Ladies for Law Enforcement membership now open


LLE Opening 062017

Pictured from left are founding members Danielle Conde- 1 year member, Lesha Waskom Etheredge- 3 year member, Dr. Haley Blount Taitano- 2 year member, Brittani Murphy Linebaugh- 1 year member and Julie Perkins Sers- 2 year member.

As the wife of a law enforcement officer, Lesha Waskom saw a need for improving the public’s relationship with its local police forces.

She and several of her friends founded Ladies for Law Enforcement (LLE), a non-profit organization, in May. The NPSO Law Enforcement Ball will be the organization’s main event. The NPSO Honor Guard has formerly run this event, but graciously let the LLE take it under their wing.

Waskom said LLE will add events in the future, all with the goal of improving the community’s perception of law enforcement officers.

“Events we put on will give the public a chance to meet these officers outside of their uniforms,” she said. “They’ll get to see them for the people they are and not just a badge.”

Membership is now open to anyone 18 years or older. Dues are $50 per year, which includes a half-price ticket for the annual ball, a $10 t-shirt, newsletters, meetings and the opportunity to have your voice heard in support of law enforcement. The first official meeting will be held in August (exact date TBA).

“I wanted to start at home, but I dream of it becoming bigger than Natchitoches,” she said.

Recently, the media has taken it upon themselves to be the jury and publicly convict officers themselves before any due process can be done. Instances involving altercations with police officers have become more widely viewed through social media and a few bad apples are ruining the public’s perception of anyone who wears a badge.

“Officers are being judged for the actions of a few men,” said Waskom. “But that’s not who they are. They took an oath to serve and protect and 99.9 percent of them take it seriously. It’s become more and more scary for officers themselves to go out and do their job knowing that the public’s perception of them is changing because of what they’re wearing. Seeing a large group of people come together with similar view to support our law enforcement would put more ease in my mind when I send my husband off to work.”

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