Deputies and supervisors with the Ascension Parish Sheriff’s Office recently completed diversity training that was held at the APSO Training Center, Sheriff Jeff Wiley said in a news release.

Members of the patrol division, corrections division and a few other selected employees were required to attend a four-hour session, conducted by Sissy Franks, of Organizational Development Solutions, LLC, of Rapides Parish.

The training touched on topics such as exploring all aspects of diversity and how it affects relationships with co-workers and the public, and to help identify their own cultural conditioning and the impact it has on how deputies view the world and those they interact with, the release said.

“The purpose of this training was to account for the needs and increasing diversity within the community we serve,” Wiley said. “With recent events that have occurred across our nation, we felt it was essential that our personnel be reminded that if members of our community feel that their own concerns are not addressed or understood, their confidence in law enforcement to meet these needs may be severely damaged.”

In all, 168 APSO deputies attended the training.

“It is imperative for us to fulfill the responsibilities of community policing and having awareness of community diversity,” Wiley said. “Understanding and respecting different cultures that we serve helps to develop better relationships and mutual understanding amongst deputies and citizens,” he added.