On January 9th, 2015, partnering organizations in support of law enforcement officers nationwide will promote a National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (L.E.A.D.). In light of recent negativity directed toward law enforcement nationally, there is a need to show law enforcement officers that our citizens recognize the difficult and sometimes impossible career they have chosen, in public service to us all.
Each day 780,000 police officers across our country put a badge on and go to work knowing they may face extremely dangerous situations. On average, between 105 and 203 officers die in the line of duty each year, 50,000 officers are assaulted in the line of duty each year, 14,000 officers are injured in the line of duty each year, and over 300 officers commit suicide each year. In 2014, Arizona lost six officers. There is no other profession in the world, except possibly the military, where you will find these kinds of statistics.
Law enforcement officers play such an integral part in our society. Without law enforcement officers, chaos would reign. Have you ever thought about what you would do if you were in trouble – a car accident, a home invasion, an assault – and you did not have someone to call for help? No matter how much abuse law enforcement takes, they continue to do their job, and do it well. They are the guardians of our way of life and they deserve our support.
On January 9th, we call our nation’s citizens to action in support of law enforcement. Those citizens who appreciate law enforcement and are discouraged about the negative attention being given to law enforcement are encouraged to take time on Friday, January 9, to show their support. Our citizens can show their support in a number of ways:
* Wear blue clothing in support of law enforcement
* Send a card of support to your local police department or state agency
* Share a 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
* Advertise your support through local media outlets/billboards
* Post the public service announcement supplied by C.O.P.S. to your organization’s webpage or social media pages
* Most importantly, if you see a police officer, thank a police officer.
National Law Enforcement Organizations that are partnering together include: Concerns of Police Survivors, The Fraternal Order of Police, The FBI National Academy Associates, The National Organization of Black Law Enforcement, Officer Down Memorial Page, Law Enforcement United, National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, International Conference of Police Chaplains, National Trooper’s Coalition, Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, National Police Wives, Wives Behind the Badge, International Union of Police Associations, New Jersey State PBA, National Association of Women Law Enforcement Executives, National Sheriffs’ Association, Thin Line Support, Police Unity Tour, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors, and the United States Air Force Security Forces.
About Concerns of Police Survivors (C.O.P.S.) Arizona: An affiliate of C.O.P.S., a national organization launched in 1984 now more than 15,000 families strong, C.O.P.S. Arizona offers resources to aid families and affected co-workers of law enforcement officials killed in the line of duty, as determined by Federal criteria. Additionally, C.O.P.S. offers training to law enforcement agencies pertinent to survivor victimization issues and educates the public about the importance of supporting those employed in law enforcement. Their website is www.copsarizona.org, Facebook: www.facebook.com/copsarizona or Twitter www.twitter.com/copsarizona.