A Message from Sheriff Scott Israel
SEASON OF GIVING BACK AND MOVING FORWARD
Each holiday season, I reflect on the year past and give thanks for all life has provided. I am blessed with a brilliant, caring and beautiful wife, amazing and thoughtful children and good health. I also wake up every day humbled and grateful to serve the good people of Broward in the greatest job in the world.
For many, however, the holidays are far from joyous. Sadly, many in our county struggle with day-to-day needs and are unable to put food on their tables – let alone buy gifts for their kids. No child should spend Christmas hungry. No parent should have to explain to their children why they didn’t receive a gift for Hanukkah.
This holiday season, as in years past, the Broward Sheriff’s Office is doing its part through a variety of events and causes to provide a helping hand to lighten the burden, bring some joy and provide some hope for those struggling. One of our flagship events is “Bytes for Champions,” where school-aged children, chosen by their school resource deputy, will receive a tablet computer. The cause both awards deserving children and provides an educational component. We also distribute hundreds of turkey dinners to upwards of 2,000 people in need who would otherwise go without.
We couldn’t do this without the support of numerous partners, including both the Broward Sheriff's Advisory Council and the Sheriff's Foundation of Broward County. These two incredible non-profit organizations provide year-round support to public safety in Broward and also to our community as a whole.
While December may be the season of giving, our commitment to Broward’s communities extends year-round at BSO. Partnering up with a variety of altruistic businesses and charities – which defrays the cost to taxpayers – BSO hosts or sponsors a multitude of events ranging from grocery giveaways to charitable causes benefitting children with special needs. During one recent event, BSO and 25 Broward middle school students embarked on a four-hour fishing excursion as part of BSO’s “Cops and Kids United” initiative, a program created to build positive interactions between children and law enforcement.
Why do we do this? As Sheriff, it is my job to ensure the safety of all Broward residents. I know the best way to protect Broward is not only to catch bad guys who committed a crime, but to prevent crime from occurring in the first place. Helping to relieve the stresses of hopelessness, frustration and despair is part of the solution. Proactive policies, such as community policing, strike at the heart of the problem before it spirals out of control. Troubled individuals are far more likely to steer clear of crime when their basic needs for food, shelter and treatment are met.
The men and women of BSO give their time and devote their lives to ensure the betterment of our community. We’re not just here to protect you from danger and respond to life-threatening emergencies. Our jobs, our mission and our commitment lie in how we can make the lives of all Broward residents better. Like I always say: BSO is much more than just a law enforcement agency -- we’re part of the community.
To all my friends and neighbors: Have a healthy, happy and safe holiday season.
Sheriff Scott Israel
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