Community Picnic Helps Foster Good Relationship With Franklin Police

Posted at 6:15 PM, Jun 03, 2015
and last updated 2015-07-09 02:36:30-04

FRANKLIN, Tenn. - Several hundred people came out to a community picnic Wednesday afternoon that was sponsored by the Franklin Police Department.

It was held in the Natchez Street neighborhood, on land owned by the Franklin Housing Authority.

Children and their parents were provided hot dogs and hamburgers from the grill. There were also inflatable play areas for the children.

This was an opportunity for the young people and police officers to interact, while having fun.

"I think it's very important for boys and girls, young and old, to be able to see the police officers in the community, and wave and say, 'hello officer.' And the officer to wave back and say, 'hello young man,'" said Franklin Alderman Pearl Bransford.

Kathy Robinson brought her two young children to the picnic. She is hopeful they will begin to understand the important role police play in their community.

"It's a great idea for them to know the police are here to protect, and help, and serve, and that they're not the bad guys," Robinson said.

Franklin Police Chief Deborah Faulkner attended the picnic, along with more than a dozen of her officers.

"Oh just look around, do you hear the laughter, and all the conversation? That is key to our mission," Faulkner said.

Not far away, several police officers played touch football with boys from the neighborhood. The chief said that is key to having a successful community policing program in Franklin.

"We want them to get to know us as human beings, and yes we wear badges, and we wear guns, and we do important work, but we're just big 'ol [sic] kids, too," according to Faulkner.

A bus full of children from the Williamson County Boys and Girls Club also attended the picnic.

Volunteers with the police department cooked and served lunch for the group.