Website To Help Police

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27th November 2009, 04:01am - Views: 786
Website to Help Police

27 November 2009

Queenslander of the Year Sergeant Jim Bellos is one of many officers profiled on a new website launched in Brisbane today to help police working with ethnic communities.

Parliamentary Secretary for Multicultural Affairs and Settlement Services Laurie Ferguson said Taking the Initiative police working with Australia's diverse communities was the culmination of many months of consultation with police around Australia.

"This project showcases initiatives which help break down barriers between police and emerging communities such as the Sudanese, Afghans and Burmese," Mr Ferguson said.

"It will help police share information on how to create and build trust and enhance relationships."

The online resource is part of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship's website.

"One of the problems we face is the negative perceptions some of our new arrivals have of police," Mr Ferguson said.

"This is not a reflection on the integrity and professionalism of our police force. It is a result of their experiences in their former countries.

"This resource is a very positive step in the right direction."

Highlighted projects include swimming classes for Muslim women, camps for fathers and sons, driving programs, information sessions about Australian law, sporting and leadership programs.

"There is currently so much being done around the country in this area it would be a shame not to share this knowledge," Mr Ferguson said.

"Initiatives like these are based on some very Australian values compassion and respect for the dignity and freedom of the individual."

A number of police officers who work closely with these communities are also profiled on the website.

The web resource is available at www.immi.gov.au/police.

Media Contact: Carla Wilshire 0432 755 935

SOURCE: Laurie Ferguson, Parliamentary Secretary for Multicultural Affairs

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