Snohomish County Corrections could use a few volunteer sewing enthusiasts

EVERETT — Employees at the Snohomish County jail are about to get a whole lot of new uniform patches. But who wants to sew on more than 2,000 of them? And for free?

Corrections Maj. Doug Jeske has been trying to find volunteers.

“I’m working on the Boy Scout angle right now,” Jeske said. “I also plan on trying to talk to some of the quilting or sewing clubs.”

The corrections department used to be separate from the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office. The County Council voted to join the two late last year, citing a potential cost savings. The two officially merged on Jan. 1, making corrections the largest of four sheriff’s office bureaus.

The patches are a small, but symbolically important, part of this change. Staff wanted their uniforms to reflect the new identity. They voted on two patch designs and settled on one with a fir tree similar to the one that sheriff’s deputies already wear.

Getting the new patches should be the easy part. Here’s the wrinkle: putting them on.

About 260 employees sport the old patches. Most have three uniforms and a jacket, all with a patch on each sleeve.

That means more than 2,000 old patches need to be removed, then replaced with an equal number of new ones. In a time of county budget woes, it has to be done free.

Jail staff opted against inmate labor, Jeske said, because of worries over quality control.

“That’s a lot of patches,” he said. “And there’s no money to do that.”

Jeske hopes volunteers will help him complete the image makeover by late spring or summer.

Noah Haglund: 425-339-3494,

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