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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 202121 Find in a Library
Title: One Department's Volunteer Experience: Learning From the Eugene Police Department
Journal: Police Chief  Volume:70  Issue:8  Dated:August 2003  Pages:26-27,29,30
Author(s): Carrie Chouinard
Editor(s): Charles E. Higginbotham
Date Published: August 2003
Page Count: 4
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes the Eugene Police Department’s volunteer program implemented as an effective means of stretching diminishing resources and advancing the department’s community policing efforts.
Abstract: In the year 2000, the police department in Eugene, OR launched its Volunteers in Police Service (VIPS) program. The VIPS program was a creative technique initiated to stretch resources that were steadily dwindling and keep officers on patrol. Successful recruiting of volunteers began with college students and young adults and evolved to include both senior citizens and retirees. Following the implementation of the volunteer program, the Seniors on Patrol program was established to enhance the department’s community policing programs. These volunteers tackle nonenforcement issues allowing police officers the ability to focus on frontline duties. Additional volunteer assignments under the program include: financial crimes unit, forensic evidence unit, interagency narcotics enforcement team, kids safety town, neighborhood watch, office of professional standards, operations analysis unit, police substations, property control unit, public information office, records section, school resource team, SWAT team and crowd control team, and volunteer program administration. Since its inception, the VIPS program in Eugene has steadily expanded. There are close to 30 different volunteer positions available. In 2002, 79 volunteers contributed nearly 10,000 hours of service with volunteers ranging in age from 15 to 80 (over 60 percent over age 59). The VIPS program in the Eugene Police Department has become a key component of the department’s community policing program, and the program has resulted in strong partnerships between the Eugene citizenry and the law enforcement community.
Main Term(s): Volunteer programs
Index Term(s): Community policing; Oregon; Police community relations; Police department volunteers; Police volunteer training; Police-citizen interactions; Policing innovation; Public Opinion of the Police; Volunteer training; Volunteers
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