From the historic Fox Theatre to Little Caesars Arena and beyond, the Detroit Police Department has been there to keep Detroit’s sports and entertainment fans at our beloved venues safe and secure.
In honor of this relationship and their commitment to our collective safety, Ilitch Companies, along with the Downtown Detroit Partnership, recognized National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (L.E.A.D.) with the Back the Blue initiative on Thursday, Jan. 9. Buildings and venues throughout downtown Detroit were lit up blue in a nationwide show of support for law enforcement.
“When we talk about backing the blue, it’s the community and our business partners saying, ‘We’re going to back you for the difficult job that you do each and every day,’” said Detroit Police Chief James Craig. “To know that we have community-based support backing those men and women goes a tremendously long way.”
Ilitch Companies also asked its employees to wear blue to honor those who keep us safe. More than 300 freshly baked cookies were offered to the security staff for all company venues to show appreciation for their extraordinary efforts.
“It’s showing community and corporate support for the men and women in public safety who are trying to make our city, our country and our state a better place to live in,” said Rick Fenton, vice president of corporate security for Ilitch Holdings.
For many years, Ilitch Companies has worked closely with local and national law enforcement to make for a better, safer District Detroit.
Little Caesars Arena was also the first mixed-use arena to earn the highest level of protection, the Safety Act Certification, from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in 2017. And, just this past month, Fenton and his team earned the Safety Act Designation by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, demonstrating that The District Detroit in total are operating at the highest level of protection for our fans, players and visitors.
In 2018, Ilitch Charities and the Detroit Tigers Foundation provided highly trained dogs to local law enforcement to enrich the high security standards for the protection of fans and venue employees.
Venue security collaborates with local law enforcement to provide security outside of venues, including traffic management, on-foot patrols and patrols on horseback. These measures, along with behind-the-scenes coordination among local law enforcement and event staff and security, help keep sports and entertainment fans safe.
In 2018, the Mike Ilitch School of Business at Wayne State University began a partnership with the Detroit Police Department to provide a 16-credit-hour certification program that bolsters local law enforcement officer’s knowledge in finance, budgeting, human resource management and communications. The program aims to improve officers’ leadership and resource management skills. Nearly two dozen City of Detroit and Wayne State University police officers received graduate certificates through the program in its first year.