Local News

Clarendon County Sheriff'd Office launches "Are You OK?" Program


Clarendon County Sheriff Tim Baxley is proud to unveil the “Are You OK?” program, a community initiative aimed at safeguarding the well being of elderly and disabled residents throughout Clarendon County. Spearheaded by dedicated employee Karen DeCosta, this program promises to provide crucial support to those who live alone or face health challenges.

The “Are You OK?” program offers a lifeline for vulnerable members of the community. Participants can register for the program, enabling them to check in with the Sheriff’s Office each weekday by 10 a.m. If a registered individual fails to make their scheduled call, Sheriff’s Office springs into action, initiating a series of welfare checks.

“In our county, there have been far too many instances where individuals, isolated in their homes, have faced dire circumstances without anyone to check on them,” Sheriff Baxley explains. “Our hope is that this program will prevent such tragedies by providing regular check-ins and ensuring timely assistance when needed.”

The program operates on a simple yet effective premise. Participants are required to register and provide essential information about their needs and emergency contacts. They commit to calling the Law Enforcement Center each weekday morning. During weekends and holidays when the office is closed, participants are urged to dial 911 in case of a medical emergency.

“We want our participants to feel supported and reassured,” says DeCosta, the driving force behind the initiative. “That’s why we’ve established clear guidelines for both participants and law enforcement staff.”

Participant responsibilities include regular check-in calls, notification of absences due to hospitalization or vacations, and updating emergency contact information.

Law enforcement staff, in turn, pledge to respond promptly to check-in calls, attempt contact with participants who miss their call, and dispatch officers for in-person welfare checks when necessary.

The “Are You OK?” program is modeled after a successful initiative in the City of Sumter, shared with Clarendon County law enforcement. Application forms and instructions for participation are available on the Clarendon County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page and website.

“We encourage eligible residents to take advantage of this invaluable service,” Sheriff Baxley urges. “Together, we can ensure the safety and well-being of every member of our community.”

For more information about the “Are You OK?” program, please contact DeCosta at 803-433-3649 or via email at kdecosta@clarendoncountygov.org.