While many law enforcement officers are issued duty gear and armor by their agency at no personal cost, there are thousands of officers who work in dangerous environments without the benefit of ballistic vests or other equipment that allow them to do their jobs safely and effectively.
Many times, it is the small-town officer or those working in agencies with limited budgets that must purchase their own equipment or be forced to go without. But one company doesn’t want to see the officers going without protective gear.
“We are a small department and budget restraints prevent us from equipping our officers with the latest safety equipment,” said Randall, a police officer from a small town in Arkansas. “We had an officer killed here in 1997. A vest then might have saved his life.”
Taking action, Acuity International, a leading provider of professional services for the U.S. government and commercial clients worldwide, is donating a variety of law enforcement equipment to a Tennessee-based non-profit as well as law enforcement agencies throughout the South.
Many law enforcement officers are provided new ballistic vests by their agency every five years because most manufacturers of ballistic armor set five years as the limit to how long they will warranty their product. However, while the manufacturer’s warranty may be expired, the vest can still effectively protect officers who would not otherwise have one.
Acuity recently contributed operationally effective bulletproof vests, helmets, and armored plates to St. Michael’s Shield Project. St. Michael’s Shield Project is a non-profit based out of Knoxville that tests and supplies armor to U.S. law enforcement professionals whose organizations cannot afford to supply them.
“We are grateful to Acuity for supporting our mission to protect those who protect us,” said St. Michael’s Shield Project Director, Commander Doug Kiser. “Through the efforts of a small cadre of volunteers and other supporters, thousands of ballistic vests have been given out and lives have been saved.”
In addition to providing hard and soft armor to St. Michael’s Shield Project, Acuity has donated handcuffs, flashlights and batons to Lenoir City Police Department in Tennessee and Brevard County Sheriff’s Office in Florida.
“Like most law enforcement agencies in the United States, annual operating budgets are limited,” stated Commander Andrew Walters from the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office in Florida. “Acuity’s donation of equipment to our agency allows us to use funds normally allocated for supplies and training to support other important initiatives for our community.”
“We are honored to support the officers that selflessly risk their lives protecting us,” said Acuity CEO, Bob Stalick. “Our goal is to save lives and prevent families from enduring the tragedy of losing a loved one.” Stalick encourages other companies with similar resources to make donations to St. Michael’s Shield Project and small police departments in their area.
St. Michael’s Shield Project is supported financially through individual donors, churches and businesses. If you or your company would like to help distribute free ballistic vests and other armor to law enforcement professionals in need, you can make a tax-deductible donation to The St. Michael’s Shield Project, Inc. (Tax ID: 83-1874520), which is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
To learn how your company or organization can make an in-kind contribution, please contact St. Michael’s Shield Project Director, Doug Kiser at firstname.lastname@example.org or a local law enforcement agency near you.
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