Northern Ireland

Belfast Pride: Uniformed Gardaí invited to parade by PSNI

Garda (Irish police) office Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A Garda spokesman said officers have permission to wear their uniforms

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has invited Gardaí (Irish police) to join them in marching in a gay pride parade in Belfast.

Last week, the PSNI announced some of its own officers will march in uniform at the Belfast Pride parade, for the first time in the festival's history.

PSNI officers have taken part in the parade before, but never in uniform.

A Garda spokesman said its officers have also been given permission to wear their uniforms at the Belfast parade.

However, their attendance will be voluntary and unpaid, as they will be marching in a different jurisdiction.

The event is due to take place in Belfast city centre on Saturday, 5 August.

A Garda spokesman told BBC News NI: "Members of An Garda Síochána, their families and friends are all invited to take part and join members from the PSNI and their colleagues from Great Britain.

"Garda members may, with permission, take part in uniform.

"Attendance at the event is at the Garda member's own expense," he added.

Image copyright PSNI
Image caption The PSNI is to deploy 'Policing with Pride' signs on some of its vehicles at this year's festival

The PSNI will also have vehicles and signs at this year's event to encourage the public to report homophobic hate crime.

The 'Policing with Pride' liveried PSNI vehicles will also be used at Pride events in Newry and Londonderry.

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