California Police Chief- Fall 2013 - Page 28

Sikh Officers Help Meet the Needs of the SIKH COMMUNITY By: Ruben Chavez Chief of Police, Livingston Police Department The City of Livingston is located in the rich agricultural valley of Merced County. Almost 20% of the residents are Indian from the State of Punjab in Northern India. Many are drawn to the San Joaquin Valley as it mirrors much of the agricultural area in their native state which has been described as the bread basket of India. The State of Punjab is also the home to Sikhism which is the religion of the majority of the Indian population in Livingston. Almost 250,000 Sikhs reside in California, half of the national population in the United States. Unique cultural and religious practices of Sikhs include the five articles of faith, the Kesh is their uncut hair, the Kangha, a wooden comb, the Kara, a bracelet on their right wrist, the Kachehra, a religious undergarment, and the Kirpan, a curved knife worn on them. The Kirpan has caused some concern for the schools which, by state law, do not allow knives on their campuses. A solution has resulted in the Kirpan being sown into the child’s clothing so it is not to be easily accessible. Many of the cultural practices also require that anyone entering the Gurdwara, or Sikh 28 California Police Chief | www.californiapolicechiefs.org church, to cover their heads and remove their foot έ•…ΘΈ)Q‘₯́ΑΙ…Ρ₯”Ν‘½Υ±‰”Ι•ΝΑ•Ρ•‰δ…ΉδΑ½±₯”½™™₯•Θ)…́ݕ±°°‘ΥΙ₯ΉœΡ‘½Ν”Ρ₯΅•ΜΡ‘•δ΅…䁹••ΡΌ•ΉΡ•ΘΡ‘”)ΥΙ‘έ…Ι„…́Α…ΙЁ½˜Ρ‘•₯ȁ‘ΥΡ₯•ΜΈ)Q‘”M₯­ ½΅΅ΥΉ₯Ρδ₯ٕ́Ι䁽Υѝ½₯Ήœ…Ή₯Ή±ΥΝ₯Ω”)έ₯Ρ‘₯ΈΡ‘” ₯Ρ䁽˜1₯Ω₯ΉΝΡ½Έμ‘½έ•Ω•Θ₯Ё₯ٕ́Ι䁍±½Ν”)­Ή₯Ё…ΉΑ…ΙΡ₯₯Α…ѕ́₯Έ΅…Ήδ•±•‰Ι…Ρ₯½ΉΜ…Ή…Ρ₯Ω₯Ρ₯•Μ)έ₯Ρ‘₯ΈΡ‘•₯ȁΥ±ΡΥΙ”°έ‘₯ ΅…䁹½Π‰”­Ή½έΈ‰δ½Ρ‘•Θ)΅•΅‰•Ί½˜Ρ‘”ΑΥ‰±₯ŒΈQ‘•Ν”™•ΝΡ₯Ω…±Μ₯Ή±Υ‘”Ρ‘”₯έ…±€°)9……ȁ-₯ΙΡ…Έ½!½±„5½‘…±±„°…ΉY…₯Ν…­‘€°έ‘₯ ‘Ι…έ