Hardin County police offer removes cross pin from uniform (February 25, 2019)

A Hardin County officer has removed a cross pin from his uniform after FFRF brought the issue to the attention of the sheriff’s office.

A concerned Hardin County resident reported that a deputy in the sheriff’s office wears a religious pin on his official uniform; a Christian cross stylized with a star and a blue stripe. FFRF Associate Counsel Sam Grover wrote to the sheriff’s office, urging Sheriff Mark Davis to ensure the rights of conscience of all citizens in Harding County are being honored.

“As you are aware, citizens interact with and rely on law enforcement officers during some of the most urgent and vulnerable times of their lives,” Grover wrote. “These citizens should not be made to feel excluded, like political outsiders because the local government they support with their taxes oversteps its authority by prominently displaying a religious symbol on their uniform. Nor should the sheriff’s office turn religious citizens into ‘insiders.’”

Davis replied, informing FFRF that unauthorized pins or patches on officer uniforms are not allowed. The department has addressed the issue with the employee to ensure compliance.

Freedom From Religion Foundation