Ohio collecting law enforcement protective gear for Ukraine

The Ohio Department of Public Safety is starting to collect hundreds of personal protective gear from law enforcement agencies to donate to the Ukraine civilian territorial defense.

Last month, Gov. Mike DeWine asked law enforcement agencies to inventory surplus or expired, but still functional, protective gear that could potentially be donated. More than 20 agencies responded and offered 75 ballistic and riot helmets and 840 pieces of body armor, including vests and plates.

“As Russia continues its unprovoked attack on Ukraine, citizens are stepping up to defend their country with little more protection than the clothes on their backs, and I am grateful to the Ohio law enforcement agencies that didn’t hesitate to offer their unneeded gear,” DeWine said. “This is Ohio’s opportunity to provide civilian humanitarian aid to help the innocent Ukrainians who are voluntarily putting their lives at risk on the front lines.”

The Fund to Aid Ukraine, a non-profit organization in Parma, will coordinate the delivery of the donation to Ukraine. The Ohio State Highway Patrol will contact participating agencies about where to drop off donations.

“This quick response is meaningful and essential to the people of Ukraine fighting each day to defend their country, their freedom and democratic principles against the brutal and unprovoked invasion by Russia,” said Marta Liscynesky Kelleher, president of United Ukrainian Organizations of Ohio. “We appreciate Gov. DeWine’s leadership in this effort, which can serve as a model for other states to take on similar initiatives.”

The governor added there is still time for other law enforcement agencies to donate protective gear. They can contact their local OSHP post for more information.

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