Red and blue lights illuminate the evening as you exit your vehicle. Your polished black boots hit the ground and march with determination. Your hands rest at your waist as your trainers instilled into your posture and your authority is visible. It’s not unusual for you to deal with an array of emotions from community members. Anger, relief and hysterics have all been dealt with before. But this time is different. You witness a small smile crease their face. Your pink shirt, hat, or cruiser makes a statement to the community you serve. You and your agency support the millions of women diagnosed with breast cancer each year.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the nation goes pink in honor of those who fight and have fought against the disease. Law enforcement has joined the fight for a cure through many unique campaigns. Whether it’s wrapped pink cruisers, participation in an annual charity walk, or wearing pink lapel pins, officers everywhere are spreading hope, one statement at a time.
Agencies around the country have taken this month’s cause to heart by showing their support. The following is a list of unique and successful efforts.
Battle Creek, Mich.—The Battle Creek Police Department is donning pink for a week in October. The department annually collaborates with Pink Ribbon Riders to raise money and awareness for the cause. A neat aspect about this campaign is how community members are asked to help. By wearing these shirts, the department encourages community members to purchase their own specialized shirt for a $10 donation. The fundraising was successful last year, raising more than $1,700 and assisting more than 60 breast cancer patients in the local area.
Jackson, Miss.—Jackson Police Department and Hinds County Sheriff’s Department go red this October. In a multiple agency competition, officers and firefighters are donating blood for Support the Badges to Cure Cancer Blood Drive. The drive, which the departments coordinated, stores blood for fellow officers and firefighters who might need it during their fight against cancer. The event kicked off during Breast Cancer Awareness Month but units collected will support those battling any variation of cancer. According to ClarionLedger.com, the drive raised 35 units of blood in its first few days with each bag capable of assisting 2-3 people.
Palm Beach, Fla.— A softball tournament allowed The Enforcers of the Palm Beaches to raise money for the cause. The Enforcers is a non-profit group founded by law enforcement professionals to promote physical fitness and teamwork while raising money for local charities. They wore black and pink uniforms, displayed a pink police cruiser, held silent auctions, raffled prizes and invited the community to the event. They donated proceeds to local Bosom Buddies II. They strategically chose this charity because it offers financial assistance to breast cancer victims in the communities they serve.
These campaigns are but a few gracious efforts by members of the law enforcement field to become more involved in the communities they serve. Businessman Jerry Greenfield once said, “If you support your community, they will support you.” In your line of duty, you understand supporting the community. You get dirty, put your life on the line, work long shifts, and run into situations others flee from. You serve your community by handling criminals and disputes but do you then take part in the positive side of that same community? Efforts such as these take you out of the cruiser and into situations where you can see the positive, works of good people who otherwise may be forgotten. If you support the community, they will continue to support you. You vow to support your community. In how many ways do you show support?