U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst stops at Dallas County Sheriff’s Office as part of 99 County Tour

Allison Ullmann
Dallas County News
Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, visits the Dallas County Sheriff's Office in Adel on Monday, Jan. 11.

U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, made the third stop on her tour of Iowa's 99 counties in Dallas County on Monday, Jan. 11.

The visit included a tour of the Dallas County Sheriff’s Office and new jail facility and a visit with Sheriff Chad Leonard.

“I’m really excited about the facility," Ernst said after the tour. "It really is quite the jewel for Dallas County."

“I truly want to thank the voters in Dallas County for recognizing the need to modernize the facility, make sure that it’s safe not only for the inmates but also for those officers and personnel who are working in the facility,” she added.

Leonard said one of the items he discussed with Ernst on the tour revolved around mental health issues.

"Anytime one of our legislators expresses interest and wants to actually know about it, that’s a huge benefit for law enforcement," he said.

Ernst said they discussed making sure that mental health resources are available not only for inmates but also for those working in the facility.

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“One thing we talked about too, especially after last week’s actions at the U.S. Capitol, was making sure there was support available for peace officers," she said, "because they do experience some very tragic episodes as they’re moving through their daily duties. I do think that’s very important.”

The Dallas County stop on Monday was Ernst’s third as part of her seventh 99 County Tour. She also visited Warren and Clarke counties that day.

“It is so valuable to get out and even during a time of pandemic, you still have to be out talking to Iowans and understanding what their concerns are, what the issues are and how we overcome some of those challenges,” Ernst said.