The New York Police Department has long been at the forefront of law enforcement. It was established in 1845 and is the largest police organization in the United States, with around 35,000 officers.
For the past few months, the NYPD assisted the Secret Service in protecting President-elect Donald Trump, a New York City resident. And now the department is back in the news, but this time for a new reason — as of Wednesday, Sikh officers in the NYPD are allowed to wear turbans as an official part of the uniform.
According to CNN, during a Wednesday press conference, commissioner James O’Neill stated that “we want to make the NYPD as diverse as possible, and I think this is going to go a long way to help us with that.” O’Neill said there are roughly 160 Sikh officers in the department. Washington, D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department, which enacted a policy allowing Sikhs to wear turbans in 2012, currently has no officers that follow the religion.
NYPD is indubitably among the most diverse police departments in the world; the force includes almost 1,000 Muslim officers.
According to Sikhs.org, Sikhism is a sort of amalgamation of all the religions. Sikhs profess faith in one god, but believe in reincarnation. At just over 500 years old, it is a relatively new religion. The last of the 10 Sikh prophets died in the early 1700s.