The AFP hosted an event in South Australia’s south east on the weekend, as part of its proactive engagement with the migrant community on the Limestone Coast.
Teaming up with SAPOL, emergency services and local migrant support networks, the AFP invited the Afghan, African and Karen communities to join in activities at the Noorla Yo-Long Blue Light Camp on Saturday (4 February).
AFP Detective Superintendent Melinda Adam said the AFP’s Community Liaison Teams (CLTs) were located across the country and regularly engaged with migrant communities.
“The aim of this local event was to encourage culturally and linguistic diverse youth from the south east (Limestone Coast) community to attend a fun event with their families and get to know the AFP, local emergency services personnel and support networks,” Detective Superintendent Adam said.
“We have held similar events in the past in the south east and received positive feedback from the community.
“Many immigrants and refugees have come from conflict zones and may carry negative perceptions of police. Our engagement is one step in addressing any misconceptions that may be held of police and authorities at an early stage of their settlement journey.”
The AFP’s dedicated CLT members are based across Australia and attend community and youth events, organise and participate in forums with spiritual and community leaders, as well as act as a conduit between the community and law enforcement.
“Focussing on helping those who have recently arrived in Australia, connecting them to other support services and organisations and providing information about the AFP and how the agency may be able to support them is vital to protect the safety of everyone who calls Australia home,” Detective Superintendent Adam said.
“We also make sure they know they have rights and that police in Australia will protect them from persecution.
“The community needs to trust police enough to feel that if they see a family member or friend who is going down the wrong path, that they can go to police for help.”