Some locals are proudly displaying blue ribbons in their yards and offices in a show of support for law enforcement officers.
Madeline Edwards of Paradis is one such person. Edwards has tied a large blue ribbon around a tree to signal her thanks for the hard work and risk officers take every single day, noting she got the idea from her sister.
“She lives in New Jersey, and she told me about the campaign up there to thank police and show support,” Edwards said. “People up there are upset that so much negativity is coming about (in relation to police officers). So they’ve said, ‘We’re gonna show some positive support with the blue ribbon.’
She thought it would be a great thing to start down here and Edwards agreed.
“So I went out and bought a blue ribbon yesterday,” she said. “But it’s not going to mean anything unless people know what the point is, about the blue ribbon and what it represents.”
First National Bank of Boutte has also made a display of support for the police, displaying a message of “Pray for law enforcement” on its rotating sign outside, as well as displaying blue ribbons both indoors and outdoors.
“When Bobby Jindal declared Sept. 14 as a day of prayer for law enforcement, we decided we wanted to do something,” said Audrey Raziano of First National Bank. “They’re out there busting their butts and risking their lives to help us, and we want them to know we’re behind them and that we truly appreciate them and the sacrifices they make.”
Law enforcement entities as a whole have suffered in recent times, nationally, after negative reports and backlash spawning from incidents where police brutality has been alleged.
Sheriff Greg Champagne has taken note of the building support among local citizens and offered his gratitude. “We owe a great debt of appreciation to the citizens of St. Charles Parish,” Champagne said. “Many have described the current atmosphere of hate directed towards law enforcement as our darkest days. This is true, but not here in St. Charles Parish, where our citizens wholeheartedly support us. We thank you for that.”
Edwards said that at times, she’s needed a hand from the police, and they’ve always come through for her.
“The police here have been so good,” Edwards said. “The local police … they’re very attentive. I’ve needed them on a couple occasions and they’ve always been right there. They’ve always been there for me. This is just something I wanted to do to give back.”