Too often the community has contact with law enforcement during a stressful situation that wouldn’t be considered “ideal.” The Potter County Sheriff Deputies are working to change that, through a community outreach program they are calling Coffee with a Cop.
“We want to encourage and promote a close working relationship between the community and law enforcement,” said Chief Deputy Travis Carlson. The time will provide a chance to meet the new members of the department and put faces with names. He said that during the coffee time, there is no agenda — and no speeches. “It’s just an opportunity for the community to sit down with the local law enforcement and talk about what matters to them,” said Chief Deputy Carlson. He said that could be anything, from weather, sports, family, local happenings, or time to ask a question or voice a concern.
He said that Coffee with a Cop is a nationwide program that the local department has adopted, believing it will be beneficial to the community. He said the mission of Coffee with a Cop is to break down the barriers between law enforcement officers and the citizens they serve. Taking time to meet at neutral locations provides the opportunity for real conversations about issues that matter, one cup of coffee at a time.
They are planning to have these events quarterly, and the coffee and conversation are free. The places hosting the events have donated the coffee. “If people want to make a donation to the host they certainly can,” he said.
Get to know the new deputies in Potter County. The first coffee time will be held on Saturday, May 23 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Coffee Bean in the 212 Mini Mall in Gettysburg.
Sunday, May 24, the event will be held in Hoven at the Dakota Haus Bar and Grill from 10 a.m. to noon.