Blandford Police Department Resigns. Yes, The Whole Department

BLANDFORD, MA — The entire police department of a small town in the southwestern part of the state resigned Monday evening. The residents of Blandford – all 1,233 of them, according to a 2010 census – were advised to call State Police should they need emergency services.

The Blandford Police Department posted on Facebook shortly before 9 p.m. that its members resigned, effective immediately. It offered no explanation.

The department is made up of an interim chief and three officers.

According to a statement signed by the four members and obtained by the Western Mass. News, the move came in response to the “current situation with the department” and “unsafe working conditions.”

The statement said the reasons had to do with poor equipment and wages that saw officers get paid $14-15 per hour.

“We regret leaving the town without a town police force, but we have no choice given the situation that we face.”

In another statement obtained by the News, the Blandford Selectboard expressed disappointment and said it will continue to search for a new police chief.

“It is unfortunate that [Interim Chief Sarnacki] led this officer walk out as she would have been considered as one of our candidates for Acting Chief position as we pursue the future opportunities with our police force,” the Selectboard said. “We have had multiple public meetings with our police force and have offered them the opportunity to engage and provide their opinions for the direction of the force.”

Patch’s email and call to the Blandford Selectboard was not immediately returned Monday night. A call to the police department just kept ringing.

The State Police on Tuesday morning assured Blandford residents it will “continue to protect their community.”

Blandford is small town in Hampden County that sits 20 miles west of Springfield.