The successful race of Paul Heroux to be the next sheriff in Bristol County is an encouraging sign that voters are paying attention and acknowledging that they want honesty and accountability from their elected officials.

Cutting through the exaggerated and divisive rhetoric about rampant crime and undocumented immigrants, the voters realized that hateful speech and inattention to rehabilitation was the true threat to the community.

Bristol County is not the only voting community that refused to be frightened into maintaining expensive and dysfunctional systems that only perpetuated careers and publicity generating attention to some officials. Voters want law abiding, qualified and accountable officials who do what they say, and want to bring respect for the true law enforcing police departments in each town and city.

Bristol County will now have a sheriff who will honor the oath of office, respect the staff and make every effort to provide the incarcerated and detained an opportunity to become contributors to the community and not be re-offenders.

Betty Ussach is a Dartmouth resident

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