No Profanity Signs Discussed For Ocean City; Enforcement Concerns Raised

Virginia Beach’s Oceanfront currently utilizes “no profanity signs,” like the one pictured above. Submitted Photo Virginia Beach’s Oceanfront currently utilizes “no profanity signs,” like the one pictured above. Submitted Photo

OCEAN CITY – City officials are currently exploring options, including looking to a neighboring resort for research, about new signage suggesting no profanity on the Boardwalk.

The idea of posting “no profanity signs” on the Boardwalk was brought before the Police Commission this week. Commission members thought it was a creative concept, but the Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) would have no right in lawfully enforcing the signage, it was pointed out.

The signage was brought forward by a constituent of Council Secretary Mary Knight, who in turn passed the concept forward to the Police Commission.

The signs have been spotted on Virginia Beach’s Boardwalk and nearby locations, and Knight has been in contact with the Virginia Beach City Manager’s Office to gather feedback.

“I talked with the city manager’s office in Virginia Beach and they could not quantify the success of the program, although they have received many positive comments,” Knight submitted.

According to Cymek, it has been suggested to install a few similar signs on the south end of Ocean City’s boardwalk.

“It is clear it is not something you can make an arrest on. They are still entitled to their First Amendment rights,” Cymek said.

Councilman Dennis Dare was concerned over the perception the signs may give.

“I learned a long time ago you don’t want to make laws that you can’t enforce,” Dare said.

Cymek added another suggestion was adding the word “please”, to help differentiate between the sign asking for no profanity versus implementing a law.

“We would have to continue our operations as if those signs didn’t exist … so for us, yes, it is a possible plus, and considered a tool or helpful hint so to speak … but there is nothing there for us to use from a law enforcement standpoint,” OCPD Chief Ross Buzzuro said.

City Solicitor Guy Ayres agreed there is a big difference between putting up a sign as a courtesy versus making it a crime.

Buzzuro concluded with OCPD contacting Virginia Beach to receive additional information in how the neighboring resort went forward with installing the signage and how the signs have been proven productive.








4 thoughts on “No Profanity Signs Discussed For Ocean City; Enforcement Concerns Raised

  1. Continuing to see more and more communication with other resort towns and how they do things. Never ever hurts to ask what others do, then gather that information, discuss with your community and see if implementation can take place. Not to mention, already saw this story on the DC Fox news station this morning (Friday). Free publicity never hurts either!!! Worst thing if signs go up, you take them down!

    Inching ever closer to Spring 2014!!!

  2. Sad state of affairs when these signs are even considered. What has happened to society? No respect at all. I am older now, however, as a teen, was a frequent visitor on the boardwalk. Never in my wildest dreams would I even think to disburse with the profanity you hear today. I had and still have respect for everyone. Guess I am a product of having a mom and dad at home, who taught us these things. I pray every night for my grandchildren growing up in this day and age. Makes me sad.

  3. I think that it is a wonderful idea to post the signs. I am 65 and actauly do not like going there for that reason.. Ii cannot believe the kids these days.. The young men and women, neither have any respect for themselves as they use their language in public like it is a normal language. It’s terrible and let alone for children to hear the language spoken there. Thumbs up to the OC City officials.

  4. Try telling a drunk 18 year old hanging with his piers that he can’t curse?!?! It won’t work and will in fact backlash on the community by escalating the situation. Waste of time and money installing those signs. Why not spice up the boardwalk with some local art?? Hold a competition and allow the winner to do some art in a local, well-viewed location projecting an encouraging phrase or situation. True change starts at the personal level and continues up; not vice versa.

    -Mike D

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