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The Assembly Minority Conference

New York’s Sheriffs Make Our Communities Whole

Weekly Column from Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay

New York state’s many incredible sheriffs give our communities peace of mind by putting those they are sworn to protect above themselves. We owe them a huge debt of gratitude, and that is why this week I want to take a moment to highlight some of the incredible services they provide our state. To that end, we celebrate Sheriff’s Appreciation Week in New York from Sunday, Sept. 17 to Saturday, Sept. 23.

According to the New York State Sheriffs’ Association, the office of the sheriff has played a critical role in our criminal justice system dating back to 1777. Our history as a nation is inextricably tied to those who protect and serve their communities, and without their hard work and dedication, we would be unable to safely do many of our most basic daily activities like going to work or shopping at the grocery store. It is easy to sometimes forget law enforcement agents and other first responders are on the clock 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and it is also easy to take them for granted. But when the time comes, they are always there for us when we need them, and for that, I am eternally grateful.

I would also like to especially thank the New York State Sheriffs’ Association, which is comprised of all of our state’s 58 appointed and elected sheriffs, for all of the extra work it puts in to make sure its membership is trained, accredited and represented in governmental affairs. Its training and public safety programs are an integral part of what keeps our state safe, and I am thankful for the organization’s strong voice and advocacy for the broader law enforcement community.

It is no secret being an agent of public safety is a dangerous and challenging profession. In New York, that challenge can sometimes be amplified by misguided policies and a noticeable spike in crime. For that reason, I want to remind our sheriffs and all those who put themselves in danger for the sake of their communities that the Assembly Minority Conference sees what you do for us, and we appreciate it. We always have, and always will, stand by the law enforcement community and New York’s incredible first responders.

Over the years, the members of our Conference have worked side-by-side with the sheriffs in every region of New York to support improved public safety and increased resources for emergency responders. I’m proud of the work we’ve done together and look forward to our continued partnership. Should you come across one of New York’s many brave sheriffs, their deputies or those who support their offices, try to be cognizant of how difficult their jobs are and perhaps remind them of your gratitude. We owe much to them, and I know they appreciate hearing our thanks.