The Saskatoon Police Service is hoping to ease the transition to the city for newcomers — something even more important with a recent influx.

“There are so many groups of refugees here. There are still Syrians who are relatively new to the country, the Ukrainian people who are arriving and just general newcomers who’ve come here as immigrants. It’s a culture shock for many of them and they need to learn what makes up our society,” according to Staff Sgt. Patrick Barbar.

This is a first-of-its-kind event in Saskatoon. Newcomer Maryam Sasani is thankful for the knowledge she’s getting.

“Helping people like us to get information about dangerous situations is good,” Sasani told CTV News.

Those dangerous situations include fraud and scams.

“Even some of the common scams or bad guys are those pretending to be police or law enforcement event spoofing our caller ID numbers and threatening people to pay with bitcoin, gift cards or cash,” Sgt. Hal Lam with the economic crime unit said.

It’s all one more layer of protection for newcomers.

“Not knowing how government works puts you at risk of believing a scammer so it’s important for them to know that government won’t phone you and ask for a credit card,” Barbar says.

There was also information about bike safety and free helmets were handed out, as well as details on SGI driver licensing.

Driving rules were also covered which Barbar says is a big adjustment for many, especially those with small children.

“Child seats — in so many countries in the world, that’s a foreign concept, so we include the requirement for children to be in special seating while in a motor vehicle and we’re even giving away child seats,” he said.

The information at the newcomer event can also be found on the SPS website. Barbar says they will host special sessions for large groups on request.

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