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Police working together with ethnic communities

Police working together with ethnic communities – strategy launch

Police are launching their ethnic strategy on Wednesday 2 February at 5.30pm at the Wellington City Town Hall.

"NZ Police are keen to develop better understanding of the diverse communities we serve, and to be culturally sensitive in any interaction with those communities," says Superintendent Pieri Munro, General Manager of Mâori Pacific Ethnic Services at the Office of Commissioner.

"We need to work effectively with the rapidly growing ethnic communities, whose ethnic heritage distinguishes them from the majority of other people in New Zealand, including Mâori and Pacific Peoples. These communities include a variety of Asian, Latin American, Middle Eastern, African and Continental European people," says Mr Munro.

Mr Munro says while crime and road crash statistics among these ethnic groups are similar to national averages, there is a need to actively encourage ethnic communities to report victimisation and crime.

"There is also an awareness that engaging with and understanding these communities now, while their numbers are relatively small, will utilise a narrow window of opportunity before engagement and co-operation can become a difficult process, as found in other parts of the world.

"This strategy recognises the complex nature of new communities settling in New Zealand and acknowledges that Police, like the general New Zealand population, need assistance in incorporating these groups into policing processes.

"Police will need to work closely with a range of key partner agencies to help achieve safety outcomes for ethnic communities. The successful delivery of the safety outcomes also requires the understanding, respect, confidence and support from the diverse ethnic communities," says Mr Munro.

Police is one of the first government agencies to formally develop and launch an ethnic responsiveness strategy. The strategy is a milestone for Police in working collaboratively with the diverse ethnic communities it serves.

The ethnic strategy will launched simultaneously in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

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