Thursday, April 13, 2023

Ashland Police Creates Specialty Autism Awareness Patch

A police department in Schuylkill County is selling patches to help raise awareness about autism and to support the upcoming Spartan Games.

April is Autism Awareness Month and Ashland Patrolman Tyler Dissinger wanted to do something to not only raise awareness, but also wanted to support a local organization.  

Dissinger said late last year, he began collecting patches from other police departments.   Part of collecting patches is providing one in return.  When asked if Ashland had any specialty patches, Dissinger realized they didn't, and he began to brainstorm.

Dissinger spoke with Chief Ger Daley, and another patch collector from Ashland, Adam Bernodin III, and they came up with the idea of creating an Autism Awareness patch to sell during the month of April.

Bernodin said the idea for the patch came from police departments like Derry Township and Lititz, who regularly create specialty patches.

Bernodin said "I think this is great way for the community to connect with our police department.".

They also heard the North Schuylkill Spartan Games were looking for donations and felt this would be perfect recipient of the proceeds of the patch sales.

The Spartan Games is an annual track and field event held each May that allows special needs to compete for their respective school, against other districts in the area.

In March, the police department began taking preorders and sold over 100 patches with a couple days.  Since the patches arrived last week, a dozen more have sold.

Anyone who would like to buy a badge, can stop by borough hall Monday through Friday, and ask to speak with police.  The cost of each badge is $10.

Ashland Police will also be at the Spartan Games on North Schuylkill on May 9th, 2023, selling the patches.

Dissinger said once all the patches are sold, they expect to donate $2,300 from the sales.

Dissinger and Bernodin both said they expect to do more specialty patches in the future.

If you are a patch collector like Dissinger and Bernodin, check out