Sikh police officers in Britain want the government to develop bullet-proof turbans to allow them to serve as firearms officers without having to remove their headwear.
Sikh officers are exempt from a legal obligation to wear crash helmets because of their religion’s requirement to wear a turban, but this means they cannot wear the protective headgear of firearms officers.
Inspector Gian Singh Chahal, vice-chairman of the newly formed British Police Sikh Association, said the Home Office needs to make provisions for Sikhs to recognise their role in the police force, the Guardian reported.
“Sikh officers have been prohibited from becoming firearms officers because our religion does not allow us to remove the turban,” he was quoted as telling the journal Police Review. “There has been some research done into producing a ballistic material (for turbans).
“We would like to follow any opportunity where we could manufacture a ballistic product, made out of a synthetic fibre, that would ensure a certain degree of protection, so Sikh police officers could take part in these roles.”