I want to remind everyone they can report non-emergency incidents or crimes using our online tool www.psni.police.uk/report.  In the event of an emergency please always dial 999.”

Guidance for editors