PICNA and Masjid Noor Ul Huda have enjoyed very close and productive relations with the Richland County Sheriff Department (RCSD). Under the able leadership of Sheriff Leon Lott, RCSD has provided great support to the Muslim Community of Columbia, especially to PICNA’s partner Masjid Noor Ul Huda, a prominent local mosque. From security assessments to Active Shooter Training to an Emergency Evacuation Drill, the department has provided various services in recent years. Sheriff Leon Lott has been invited to Muslim Eid Celebrations on a number of occasions where he has had the opportunity of addressing the Muslim Community and earning their trust and friendship.
PICNA, in turn, offered to provide the Sheriff Department their popular Diversity Training program entitled ‘Understanding Islam and Muslims’. The event was held at one of the department’s training centers on Tuesday, August 16, 2022. The program was attended by employees from various sections of the department, especially their Community Action Team. The participants showed keen interest in the presentation and appreciated its educative and informative value. After the main presentation, Dr. Carl Evans, a highly respected Interfaith leader, spoke briefly about his understanding of Islam and Muslims.
In the end, it will be pertinent to mention that, instead of the usual practice of inviting members of the Muslim Community to their Academy, the Sheriff Department has taken the unique initiative to bring the Citizens Academy Training to the Muslim Community. This is a distinct honor for the Muslim Community and proof that the strength of their mutual relations has developed over the years. This training that comprises of four weekly sessions and includes youth services, a school resource officer program, a K-9 unit, and a narcotics and aviation display, is scheduled for October 2022. Members of the Muslim Community are eagerly looking forward to this amazing opportunity.
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