Wash. county sheriff tells employees to remove 'thin blue line' flag
“I'm not gonna let that little sticker be the divide among people in the community who will be afraid to come to us because of that," Sheriff Chuck Atkins said
By Suzie Ziegler
CLARK COUNTY, Wash. — A sheriff in Washington state has directed workers to remove all depictions of the thin blue line from sheriff's office property amid mounting tensions between law enforcement and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Sheriff Chuck Atkins with the Clark County Sheriff's Office told KPTV that his decision stems from a desire to heal his community. Speaking at a Juneteenth webinar with the NAACP, Atkins said he didn't want the symbol to be a reason citizens might be afraid to come to his deputies.
“I'm not gonna let that little sticker be the divide among people in the community who will be afraid to come to us because of that,” Atkins said. “I will remove that sticker, we're still the same people. So, I hope the actions they see we take says we want to be part of the solution.”
While Sheriff Atkins says he has received some blowback from members of law enforcement after his decision, he says he still believes it's the right one. The sheriff's office confirmed to KPTV that all of its thin blue line stickers had been removed by Tuesday.