MAYVILLE, NY (WNY News Now) — The Southern Tier’s U.S. Representative paid a visit to Chautauqua County on Tuesday, when he met with local law enforcement officials.
Representative Nick Langworthy of New York’s 23rd Congressional District met with leaders at the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office, in the hopes of understanding and supporting the needs of the department.
The congressman met with Sheriff Jim Quattrone before touring both the county jail, law enforcement offices, and the dispatch center.
“They’re obviously on the frontlines of a lot of the crises in our communities. I’ve known Sheriff Quattrone for years, and there’s none better than the job he does here in Chautauqua County,” Langworthy explained. “Coming here to see the jail facilities, but also to talk to the employees. You know, asking them what they’re seeing, what their biggest challenges are. I think that’s very helpful to certainly shape my worldview as I go to congress and face a lot of the important questions in front of us.”
For local law enforcement, visits like this are important to influence national policy.
“It gives support to all of our staff. Many times, whether it’s our dispatchers, our corrections officers, our patrol guys, feel underappreciated. We talked about some of the laws that have been enacted in New York State, oftentimes made without any consultation from the people in the field, to see how it directly impacts us,” Quattrone said. “So it’s very much appreciated, the congressman being here, to hear from us, what we need, what can help us to do our jobs better, that’s what our goal is.”
One of the big issues facing law enforcement, Langworthy argues, is the influx of illegal drugs.
“Talking to some of the detectives about the constant theme of fentanyl. We’re losing so many people every single day to this very deadly, unprecedentedly deadly drug,” Langworthy stated. “Hearing how it’s affecting people on the frontlines, as officers are having to worry about their own safety going on a call because they may get cross-contaminated. I’ve heard multiple instances within my district, in some of the southern tier counties of our police officers having to be Narcanned because of incidental contact on the scene.”
Following his tour of several local departments, Congressman Langworthy hopes his newfound experiences can help drive new policy changes both nationwide and in Western New York.