California Lawmaker Works With Coalition to Propose Law Mandating Kirpan Education

February 26, 2009

Author: Staff Writer

Source: Sikh Coalition

A proposed law to mandate kirpan education for California's peace law enforcement officers was introduced by Assembly Member Warren Furutani (D-Long Beach) in the California State Legislature this week. Since November 2008, the Sikh Coalition has been working alongside state lawmakers and law enforcement representatives to draft this legislation. Were it to pass, this would be the first law pertaining specifically to the Sikh kirpan anywhere in the United States.

A Kirpan Education Bill

The proposed law would require training about the kirpan for every law enforcement officer who has the ability to make an arrest in California. The bill states explicitly, "It is the Legislature's goal to promote education and awareness of the carrying of the kirpan by Sikhs in California." The training would advise officers about "how to recognize and interact with persons carrying a kirpan."