Citizens Behind the Badge

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POTTSVILLE -- Many businesses in Pottsville are sporting new signs on their store front and blue ribbons line North Centre Street in the city.

All of this is a message to police officers.

"We just want to show support because not many people go to work with a bullet proof chest protector on every day," said Lee Felsburg of Pottsville and one of the people behind the idea.

The signs and ribbons are part of a new idea in the city called "Citizens Behind the Badge." It's a way for people who live and work in Pottsville to stand behind their police department.

A group of business leaders in the community came up with the idea after hearing all the national news about police officers getting shot on the job.

"They're our friends, they're our neighbors and we just want to show our support," said James Morconis of Pottsville.

Jerry Labooty's father was a police officer in Minersville. He feels a plan like this one could help prevent any sort of police versus public war.

"I think we would rather be proactive than reactive should a situation arise," said Labooty.

About 100 of those signs were available for anybody to pick up here at city hall, but in less than a day all of them are gone.

"We're going to have to order more," said Felsburg.

The Pottsville police chief says the whole department loves to spot the signs around the city.

"Like any profession, some days are tougher than others. So hopefully this will give us a little extra energy when it's needed to our officers to continue the great job that they do," said Chief Richard Wojciechowsky with the Pottsville Police.

The signs are free and donated by many Pottsville businesses.

The organizers plan to have hundreds of new signs available to pick up at city hall or Greystone restaurant next week.