At a meeting about the proposed new jail, which took place in Ferndale on Sept. 26, the public was given an opportunity to comment on the proposal. During this open session, a candidate for the Bellingham City Council made what I believe to be outrageous and hurtful statements directed at the correction deputies of the Whatcom County Sheriff's Office. Bob Burr, a candidate for the Bellingham City Council, stated that the correction deputies "acted like goons."
I have had direct contact and have visited the Whatcom County Jail on many occasions and have seen these fine men and women in action over the last seven years. I have never witnessed any behavior from any member of the corrections staff that would even come close to Burr's mean-spirited assessment. I have only witnessed a high level of professionalism and a high regard for the needs and well being of the inmates.
Instead of taking cheap-shots at the corrections deputies to score political points, Burr would be better served to support the building of a new jail. Why, because the facility that we are presently using as a jail is very close to becoming a "human-rights violation" - this is the real issue, not Burr's need to attract attention.
Robert J. Friske