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Brockport police joins local units in "Beards for Bucks"

by Shelby Toth - News Editor
Tue, Nov 6th 2018 10:40 pm

As part of its continuing effort to practice community policing and get more in touch with the residents of the community, the Brockport Police Department (BPD) is participating in Beards for Bucks.

As part of Beards for Bucks, the police officers are allowed to grow out their beard in the month of November, if they pay the $25 fee. According to the BPD’s team page, the money raised will go toward 13thirty Cancer Connect, and the teen and young adult programs offered there, as well as “cutting-edge cancer research and compassionate, innovative patient-care programs” at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. 

Bald for Bucks started in Buffalo, New York in the early 2000’s, according to Christina DiBaudo, the Rochester Bald for Bucks Coordinator. Since being created, the campaign has spread across the country, raising money for 13thirty Cancer Connect and Roswell Park, and growing in span as well. 

“A spin off of Bald for Bucks, Beards for Bucks began last year as an opportunity for local law enforcement members to grow beards during the month of November,” DiBaudo said. “Captain Tony McMullen of the Rochester Police Department spearheaded Beards for Bucks in Rochester last year, which supports teens and young adults with cancer at 13thirty Cancer Connect and critical cancer research at Roswell Park.”

According to BPD Police Chief Mark Cuzzupoli, the men of the department wanted to participate in “No Shave November” for quite some time. 

“The guys have been doing a great job and they wanted to grow a beard to support [something],” Cuzzupoli said. “They were going to come up with something, pick a charity and do this on their own.”

When he attended the monthly Law Enforcement Council meeting, Cuzzupoli learned about Beards for Bucks. He brought it back to the department, and, not long afterwards, Sergeant Robert Hagen set up a page on the website.

“Beards for bucks is a great event put on by 13thirty Cancer Connect & Roswell Park Cancer Center which brings the members of the Brockport Police together with the community to raise money towards a great cause,” Hagen said. “...We look forward to seeing which officer can grow the best beard and bring in the most donations.”

Brockport Police Chief Cuzzupoli says that the goal is to unite everyone in the Brockport community. 

“The overall theme is that there really is no family who hasn’t been affected by cancer has lost somebody to cancer,” Cuzzupoli said. “The guys and girls of this police department are just trying to make a difference.”

This is an important cause for police to stand in support of, as they can act as faces of the community.

“Since police officers are in contact with the community every single day, they have the unique opportunity to raise awareness for teens and young adults with cancer and for cancer research,” DiBaudo said. “...When people in the community notice a new look on familiar faces this November, they’ll know it’s in support of 13thirty Cancer Connect and Roswell Park. It’s the perfect way to raise awareness and come together as a community to show support for those affected by cancer.”

Brockport police isn’t the only police department to participate in the event. Many other local departments, such as Brighton Police, Gates Police and even the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, to name a few, are participating in the event.

As of November 5, the BPD have raised $690 of their $1,000 goal, according to their webpage.