UW-Madison police chief bans 'Thin Blue Line' imagery

An unidentified man participates in a Blue Lives Matter rally Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020, in Kenosha, Wis. Photo: AP Photo/Morry Gash. An unidentified man participates in a Blue Lives Matter rally Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020, in Kenosha, Wis.

Associated Press
Created: January 29, 2021 07:38 AM

University of Wisconsin-Madison's police chief has banned officers from using "Thin Blue Line" imagery while on duty.

The move by Chief Kristen Roman follows criticism on social media of a "Thin Blue Line" flag displayed at the police department's office. The flag, which resembles a U.S. flag but has a blue stripe, is considered a sign of police solidarity, but has also been criticized as a symbol of white supremacy.

Roman said the flag has been "co-opted" by extremists with "hateful ideologies" and that her department needs to distance itself from the imagery to build trust with the community, the Wisconsin State Journal reported.

"We must consider the cost of clinging to a symbol that is undeniably and inextricably linked to actions and beliefs antithetical to UWPD's values," she said in a Jan. 15 email.


(Copyright 2021 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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