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Herts Police has joined police forces across the country in celebrating Black History Month.

The force hopes to champion Black contributions to British society, while reinforcing a commitment to tackling racism.

Chief Constable Charlie Hall said: “Black History Month not only gives us an opportunity to celebrate the contribution of our own staff, but also that of our Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities across the county.”

He continued: “It also enables me to reinforce our determination to tackle racism and the hate crime that is often associated with prejudice.”

The CC added that it’s a time to reflect on the history of diverse communities and gain a better understanding and appreciation of the different journeys people have experienced and the challenges they have faced.

Speaking about how the police will seek to better represent Black communities, he said: “Over the past year we have continued to focus our efforts on attracting more people of colour into the force, to make it fully representative of the communities it serves.”

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CC Hall added: “Thanks to the hard work of our Positive Action team and our many mentors, who support candidates through the application process, I am pleased to report that we have seen a significant increase in applicants from diverse backgrounds, with many of those successfully completing the process and their training.

“We have worked hard to ensure we have measures in place to help these new recruits progress and reach their full potential with us.

“We are also working hard to develop our existing officers of colour. We understand that for many of our Black and Asian staff, the journey into policing has been challenging in itself, and we are developing a robust support system to help them progress.”

Across October, the police force will be running various engagement events, celebrations and operations. These will focus on education, community engagement, recruitment and progression.

“We continue to be indebted to our network of volunteers from diverse backgrounds who assist us in the role of ‘critical friends’ and help us to respond more effectively to the complexities of modern-day policing,” CC Hall continued.

“My thanks to all the communities who support and advise us every day of the year on a vast array of cultural and religious issues. You help us see the world in a different way and better understand the needs of local residents.”

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This content was originally published here.

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