Mosque Leader targeted by Ukranian terrorist has been recognised for his actions
The Leader of a mosque targeted by Ukranian terrorist Pavlo Lapshyn has been recognised for his calming influence during challenging times for the country.
Imam Ghulam Rasool, from Tipton mosque, was one of 25 police officers, police staff, young people, business leaders, and community groups who scooped honours at the first awards of the West Midlands Association of Muslim Police (WMAMP).
By collecting the Contribution to Social Cohesion award the imam was also recognised for his role during EDL demonstrations in Sandwell when he acted as link between police and the local Islamic community.
The joint winner of the award was Aston’s As-Suffa Institute who distributed over 3,000 meals to homeless people in Birmingham and Coventry during Ramadhan.
Tariq Jahan, whose son Haroon Jahan who died after being knocked down by a car in Winson Green, Birmingham during the 2011 riots, collected a Special Recognition award for his peace keeping role during the disorder and his more recent international humanitarian work in war torn Syria.
Among the police officers accolades was PC Rob Pedley, a trainer from the force’s Firearms Unit, who − as his citation read “has been instrumental in supporting black and minority recruitment within this specialised department”.
In addition to organising taster sessions for WMAMP members who are interested in joining the elite Firearms Unit, the PC is also a mentor with Mosaic, a group formed in 2007 by HRH the Price of Wales, to create opportunities for young people growing up in deprived areas.
PC Pedley was just one of the police officers honoured at the ceremony
The ceremony was attended by Police and Crime Commissioner for the West Midlands Bob Jones and Chief Constable Chris Sims who handed out the awards.
Talking about the ceremony Mr Jones said: “We are very proud to have Muslim police officers and staff who play vital roles in policing the diverse communities of the West Midlands.
“There is a clear underlying message coming from these awards, that everybody who works for the force has an opportunity to be valued and for their abilities and to be recognised for excellence.”
Focusing on members of the public who received awards, Chief Constable Sims said: “The West Midlands Association of Muslim Police have also extended recognition to the local communities who have made significant contributions to social cohesion.
“Challenging times have shown us the necessity to maintain and build stronger community relationships to make the West Midlands a safer place to live, work and visit.”
The event, funded through donations from sponsors and from ticket sales, was held at Crystal Plaza in Small Heath, Birmingham last Friday (6 December).
Commenting on why the awards were launched, chairman of the group, Sergeant Mustafa Mohammed, said: “We decided that it was time that members of the community who delivered above and beyond their normal responsibilities, were recognised.
“These individuals and groups often deliver in their own time and unnoticed, but we wanted to create an opportunity to reward these unsung heroes.”
WMAMP was formed in 2007 and joins other well established force staff associations including the LGBT Network, Christian Police Association and the Association of Women in Policing.
The group aims to increase the number of Muslim people working in the force, provides developmental opportunities for members and raise awareness of issues affecting Muslim people in a policing context.