Members of the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office Community Engagement Unit were recognized during a special service at the Shiloh Church in Smyrna, Ga., on October 8, 2022. The program was in honor of Law Enforcement Emphasis Day at the church, which coincided with the Faith & Blue weekend held nationwide October 7-10, 2022. Faith & Blue consists of four days of locally organized community-officer engagement as part of the nation’s largest annual collaborative policing initiative. The officers shared gifts and greetings and took photos with church members after the service.
“We believe communities are stronger and safer when residents and law enforcement professionals can relate as ordinary people with shared values, hopes, and dreams,” said Omar Newell, Cobb County deputy, who is also a member of Shiloh Church. “We believe we can find ways to work together around our many commonalities instead of being divided by our differences.”
The Cobb County Sheriff’s Office Community Engagement Unit works with local organizations to bridge the gap between the community and law enforcement. One of the most effectives way to do this is for law enforcement to connect with local churches. Faith-based organizations are key to building these bonds because they are not only the largest community resource in the nation, with 65 million participants in weekly events, but because they are as diverse as our nation. Moreover, they speak to Americans’ shared conviction that we are our brothers’ and sisters’ keepers.*
“The faith-based community needs law enforcement, and law enforcement needs the faith-based community,” said Newell. “We are stronger when we work together.”
South Atlantic | January 2023