To the Editor,
This is in response to Jim Burns criticizing the Hinckley Police Association’s Back-to-School event.
Hinckley Police Department hosts its annual Cops, Kids and Claus event, during which our members and volunteers take select children Christmas shopping, thanks to generous donations. We provide breakfast, gift cards and lunch.
Several years ago, we recognized many children weren’t prepared for the school year, which is how the Back-to-School event evolved. We were approached by owners of 1st Day School Supplies, who generously offered to donate supplies and backpacks to select children. In August, the children were driven in police cars to 1st Day School Supplies.
Burns alleged Trustees Jack Swedyk and Monique Ascherl planned this parade for themselves. This event is planned entirely by the police association. We rely on volunteers including Hinckley officers and their spouses who donate their time to help. Swedyk volunteered as liaison to the police department, while Ascherl has volunteered for many years as the spouse of an officer.
Burns questioned why kids from Brunswick Schools weren’t included. The police association obtains information on candidates through various sources. Children are included in the program regardless of their school district. This year’s event included Highland, Cloverleaf, Black River, Medina and Wadsworth students.
It’s disappointing that Burns shed a negative light on an event in which countless officers, spouses and volunteers donate time to give back to the community trying to improve the quality of life for our residents and neighbors.
The Hinckley Police Association
1410 Ridge Rd.