Clark County Sheriff Atkins explains his heart for display of support
RIDGEFIELD — On Friday last week, well over 100 cars joined a parade of support for law enforcement across Clark County. Joining community members was Clark County Fire & Rescue and Clark County Sheriff Chuck Atkins.
“What I really want, the message to be is, as a community member, I appreciate them and so I wanted to be here with the rest and just drive through my personal vehicle,” Atkins said. “Anytime we show appreciation to the law enforcement, the first responders, the firemen, everybody that’s involved in public safety for our community, any way is a good way.”
The parade comes after a difficult week in Clark County law enforcement, with the controversial removal of all “Thin Blue Line” symbols from the Sheriff’s Office and Vancouver Police Department (VPD) vehicles, uniforms and offices at the request of the NAACP Vancouver Branch.
VPD Chief McElvain endured criticism after being accused of taking down a similar display to the signage at the parade from one of his precincts. McElvain explained he did not order the removal, and did not discourage appreciation for law enforcement even in the recent “Thin Blue Line” decision.
The parade went first to the Sheriff’s Office west precinct in Ridgefield and then to the Washington State Patrol and VPD precincts in Vancouver.