Page last updated at 07:39 GMT, Tuesday, 18 May 2010 08:39 UK

Humanists join Hertfordshire Police chaplaincy team

Hertfordshire Police is believed to be the first police force in the UK to add humanists lay advisers to its chaplaincy team.

Pam Burn and Ray Owen joined the team this month and will help support police officers and other staff.

The chaplaincy team has 20 members from a range of faiths, including Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Paganism.

Humanists believe morality is based on human nature, human society and human experience.

Superintendent Simon Hawkins, lead officer for faith, religion and belief, said: "It is vital that we provide appropriate support structures to our police officers and staff, and that they can have a choice that is compatible with their religion, belief or faith."

Andrew Copson, the chief executive of the British Humanist Association, said the organisation welcomed the force's "inclusive and progressive instinct" to include humanists on the team.

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