Chief Jarvie: Banding Together is the Only Answer

Chief Jarvie: Banding Together is the Only Answer

GREEN RIVER — Green River Police Chief Tom Jarvie released a letter on Thursday morning, addressing his department’s role in the enforcement of the mask mandate.

Jarvie highlighted the importance of banding together to be effective and protect the public’s health. He also added that it will be the individuals that protect the community and not the police alone.

Read Jarvie’s full statement below.

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The Green River Police Department has received numerous requests for information
regarding enforcement of the recently approved Public Health Order (2020-3) that went into
effect November 18th, which requires facial coverings in certain conditions.

It is important to emphasize the role of peace officers is not to control the communities they
serve, but to work in concert with those communities to promote public safety. We are called on
to serve the community; to safeguard lives and property; to protect the innocent against
deception, the weak against oppression or intimidation and the peaceful against violence or

We do this in a wide variety of ways in an effort to bring the community together to address
these safety issues. While it is common to associate law enforcement with making arrests or
writing citations, we also work through public education, issue press releases, speak to schools
and civic groups, and work with local service and faith bases organizations. To be effective, our
enforcement goals need broad community support.

This is a time where banding together as a community is the only answer. Having worked with
Dr. Stachon, we know the current order has been issued out of concern for our community and
the most vulnerable members of it based on her thoughtful assessment of the information she has
available to her. The increased cases are creating additional strains on our community health
care system and those who serve it.

We encourage everyone to consider others at this time. Your friends, families and neighbors
may be affected or vulnerable in ways you do not know. Businesses need to stay open and they
must balance their customers different desires with regulations imposed on them and potential
legal consequences of their actions. We believe the majority of our community will visibly wear
face coverings as outlined in the order. We know some will not be able to wear face coverings
for various legitimate and lawfully exempted reasons.

We must and will take all of these factors into consideration if we receive complaints
regarding this health order. Any action we take will be consistent with the law as it is currently

In the end, it will not be law enforcement action that protects our community. It is the actions
each of us, as members of the community, choose to take. We again encourage thoughtful
consideration from each of you as you make those decisions. We appreciate your diligence in
keeping us all safe and keeping us open.