Training of police officers to improve dialogue with Roma communities

29-01-2024 14:39

" I have always wanted to become a policeman. I really like working with people and I do feel good when I can help," says Konstantin Raykov, who has been in the police system for 22 years. Since then, he has also worked in the Roma district of Fakulteta, where he lives. As we walk the streets, people greet him with respect. "We've gained their trust over the years, and when we need their help, they help." He always speaks in the plural, because achievements and results are the result of teamwork. "Our days are very dynamic, every case we work on is different, so sharing experiences and learning new lessons is very important. It was very useful to participate in seminars with colleagues who work in Roma neighbourhoods in the country. It turned out that our problems are similar, but we shared different ideas for solutions."

The trainings are part of the project „Improvement of the coordination and dialogue between Police and Roma society", funded by the Home Affairs Programme of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. The aim is to increase professional skills in the field, improve communication with Roma communities, early recognition of signs of radicalisation and take appropriate preventive measures.

Within the project, 20 reception rooms are being renovated and equipped in Roma neighborhoods in Sofia, Burgas, Varna, Pazardzhik, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Vidin, Montana, Sliven and Yambol. The renovated reception areas will provide better working conditions for police officers and will be a contact point when problems arise for local communities.