The OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) presented its specialized police training programme on hate crimes to the Executive Committee of the Association of European Police Colleges (AEPC) in Saint-Cyr-au-Mont-D'or in France on 27 June 2012.
The Training against Hate Crime for Law Enforcement (TAHCLE) programme, which was officially launched in May last year, aims to improve police skills in recognizing, understanding and investigating hate crimes. It draws on the OSCE participating States’ experiences in confronting hate crimes and the achievements of law enforcement agencies in addressing the problem.
Presenting TAHCLE, Floriane Hohenberg, the Head of ODIHR’s Tolerance and Non-Discrimination Department, noted that law enforcement officers play a crucial role in the effective prevention of and response to hate crimes, since they are the “first responders”, and their effective interaction with victim communities is key.
“TAHCLE is tailored to the needs and experiences of each country in which it is used,” Hohenberg said. “It is also a flexible training programme that can be easily integrated into existing police training curricula.”
AEPC is a network of 50 European police colleges and works to improve the training capacity of its members through staff exchange programmes and the sharing of good practices. The meeting was attended by senior representatives from police colleges in Austria, Belgium, Georgia, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania and Sweden.
“TAHCLE addresses the important and sensitive issue of hate crime,” said Héléne Martini, the President of AEPC and Director of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de la Police, in France. “AEPC will promote this training programme to increase the professionalism of police trainers."