FFRF stops distribution of religious-coded coin (February 7, 2023)

A Washington police department will no longer distribute coins with Christian iconography and bible verses on them after FFRF got involved.

A concerned resident of West Richland, Wash., informed FFRF of a coin that had been minted by the West Richland Police Department. The coin featured a Latin cross on one side, as well as a list of several bible verses on the other side underneath “Chief Tom Grego.”

“While you are certainly entitled to hold whatever religious beliefs you want, you cannot use your position as police chief to advance those beliefs using the resources of the police department,” FFRF Staff Attorney Chris Line wrote in a letter to Police Chief Tom Grego.

In early February 2023, FFRF received a letter from Bronson Brown, legal counsel representing the West Richland Police Department. Brown assured FFRF that the city took steps to ensure that no city funding was spent to produce the coins, as well as assuring that distribution of the coins had ceased. “The city and Chief Grego never intended to create any divisive message or alienate any portion of city residents,” Brown wrote.

 

Freedom From Religion Foundation