Policing with Embrace: How Officer Norman Loves His Community | Christ and Pop Culture

A teddy bear probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of police gear. But for Officer Tommy Norman of the North Little Rock Police Department, teddy bears are essential equipment. You can find them in the trunk of his squad car, nestled right next to a cooler full of cold drinks and packages of chips. When Officer Norman patrols the inner city neighborhoods of downtown North Little Rock, kids run up to his police car while others rush to tell their friends and family members that “Officer Norman has arrived!” These are not cries of fear but cries of pure joy as they sprint up to the rolled down window of Norman’s car (sometimes even forgetting to stop!) to greet the officer who always addresses them by name and reminds them that they’re his “buddies.”

Norman’s famous trunk is a treasure trove of goodies for the kids he sees on a daily basis. And he makes an extra effort to visit these same children every day, even if his day is extremely busy. He believes that “just two minutes” can have a powerful impact on a child’s life, and that the contact, care, and showing of love must all be consistent in order to build an actual relationship. He also knows that the small gifts he gives to the children he serves — e.g., cold drinks, candy, stickers, his own business card, blue bracelets that say “Be Kind” on them — are “like pots of gold when they come from the hand of a police officer.” (Norman recently learned that the business card he gave to an eight-year-old boy was placed on his nightstand; it’s the first thing he sees in the morning and the last thing he sees at night. Such a small thing became a precious reminder of the security and love provided by his friend, Officer Norman.)

Source: Policing with Embrace: How Officer Norman Loves His Community | Christ and Pop Culture

#leadership #realheroes #publicsafety #police #lawenforcement #community

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