COLUMBIA CITY — Year-round, Whitley County Sheriff’s deputies and Columbia City Police officers are limited on the amount of facial hair they’re allowed to have.
This month, both departments will be participating in their own versions of “No Shave November” to raise money for important causes.
The Sheriff’s Department is raising money for Relay for Life of Whitley County, and the CCPD is raising funds for its annual Patrolling for Presents program. Participants can pay a $25 fee to be allowed to have facial hair.
Deputy Brandon Smith brought the idea to Sheriff Marc Gatton last year, but Gatton didn’t have time to formulate a plan. This year, he was ready.
“I am encouraging and challenging all staff to participate this year,” Gatton said.
At the sheriff’s department, deputies, confinement officers, dispatchers, courthouse security officers and other divisions can sport their new looks, with Gatton providing an exemption to the facial hair guidelines.
Gatton said women can participate by choosing not to shave or going without a haircut for a month.
Supporting cancer treatment and research is fitting for the WCSD, as several employees have family members who face cancer diagnoses. Recently, Courthouse security officer Ron Glassley was diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer.
“This is the chance to raise money for an important cause. It will also give the staff a chance to rib and laugh at each other,” Gatton said.
The sheriff encourages the public to view the fundraiser participants on the Whitley County Sheriff’s Department’s Facebook page.
The CCPD began No Shave November a week early, allowing the department to raise extra money. As of last week, Chief Tony Hively said the department raised $120.