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October 3, 2011

CONTACT: Peter Van Delft
(617) 704-6682


Members of the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Choice Program at the Department’s Chelsea Training Academy.

The Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department has begun its annual in–school redeployment of community service officers to provide outreach to the students of Suffolk County.

Throughout the school–year, a cadre of twenty–six officers will bring the Department’s Choice Program to the schools of Boston, Chelsea, Winthrop and Revere to deliver on the program’s mission of helping young people to make positive choices for future success while reinforcing the theme of respect for oneself and for others around them. Officers also speak with students about a variety of topics specific to today’s youths including the dangers of drug use and gang involvement, as well as the consequences of criminal activity.

Created by Suffolk County Sheriff Andrea J. Cabral in December of 2005, the Choice Program is comprised of Department officers who commit to serve in the program on a volunteer basis and who demonstrate the desire to exemplify its core values. Prior to deployment, each officer participates in a weeklong, forty–hour training class focusing on such topics as: bullying and cyber–bullying, Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI), civic engagement, sexting, public safety and other pertinent issues.

At a recent training held for new and returning Choice officers at the Department’s Chelsea Training facility, attendees reviewed program curriculum, current anti–bullying laws, violence prevention measures, and up–to–date CORI laws before participating in presentations made by Boston Police Detectives Donald Caisey and Janine Busby, and Detective Lanita Cullinane from the BPD Family Justice Center.

According to Sandy Zamor Calixte, the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Coordinator of Community Outreach and Youth Programs, the Choice Program represents an opportunity to positively impact the lives of young people by providing them with the support and coping tools that can help them to make the kinds of wise decisions that lead to successful, productive lives.

“Choice is an important program because it allows our officers to speak to and address many of the issues that our youth are dealing with on a daily basis,” said Zamor Calixte. “Many of the issues we address are issues that can lead an individual into our custody in the future, so the Choice Program tries to combat those negatives by going to the schools and helping them to learn the importance of making the right choices.”

To schedule a visit by the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Department Choice Officers to your school or to learn more about the Choice Program, click here or call Deputy Justin Plaza at (617) 635-1100, Ext. 3156.

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