Intercultural Competence Essay

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10th May 2011, London: Following several incidents involving the police and members of the public of different cultures, religions and beliefs the country has decided to educate the police force and publish a handbook that is designed to give officers a better understanding of the needs and expectations of the people in the area. This handbook will relate to everyone from asylum seekers and ethnic minorities to travelers, homosexuals and people with disabilities. The councils Head Officer in Diversity issues said, “It is crucial that the police in Britain understand and are aware of the different cultures involved in the community that they serve in order to improve the service and trust for the people we are protecting”.

One incident that caused a lot of media attention to the way that the British police force handles multicultural and diverse members of the public occurred last year in Essex County when a Muslim woman was arrested and the police officer proceeded to search her for concealed weapons. For Muslim women this is very disrespectful to be searched by a man, who later requested that she remove her headscarf so that he could see her properly. It is incidents like this that are completely cruel to someone with different beliefs than the police officer. After the media had heard about the way this individual was mistreated the police officer involved said, “I had no idea that I was disrespecting her religion or her beliefs and I would have never acted in that manner if I was aware of the vast differences”. This is why the need for a handbook and more cultural education for the police is necessary to run a more effective police service.

Another incident that backs up this handbook was the documentary filmed by the BBC called ‘The Secret Policeman’ (2003) which investigated the police force in Manchester and the large amount of racism displayed during the show, typically referring to Muslim and Middle-Eastern members of the public as ‘Pakis’. The...
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