Neighbourhood Policing Team officers in Bradford are getting closer to the communities they serve in a series of inter-faith awareness sessions.
Front line PCs and PCSOs are to build upon their knowledge of the different religions and their associated customs.
Leaders from different beliefs throughout the city have been invited to hold seminars at Lawcroft House Police Station.
The first was held yesterday with representatives from the Al- Mustafa Mosque in Girlington discussing Islam.
Inspector Steve Dodds of the Manningham and Toller Neighbourhood Policing Team has helped to organise the talks and said:
"It will involve increasing our officers understanding of the varying faiths within the Bradford District as well as forging local contacts.
"Although the first session relates to Islam, we are also planning similar work around Christianity and Judaism. I am currently speaking with St Phillip’s Church in Girlington and the Bradford Synagogue in order to deliver this.
"The first of the hour long sessions with the Al-Mustafa Mosque will involve a general overview and history of Islam.
"It is really an informal introduction to local Mosques and the Islamic faith in Bradford. It is not intended to be a full insight into Islam, but is an opportunity to learn basic greetings and an understanding of the etiquette required of operational staff.
"It will help the police to identify particular issues and prevent any misunderstandings or insensitivity through lack of awareness or understanding.
"These training sessions will be a great opportunity to break down barriers and for our officers to learn more about the varying religious beliefs within our city.
"If we are able to provide officers with a better knowledge of a particular faith, then it will no doubt reflect on the service we provide to the public.
"Although we already have an extremely diverse workforce in Bradford, this will serve as a continuation of our commitment to residents.
"Our engagement work within the local neighbourhoods has generated an increase in confidence over the last twelve months are we are always looking to build upon the strong relationship we have forged."
Hamzah Khan of the Al-Mustafa Centre added:
"It is fantastic to be involved in this project and particularly to see the Police taking an active interest in learning more about the communities they serve. Bradford's Neighbourhood Policing Team's have worked hard to transform both the relationship and perceptions of the Police within the community.
"This is an extremely positive step forward for our City and I believe more positive engagement between Community Groups and NPT's can only contribute further to building stronger and safer communities."