News & Media

Group more refugee ready

By: Catherine McLeod

Category: Community Safety, Training & Recruitment

  2.08 PM 1 July, 2013


Location: District 14 News

Views: 2115

The Mt Cotterell Group of brigades is now more refugee ready, having piloted cultural awareness training in the North West Metro region.

Hosted at Hoppers Crossing Fire Station, and fittingly arranged during Refugee Week, the training provided some practical tips in engaging with newly-arrived communities. The opportunity was welcomed by the group given the rapid growth in population and significant numbers of newly-arrived refugees now living in areas such as Werribee and Truganina.

All the brigades have experienced first-hand the challenges of responding to people who fear flashing lights and uniforms, and are keen to be better placed to manage such situations.

Guest speaker Leading Senior Constable Ali Gurdag APM from Northcote Police provided valuable experience and insights, including benefits of building closer ties with CALD communities in operational response.  LSC Gurdag has over 10 years’ experience in policing, and was able to highlight the direct benefits between building trust and respect with CALD communities, and better policing outcomes.

Several  brigades in the group have started working to build relationships with their local CALD groups, and were encouraged to see the direct results these efforts can bring.

Over a cuppa, the group also had an opportunity to have input into the design of a prototype field communication resource with NWMR Multicultural Community Engagement Project Coordinator, Catherine McLeod. The resource looks to  replace the old ‘flip-books’. Using internationally recognised symbols and pictures, the resource aims to be suitable for all languages, and will also be appropriate for people who have little or low literacy in their spoken language. The brigades provided invaluable input into this resource and will be key partners in its ongoing development.

If you'd like more information, contact either Catherine or Community Education Coordinator Nicole McGill on 8746 1400.

Last Updated: 02 July 2013