Cops keepin it cool with the kids in East Bridgewater
By Shannon Gallgher, The Enterprise
Original article HERE
Local students started off their Friday at school with a little extra motivation from the East Bridgewater Police officers.
“Every kid at the schools got a fist pump going into school today,” East Bridgewater Police Chief Scott Allen said.
About half a dozen police officers met students as they arrived at the doors of Gordon Mitchell Middle and Central Elementary schools and gave each student a fist pump on their way into the building today.
This was East Bridgewater’s first “Fist pump Friday” event: a community policing initiative that officers said they may begin to carry out more frequently in order to interact with the children and allow them to become more comfortable being around police officers and their intimidating uniform.
“We like to engage with the kids and the schools,” said Sgt. Steve Brown who is the designated community policing officer.
Community policing initiatives like this one allow kids to become more comfortable being around police, officers said.
“I was expecting a shy kid that kind of turned his nose but they were all for it,” said Officer Ryan Cramer. “They all had big smiles on. They enjoyed it.”
After greeting the last several students with a fist pump on Friday, police officers headed to the Dunkin Donuts on Plymouth Street to host the second annual Coffee with a Cop Day event.
Young kids and their parents streamed into the donut shop to meet with police Friday morning.
When students were released early from school ahead of parent-teacher conferences, Some students joined officers for a coffee, purchased courtesy of the police department.
“I think people are surprised by it,” Sgt. Brown said. “They’re like, ‘you want to buy us coffee? You don’t want to give us a ticket?,'”
Community policing is a major priority for the department, which is dedicated to building a trusted relationship with the public.
“We want people to understand we’re going to be there when there’s a problem but we’re also here to be part of the community,” Chief Allen said.