SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — For almost ten years, Lt. James Milana and Sgt. Colin Hillman have been brothers in blue. But for the last three years, they’re also brothers in pink.
“They’re the same badge we wear every day, they just dip them into pink paint,” Milana said.
With a $40 dollar, each officer gets to break protocol for two months. They can wear a pink badge instead of the normal one in October, for breast cancer awareness and during November, they can participate in “No-Shave November” or wear blue nail polish, for prostate cancer awareness.
Hillman said, “It affects people in the department, but in the communities and it gives us the opportunity to connect with them on a different level other than just being a police officer.”
The more than $20,000 raised in the past three years is the pint, but it is also starting a dialogue.
“You’re used to seeing a silver badge or gold badge on city police officers, so a seeing pink badge walking toward you on the street, it catches people’s eye,” Hillman said.
“A lot of people come up to us, ask us questions about the pink badge,” Milana said. “It’s a great conversation starter, a positive bridge between us and the public.”
At a time when police officers need all the help they can get improving their relationship with the people they protect.
The officers haven’t decided what charity will benefit from their donations this year, but last year, more than $7,000 raised went to Paige’s Butterfly Run and the year before that, more than $10,000 was split among three charities.
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