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Residents have the opportunity to voice concerns

Suffolk residents have a chance to voice concerns to city leaders over a cup of coffee in the coming months.

Sheriff E.C. Harris and Vice Mayor Leroy Bennett will be available for a meet and greet from 9 to 10:30 a.m. on Aug. 26 at Wall Street Cafe, 118 W. Washington St.

The Suffolk Sheriff’s Office would host Coffee with the Sheriff events monthly before COVID-19 shut in-person events down. The events give an opportunity for the community to get to know the sheriff and voice any concerns that they felt need to be heard. Now that restrictions have been lifted, the sheriff is ready to get back out, but this time he won’t be alone.

“We wanted to team up with a council member, and folks are encouraged to come whether they meet with the sheriff or council member,” said Katie Jones, community engagement coordinator for Suffolk Sheriff’s Office. “The community can come and talk even if the council member isn’t for their borough. They are available to the citizens.”

This is the second Coffee with the Sheriff event recently. The first one was on Aug. 12 with Mayor Mike Duman as a guest. Upcoming events will include different members of the city council. However, citizens of all boroughs are encouraged to come and talk regardless of which member is present.

There will be no formal presentations or any speeches from Sheriff Harris or Vice Mayor Bennett. This is for the people to have their voice heard or get to know Suffolk leaders while enjoying coffee. The only plan they have is to listen to the voices of the people they serve.

“There’s no need to email or call, they are right there,” said Jones. “It’s a good opportunity both to connect and to enjoy a cup of coffee.”

The next Coffee with the Sheriff will be held from 8:30 to 10 a.m. on Sept. 16 at Knotts Coffee Company, 1500 Bridgeport Way, Suite 110. The guest will be Councilman Roger Fawcett.

“We’re getting the community involved, and that’s the key,” said Jones. “It’s a win-win for everybody.”