Faith, Law come together at food distribution event
By Tia Lynn Ivey
If you drove by the original Middle School in Madison last Saturday, you would have seen a sea of light blue t-shirts and the sounds of gospel music. A special Faith and Blue event was held at the weekly Grocery Giveaway Saturday morning, drawing over 100 people to volunteer and to celebrate.
Local law enforcement agents partnered with community leaders to distribute food to families in need. The event was in honor of a national movement called Faith and Blue. Last weekend was declared National Faith and Blue weekend in which people of faith all across the country held community events with local law enforcement members.
“I feel extremely blessed to live in Morgan County,” said Morgan County Sheriff Robert Markley. “This Faith and Blue movement demonstrates the necessity for peaceful police to partner with faith-based and civic organizations to deliver community policing that prioritizes faith, family and service.”
Officers from Morgan County and the City of Madison were there assembling boxes and giving away food outside. A slew of church and civic leaders and community groups also attended, such as Madison Mayor Fred Perriman, County Commissioner Donald Harris, and Reverend Robert Terrell. The Boy Scouts also came out to help with the grocery giveaway. More than 150 boxes of groceries were given away to families in need.
Faith and Blue is an initiative that aims to reinforce “connections between law enforcement professional and the communities they serve.”
According to Markley, police officers must invest in the communities they serve to develop and maintain a good relationship.
“It’s not just something we can expect,” said Markley. “We have to work on it. It takes continual maintenance to keep that relationship appropriate.”
Madison Mayor Fred Perriman praised local police officers for the work they do each day.
“Our police have a good relationship with our community,” said Perriman. “This was a tremendous event that bridged together our community. We were working as one. It gives us the hope that we really are united and we really are One Morgan and we just want to keep that momentum going.”
Every week, families in need can pick up a box of groceries for free from the original Middle School on Pearl Street, every Saturday at 11 a.m.
“National Faith & Blue Weekend is based on the premise that strong communities are built on mutual respect and understanding. Law enforcement and faith institutions are key pillars of each community, and when they work together, neighborhoods thrive,” said the movement’s website. “The National Faith & Blue Weekend organizers represent every major national law enforcement membership and professional organization in the United States and every faith tradition. The effort is being co-convened by MovementForward, Inc. and the USDOJ Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. National Faith & Blue Weekend is sponsored by FirstNet Built with AT&T along with the Motorola Solutions Foundation and Wrap Technologies.”