Since 2016, the National Association of Counties (NACo) has provided over 2,000 counties, parishes and boroughs with official flag retirement boxes. Helping residents properly retire worn U.S. flags is consistent with NACo’s commitment to public service and community engagement.
When an American flag becomes worn out or torn, the U.S. Flag Code dictates how to respectfully retire it. Too many of our residents are unsure of how to care for our nation’s symbol, and county leaders can play a key role in informing them.
Counties, parishes and boroughs have partnered with local groups to collect flags ready for retirement and hold retirement ceremonies.
5 STEPS TO LAUNCH A FLAG RETIREMENT PROGRAM IN YOUR COMMUNITY:
1. ARRANGE FOR FLAG COLLECTION
Many local organizations, like Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, veterans groups and sheriffs’ departments, regularly hold flag retirement ceremonies. Identify and partner with a group that will be responsible for emptying the flag box and retiring flags in the proper manner.
2. DISPLAY THE BOX
Find a location for the flag retirement box that is both secure and easily accessible. The box is durable but recommended for indoor use only.
3. ALERT THE PUBLIC
Announce the box’s availability and location to residents through local news, social media and other forms of communication. NACo has a customizable press release template to help announce your flag retirement program, which can be accessed at NACo.org/flagrollout
4. PROMOTE PROPER FLAG RETIREMENT
Ensure your residents understand the importance of U.S. flag care using our template press release and social media posts below.
5. MONITOR THE BOX
Assign someone, either in the county or a partner, to regularly check the condition of the box. When the box is no longer suitable for use, it can be recycled.
PROMOTE FLAG RETIREMENT IN YOUR COMMUNITY:
[COUNTY] Residents: Visit [location of box] to drop off U.S. flags ready for retirement. We’ve partnered with [Local Group] to collect and respectfully retire our community’s worn and tattered flags
When the U.S. flag is tattered, torn or faded, it’s ready for dignified retirement. Visit [location of box] to drop off your flag today
POST ON FACEBOOK
Click here to post about your flag retirement program on Facebook.