Volunteers In Police Service (VIPS)
The VIPS (Volunteers In Police Service) is a volunteer group organized to assist the police department in providing a higher level of service to the community. The VIPS do this by providing services that would otherwise keep officers from responding to higher priority calls for service.
The VIPS or Volunteers in Police Service originated from a directive in President Bush’s 2002 State of the Union Address. The President, in light of the 9-11 attacks, called all citizens to act on higher levels in their communities.
In the City of Independence there are over 120,000 citizens. These citizens are well served by their police department consisting of just over 200 sworn law enforcement officers. Although the Independence Police Department strives to meet the growing expectations of a growing city, it has become more and more difficult to maintain the high level of service, as more calls are being made to the department everyday.
As the coordinator of the VIPS program, I am constantly receiving request from supervisors within the department to have the assistance of the VIPS. Whether it is as simple as help entering data, or as involved as conducting a radar survey, I know I can count on the VIPS to come through. The VIPS are able to assist the department in carrying out tasks, jobs, and public services that might not be in existence if it were not for the help of the VIPS.