Honors Outstanding Officers at STOP-DWI Breakfast, Addresses Noon Rally Against Child Abuse
ERIE COUNTY, NY— Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz this morning joined elected officials and members of the law enforcement community at the 21st Annual STOP-DWI Awards breakfast. Each year the STOP-DWI office recognizes and presents awards to an officer from each of the 21 police agencies in Erie County, including the Sheriff’s office, SUNY Public Safety Departments, and two divisions of the New York State police.
“You are keeping our communities safer by preventing alcohol-related crashes and removing drunken drivers from the road,” said Poloncarz. “Erie County owes you a debt of gratitude for the work you do every day to save lives and prevent tragedies.”
Additional awards were presented to individuals from the Erie County probation department and the Office of the District Attorney. Also present were members of the Erie County Victim Impact Panel (VIP), Erie County Emergency Services, and other special guests.
At noon, Poloncarz participated in a march and rally aimed at raising awareness about the prevention of child abuse and neglect. Organized by WNY Ending Child Abuse & Neglect (WE CAN!), the event featured a march from Lafayette Square to the steps of Buffalo City Hall, followed by speakers addressing the issue of child abuse and its’ effects.
“April is Child Abuse Prevention month, and as we once again tragically saw recently, we must speak out to raise awareness about it,” said Poloncarz. “I commend the good work that WE CAN! and other agencies are doing to deal with the problem, but I want to stress that this is no longer “someone else’s problem.” Child abuse & neglect hurts children, devastates families, and weakens our community. The problem affects us all; we need to work together to find solutions.”
Events throughout April have focused on preventing child abuse & neglect while promoting better parenting skills and raising awareness of abuse indicators, whether they are physical, emotional, or sexual in nature. “Pinwheels for Prevention”, an awareness-raising campaign that incorporates the use of colorful pinwheels to call attention to abuse, has been a bright symbol of support for victims, as has April’s “Blue Ribbon Campaign” which uses blue ribbons both to memorialize children who have been touched by abuse and to send them a positive message of support.
For more information on Erie County STOP-DWI visit www.erie.gov/stopdwi/index.asp
For more information on Erie County Child Protection Services, visit www.erie.gov or call 858-6437.