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Vote Yes For The Safety of Palo Alto County

By Staff | Feb 4, 2021

To the Editor:

Sheriff Schultes said it best: “We are not wishing to build because we want to, we are wishing to build because we need to.”

I have been an employee with the Palo Alto County Sheriff’s Office for about 7 years as a dispatcher, I love my job and I love serving Palo Alto County.

Our building is over 100 years old and is not safe. Many people think our job is easy but they don’t see the inside and don’t know the stress that we have and go through. I watch the cameras 24/7 not out of boredom but for the safety of myself, co-workers, and the inmates. I am glued to that screen every time I hear the jingle of the keys knowing the jailer has to enter with the inmates. Every hour in the day if not more the jailer has to put themselves at risk and go into the cells to check on inmates. They are locked in with them if something happens, we have to get the other set of keys, call a deputy and hope we can move fast to get to the jailer and in that amount of time anything can happen. We are at risk when we come to work yes, we know what we signed on for but we do this so the community can feel safe.

In the past few years there have been numerous counties that have had inmates escape from the jail and employees getting injured. Our center is old and not safe! We pose a high risk for an escape happening, our building is not secure enough and with how old the building is no improvements can ever make it safe and secure. We can no longer fix it with a band aid.

I know a majority of you have walked into the Sheriff’s Office looked into the dispatch room and seen how small it is, good thing I am not claustrophobic. Honestly, I feel like I’m working in a dungeon. Our area is so small and non-efficient. If we had a disaster in Palo Alto County it would be hard for two or more employees to be in the area and try to serve the community and get the help they need. We are not in a secure area if we get a tornado we stay where we are so we can be here for the community. In the new building the comm center would be located in the center in a secured area no outside walls we would be safer and still be able to be there to serve Palo Alto County.

Please check out the Palo Alto Sheriffs web page and click on the yellow tab for the proposal of the Public Safety Center in full detail and come March 2, 2021 please vote yes for the safety of our family and yours.

Sincerely,

(signed) Tiffani Keller

Resident and Employee

of Palo Alto County