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Man demands Salvation Army bell ringer leave Brea post office

December 17, 2008 |  6:46 am

So people are calling him a grinch. Brea's mayor says he's wrong. But the man who demanded that the Salvation Army bell ringer be removed from outside a Brea post office tells the O.C. Register there is a principle involved: separating church and state. More:

The man who prompted the U.S. Postal Service to shoo away Salvation Army bell ringers says he just wants the law obeyed.

Postal Service regulations prohibit any organization from soliciting on its properties. But Salvation Army bell ringers had been allowed to become a mainstay in front of the Brea post office during the holidays for 25-plus years.

On Nov. 24, when Sean Thomas saw the iconic bell ringers at the Birch Street post office –- staffed by employees of the Evangelical Christian Credit Union -– he decided to speak up. The Salvation Army is Christian-based.

"How can we have a church set up a collection facility in front of a federal building?" the 65-year-old Brea resident said.

The bell ringer has moved to outside the Brea Mall.

--Shelby Grad