Everyone needs a little reassurance now and then.
With that in mind, the Weatherford Police Department is taking into consideration homebound residents by implementing the new Blue Line Community Connection program.
“It’s really just a neighbor-to-neighbor thing, just letting them know they are not alone,” said Weatherford Community Police Officer Paul Tumlin. “There’s a lot more to being a police officer than enforcing the law. A lot of the officers are your neighbors, friends, even family members.”
The program is designed for homebound community members wishing to be checked on by the police department. It is especially for those who live by themselves or are often home alone, notably senior citizens.
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After registering, residents can choose a time they’d like to receive a phone call from a member of the police department to make sure they’re OK. If the news is good, both go about their day and an officer will call at the next scheduled time.
If, however, no contact is made, an officer will try again the next day. If that results in no contact, an officer is dispatched to perform a welfare check at the residence.
“Say, for example, you’ve got an elderly female, living by herself. She just wants to hear a friendly voice, and to have someone there in case she does need help,” Tumlin said.
Weatherford Police Chief Lance Arnold, who wrapped up his first year leading the force in July, said such a program goes back to the department’s mission statement.
“It’s our mission to enrich our community,” he said. “We’re not just part of the community, we should always be asking how can we make our community better.
“Youth and seniors are vulnerable populations that people can take advantage of. Plus, especially with seniors, just a simple conversation or phone call enlightens their day.”
Arnold said the program will also use several Weatherford High School seniors, along with some Weatherford College students, as interns to help officers with their visits.
“It’s a great learning opportunity for them. It’s a 2-for-1 really. They’re becoming fulfilled by helping us,” Arnold said.
To sign up for the program, stop by the Weatherford Police Department, call 682-229-2612 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“If this was your grandmother, wouldn’t you want someone to check on her?” Tumlin said.