Engaging with Law Enforcement Across the Country
Ensuring that Law Enforcement is educated about Sikh Americans is critical. These men and women are responsible for our safety, they investigate crimes against us, and they are charged with the difficult task of quickly identifying suspicious or threatening behavior. Recognizing the need to partner with this group, SALDEF launched its Law Enforcement Partnership Program (LEPP) in 1999, and over the past 11 years has trained or distributed materials to over 100,000 local, state and federal Law Enforcement Officials.
Under the auspices of this program, SALDEF has partnered with the Department of Justice to produce a first of its kind training video about Sikh Americans for Law Enforcement. The video, called On Common Ground, was shown to all 45,000 Transportation Security Officials in 2008 and has since been included in the Transportation Security Administration's mandatory training curriculum for all new security officers.
Over the past few months, SALDEF has provided educational cultural competency presentations in a number of areas across the country:
On May 25, SALDEF held a Sikh Awareness Training for a dozen officers at the Montgomery County Police Department (MCPD). The training was well received and the Department has scheduled a future training for their new class of recruits and will potentially use SALDEF to train each new recruit class. Additionally, the MCPD will be visiting a local Gurdwara to learn more about Sikh practices and meet the local sangat.
<img alt="" align="right" border="1" height="157" hspace="1" vspace="1" width="150">On June 11, SALDEF Board Member Kavneet Singh conducted a presentation in Charlotte, NC titled Sikhism 101: An Introduction to Sikh Beliefs and Culture for Law Enforcement. The training was organized by the U.S. Department of Justice - Community Relations Service who SALDEF has partnered with extensively over the past decade. The agencies in attendance included:
- Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI)
- U.S. Attorney's Office
- Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)
- North Carolina Bureau of Investigation (NCSBI)
- University of North Carolina, Charlotte (UNCC)
- Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department
- Gastonia Police Department, Davidson Police
- Pineville Police Department
<img alt="" align="left" border="1" height="141" hspace="3" vspace="3" width="200">On June 16, SALDEF was invited by the Captain of the San Francisco Police Academy to conduct a training on Sikh Americans. This was the first in a series of trainings with the Department which will hopefully lead to a long-term partnership and mandatory Sikh Awareness training for all cadets and officers in the SFPD. The topic of the training was to highlight specific areas of interest to law enforcement when the may come in contact with Sikh Americans, be it on patrol, at the Gurdwara, or at the home of a Sikh American.
The efforts above add to the growing list of significant training endeavors taken on by SALDEF. Past accomplishments have included:
- Training the entire Boston Police Department
- Training the entire Washington DC Metro Police Department
- Performed Training at Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC)
It is only through your generous support that SALDEF is able to continue to build partnerships with the Law Enforcement community. Please take a few moments and DONATE to SALDEF today with either a recurring monthly donation or one-time donation. Your contribution helps us create a more fostering environment for the next generation of Sikh Americans.