Police give asylum seekers bike training

Police give asylum seekers bike training
Photo: Styrian police/Maximilian Ulrich
Whilst Austria has stopped processing asylum requests in a bid to make the country less attractive to refugees, one town in Styria has been doing its part to help integration - by giving asylum seekers cycle safety training.

Local police in Judenburg say the move not only helps improve road safety in the town, but is also a way to get asylum seekers involved socially.

“Learning to give hand signals and understand road signs, as well as being able to assess dangerous situations may be a matter of course for many people, but for people from other countries it’s not – and this has nothing to do with recklessness but the fact that they haven’t learnt our system,” inspector Rudolf Pöschl told the Kronen Zeitung.

42 asylum seekers voluntarily attended an initial two-hour cycle safety training course on Sunday. They learnt how to interpret road signs, with the help of English and Arabic speakers, and then practised cycling on a course set up at a local primary school.

“All the participants were very interested, showed a lot of enthusiasm and had a lot of questions – which in my view will greatly contribute to road safety – both for the asylum seekers and locals. It should also help improve and reduce tensions between asylum seekers and the police,” Pöschl said. He added that more training sessions are planned.

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