January 9th, is Police Appreciation Day, and the Safer Together Staff in the City’s Department of Public Safety alerted residents today and have asked residents to thank a police officer, or to wear blue in support of police officers.

Tomorrow, January 9, is one day where we can thank police in Pittsburgh and nationwide for all they do. It is called Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. This nationwide effort is organized by a nonprofit called Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.).
As of today the main hall of the City-County Building is decorated in BLUE in support of Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. You can engage in showing support tomorrow and everyday by following the lead of residents who are members of the resident public safety councils and block watches. They encourage you to:

  • See a police officer? Thank a police officer.
  • Wear blue clothing in support of law enforcement
  • Send a card of support to your local police department or state agency
  • Share a positive story about a positive law enforcement experience on social media
  • Ask children in your community to write letters in support of law enforcement
  • Participate in Project Blue Light. Proudly display your blue light in support of law enforcement.
  • Organize an event or a rally in support of your law enforcement officers

While the news media has been full of stories regarding police misconduct and brutality, the reality is also that the vast majority of police officers go to work everyday wanting to do their part to keep everyone safer, and make our communities better.

I believe one of the best steps we can take in any effort to eliminate police brutality, is to treat all police as professional police and as individuals and not lump them together with some over simplified and stereotypical criticisms. We have to support and acknowledge the valuable role many police play if we expect to hold others accountable for any efforts that fall short of professionalism. We cannot perpetuate  the fallacious idea that it is an us vs them divide. We have to all be in it together, if we want to see improved public safety.

I also firmly believe that some of the general public’s outrage at some recent police incidents is fully justified, but allowing that outrage to make the far greater number of great cops invisible doesn’t help fix the problems, rather is slows the pace of change.

Comments are closed.