Trouble Giving Away Thin Blue Line Pens

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Gregf

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Joined
May 22, 2010
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426
Location
Richwood, OH
Just curious if others have had trouble giving TBL pens to officers.
Issue related to officers not accepting gifts.

No problem with the city and county so far.

I made an enquiry into the Ohio Highway Patrol, wanting to send pens to troopers involved in 'incidents'.
The answer was they would have to return it, notify their supervisor etc..
I understand the issue.
Today a pen, tomorrow a car, boat or vacation homes in Florida.:wink:

Maybe the mistake was asking.
 
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Hutch9022

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Sep 24, 2018
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Georgia USA
I’m a deputy sheriff. Our policies state that we can not receive any gifts or discounts. This policy is not enforced unless you receive the gift as a bribe. The policy is an ethical policy. I would suggest making several and give them out to a group of officers that way it doesn’t look like you are trying to get a favor from one certain officer. Also try smaller departments rather then the state police agency.


Sent from my iPhone using Penturners.org mobile app
 

Gregf

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May 22, 2010
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Location
Richwood, OH
I absolutely understand the policy, and the reasons.
As the email said they have to be consistent.
I wonder if I would have gotten a different answer if I had started with the superintendent?
A letter with an included pen.
(PSI TEC gunmetal and a blue line flag label make stunning pens.)

The county sheriff's office so far is ok with this, as well as the city PD.
I even have an email from the Cols. PD to that effect. The Asst. to the Chief forwards pens for me.
I sent pens to the Therapy K9 unit with their dog's pics on the pen.

Most of my pens have gone to injured officers.
Some as the result of an article in the paper or FB post of something positive they have done.
Actually none have been face to face.

I work in Columbus, but live in a small village.
I'm thinking a making a pen for all of the village officers for Police Week.
All 10 of them. We'll see how that goes.
 
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mbroberg

IAP Activities Manager, Emeritus
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Mar 9, 2009
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Columbus, OH
Cut and paste from the Columbus, OH Division of Police Rules of Conduct. (I spent 35 years there with supervisory assignments in Internal Affairs and Professional Standards:))



1.23 Gratuities
Division personnel shall not solicit or accept from any person, business,
or organization any tangible or intangible property, promise, or service, or
in any way use their official position if it may be reasonably inferred that
private interests conflict with police duties and responsibilities.


The key issue is whether "it may be reasonably inferred that
private interests conflict with police duties and responsibilities." Sending the pens to the office of the chief, as you do for Columbus PD, removes that inference. Perhaps you should try that route with any PD of an officer you wish to send a pen to.


Thank you for your support of police officers.


Mike
 

JohnU

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Jan 31, 2008
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Location
Ottawa, Illinois
From my experience, a 27 year stretch in a Sheriff's Office and current administrator, I can say it doesn't surprise me that you got a response like that from a State Agency. That's politics. I'm sure most of those guys would really appreciate the thought and your generous gift, they just don't want to risk getting in trouble from the top.

When in doubt, mail some to the department with a nice letter. Let them hand them out. I'm sure they would appreciate your support. I know I do.
 

gtriever

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Apr 23, 2017
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Paducah, Kentucky
From my experience, a 27 year stretch in a Sheriff's Office and current administrator, I can say it doesn't surprise me that you got a response like that from a State Agency. That's politics. I'm sure most of those guys would really appreciate the thought and your generous gift, they just don't want to risk getting in trouble from the top.

When in doubt, mail some to the department with a nice letter. Let them hand them out. I'm sure they would appreciate your support. I know I do.
As a retiree from a state agency, I agree with you about the politics at the top. I have to disagree with mailing some to the department and letting them hand them out. Too many times, things wind up in the hands of the brass and the good old boys at HQ and never make it to the rank and file, who would deserve and appreciate the gesture.
 

Woodchipper

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Mar 15, 2017
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Cleveland, TN
1.23 Gratuities
Division personnel shall not solicit or accept from any person, business,
or organization any tangible or intangible property, promise, or service, or
in any way use their official position if it may be reasonably inferred that
private interests conflict with police duties and responsibilities.
Sell them for a dollar. They have to buy pens somewhere.
 

Gregf

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Joined
May 22, 2010
Messages
426
Location
Richwood, OH
I haven't given up on the OSHP, will keep any eye out for an alternate approach. Maybe make friends in the governor's office. I know they won't turn down pens.
 

OLDMAN5050

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May 8, 2007
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Location
Unionville, tn, USA.
Send one to me I am a retired Deputy Sheriff and one for my son who is a Captain with Metro Nashville Police dept. I have not been able to get into my shop for almost 2 years due to a terminal illness..
 

RVA_Tyndall

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Mar 14, 2019
Messages
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There might be a path forward with police fraternal or protection leagues. My dad was with the LAPD for 36 years and they are not unionized by they have an employee protection league that organizes family/education events, advocates for officers, and provides legal services.


https://m.facebook.com/?_rdr#!/rvatyndall/
 

moke

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Dec 30, 2009
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Location
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
I was a Police Officer for 38 years. I believe our policy read, that you may not take any thing in consideration for an act you may have performed. That is a poor paraphrase, but it was something like that.

I also agree that if you send it to the Dept, they will be taken by the people that are there when it is received. If it is the day, it will be the management and older patrolman. The guys that could really use and appreciate them would be the poor newer guys working nights and over nights. Maybe deliver them to the "Commander of Patrol" with a note to distribute them to a certain group of your choosing. We would occasionally get things, monogrammed stocking hats comes to mind....I saw a Clerk's husband and two children each wearing them to shovel their drive one time.
 
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MTViper

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Jul 22, 2009
Messages
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Location
Clyde, Texas
I am a city councilman in a small west Texas town. I have turned TBL pens for each of our existing officers and every new one that comes to town. I give them to the Chief with instructions that he is to tell them they are "from a grateful citizen". I'm not worried about getting credit, and not looking for a break from them. It's worked for a few years here, at least so far.
 

Gregf

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May 22, 2010
Messages
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Location
Richwood, OH
I am a city councilman in a small west Texas town. I have turned TBL pens for each of our existing officers and every new one that comes to town. I give them to the Chief with instructions that he is to tell them they are "from a grateful citizen". I'm not worried about getting credit, and not looking for a break from them. It's worked for a few years here, at least so far.
I'll probably use that approach for the local PD for police week.
Thx
 

mmayo

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Jan 12, 2013
Messages
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Location
Tehachapi, CA
Firemen accept pens, but nothing was requested by me in return. I gave pens to all the crew at a local fire station and returned the next day to give them to the other shift of firefighters. I give them fresh fish, baked goods and will soon give them a premium cutting board. In a fire prone area they work hard every year to keep all of us safe and thus deserve it. So far the police have not been included.
 

arioux

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Jan 20, 2005
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Terrebonne, Quebec, Canada.
I'm in Canada, in the Montreal area. Each year, our police department old 3 different Chrismass supper (to cover everyone). I send to the police department 3 batch of 15 pens each year to offer as a drawing during their supper. I write a note, thanking everyone for their services thuout the year. Never had trouble with it and received many nice thank you letters from the winners. Don't know about US law, but i,m sure if you "depersonnalize" the gift and make it availeble to the "group" it should be ok.
 

firewhatfire

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Mar 7, 2011
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Columbiana, Alabama
I gave a pen to the Governor of Alabama, he had to claim it at as a gift also. I also sold some to the governors office to give as gift to foreign dignitaries. They also have to claim them as gifts.

I had a lengthy discussion about it with them.

I haven't given up on the OSHP, will keep any eye out for an alternate approach. Maybe make friends in the governor's office. I know they won't turn down pens.
 
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