In an era when a certain segment of America’s population attempts to vilify the men and women of law enforcement who risk their lives to serve and protect the innocent, the officers and staff of the Palmetto Police Department are feeling the love.
And what better way to show a little love than with a lot of food.
Treys of lasagna, boxes of cookies, bags of rolls and about 250 homemade meatballs and sauce greeted members of the Palmetto Police Department on Tuesday as Waste Management’s way of saying “thank you,” said Waste Management’s Rose Quin-Bare.
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“It’s a way to show our local police departments that we love them and appreciate them every minute of every day,” Quin-Bare said.
Police Chief Scott Tyler said the Palmetto community doesn’t fail to show its first responders that they are cared for and appreciated.
“The tremendous outpouring of support for us at the police department and emergency services people has been overwhelming,” Tyler said. “It means the world to us that people do support our officers and care about them.”
I can’t tell you how much it means to us and what a morale boost it is to our officers.
Palmetto Police Chief Scott Tyler
The Waste Management luncheon was the latest event for the police department. A landscaping company, assisted by Palmetto High School students, will re-landscape the outside of the department on Wednesday morning. Just a few weeks ago, Lowe’s Hometown Hero program donated time and materials to renovate the department’s conference room.
Tyler said funding would never allow such things to happen without the community stepping in to help. From students leading a thank you card drive, to random letters of support from the community, to the 53rd Avenue Christian Church ensuring officers working through the Thanksgiving weekend enjoyed a holiday meal, “I can’t tell you how much it means to us and what a morale boost it is to our officers,” Tyler said.
Quin-Bare said the Palmetto luncheon was the first of three being planned for local law enforcement agencies. It is a way to show appreciation as well as celebrate the company’s long partnership with law enforcement through the Waste Watch program.
The program trains sanitation crews to be extra eyes for police and emergency services personnel while conducting routes in the early hours of each day.
When they see something unusual, they are trained to call it in to dispatch and the word gets out from there.
Waste Management’s Rose Quin-Bare on the Waste Watch program
Quin-Bare said the program is a success, including a recent capture of a burglar when crews spotted a suspicious person digging through fishing equipment in a resident’s home who they knew didn’t live there.
“Our drivers are our greatest assets,” Quin-Bare said. “When they see something unusual, they are trained to call it in to dispatch and the word gets out from there.”