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Position Statement

I strongly believe in community policing, and I’ve practiced it throughout my career. To me it means creating a network of relationships and trust between the staff and all kinds of people. It means returning phone calls and checking in on people and reaching out to people who won’t be coming to a “Coffee with a Cop.” It means face to face contact with people in need, and an open-door policy at the Sheriff’s Office where anyone is welcome to come talk to the Sheriff about their concerns. As your Sheriff I will ensure a caring, trustworthy, helpful, and dependable group of deputies and corrections staff that treat others how they would want to be treated and how they would want their loved ones treated.

We must follow through on some things we have started but have not finished. Over the last 4 years we have had some training programs that need to be repeated, completed, and expanded upon. De-escalation training, which is one of these, is very important in a rural county with limited resources. We need to provide the deputies with more than the state required bare-bones minimum. Domestic violence and sexual assault crimes are very concerning to me. The victims of these crimes need the most compassionate treatment we can give them, and collecting evidence takes specific skills. We need more training. We need to receive refresher training on domestic violence and we need to improve our procedures to provide the victims with the service they deserve. As your Sheriff I would assure this becomes a reality.

Much of what we deal with in law enforcement is society’s failure to deal with its issues. Many of the people we contact struggle with substance abuse, mental illness, or both. They need to be accountable for their actions, but we also need to show some understanding. As your Sheriff, I will bring more training to the deputies and jail personnel in how to deal with these challenges. And I will do my best to raise awareness in the community and partner with other agencies to work on addressing these concerns. Mental Health Court and Drug Court are just the beginning.

In my 28 years at the Sheriff’s Office I have never seen employee morale so low. Low morale makes us less effective in performing our duties and some good people have already left for other jobs. Others are waiting for the results of this election to decide whether to stay or leave. I can raise the morale of the staff. Leadership from the top is sorely needed. I lead by example. I will really listen to and communicate with the staff: what we are doing and why we are doing it. I will provide direction, clear expectations and the training and tools to make those expectations a reality.

I would not continue the Operation Stonegarden grant in which we are partnered with the Border Patrol to assist them in their mission. It is true that we have a shared interest in stopping human trafficking and smuggling, and we get some equipment and money for overtime, but I am opposed to the required patrol shifts. On Stonegarden shifts the Border Patrol tells us where we can patrol. We check in with them before a patrol shift. We are required to give them the names, birth dates, addresses, phone numbers, and license plate numbers of all people we contact for their database. We are also required to give them the number of subjects we turned over to Border Patrol and the number of immigration cases we handled on the patrol shift. This is not right and needs to end.

We need to get back to school. In 2015 we were working closely with the schools and other first responders in formulating strategies and partnerships in confronting school and community violence. The Sheriff’s Office, under the current administration, has allowed those connections and progress to deteriorate. We must get back on board and continue to work on the collaboration and advancement that was once being made.

Responsible decision making in the use of scarce county tax dollars is a requirement of any public official and it needs to return to the Sheriff’s Office. Purchases must be well thought out and not made on a whim. Carless administrative behavior and slipshod decision making have led to numerous law suits and must stop. My training and experience will allow me to reverse this current trend at the Sheriff’s Office and return it to a fiscally responsible agency capable of partnering, and sharing, with the other Jefferson County governmental agencies that we are a part of.

We need to finish the accreditation process. Accreditation is more than a certificate; it is a process, and we should complete it with staff instead of volunteers and a part-time employee as is currently being done. This is so the staff will have pride in ownership of the best-practices policies and procedures they will be abiding by in the community they serve daily. Under the current administration this process has been going on for more than two years and it is time to get it done. I will get it done.

Paid for by Citizens To Elect Joe Nole Sheriff
PO Box 374, Chimacum, WA 98325
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