Fundraisers entangled with religion no longer held in Kentucky sheriff office (March 9, 2020)

The Daviess County Sheriff’s Office told FFRF it will ensure that it no longer holds fundraisers entangled with religion.

A county resident alerted FFRF to a fundraiser hosted by the sheriff’s office, which raised money for the Pleasant Grove Baptist Church. According to local news, Major Barry Smith said the donations were a “thank you” to the church for hosting a sheriff’s office banquet. The sheriff’s office had also been promoting Christianity on its official Facebook page, including posts that quote the bible and instruct readers to “remember the greatest gift ever given to mankind, the birth of the Christ child.”

FFRF Legal Fellow Dante Harootunian wrote to Sheriff Keith Cain, asking the office to redirect its fundraising efforts to a secular charity, avoid organizing official events in houses of worship and remove all religious posts from its official Facebook page.

Daviess County Attorney Claud Porter informed FFRF in a letter of response that these concerns were addressed and that the office will “ensure all its future fundraising activities, advertisements and acknowledgments meet all constitutional requirements.”

Freedom From Religion Foundation