The PSNI has over 7,000 police officers. It has the third largest number of officers after the Metropolitan Police and Police Scotland. It covers the second largest demographic in the UK.
Neighbourhood policing looks very different to that in England and Wales. The PSNI operates in a particularly complicated social and political environment which makes it challenging to build relationships with some communities.
All officers in Northern Ireland are armed.
HMICFRS’s role in inspecting this force
The Police Service of Northern Ireland is subject to an annual statutory inspection by HMICFRS under Section 41 (2) of The Police (Northern Ireland) Act 1998. We inspect on its efficiency and effectiveness annually.
The outcomes of the inspections are reported to the Department of Justice, Northern Ireland.
We ask the questions that we believe the public wish to have answered, and publish our findings, conclusions and recommendations. We use our expertise to interpret the evidence and make recommendations for improvement.