Village Public Safety Officer (VPSO) Program
The Village Public Safety Officer Program began in the late 1970s as a means of providing rural Alaskan communities with needed public safety services at the local level to reduce the loss of life due to fires, drowning, lost person and the lack of immediate emergency medical assistance in rural communities. The Village Public Safety Officer Program was designed to train and employ individuals residing in the village as first responders to public safety emergencies such as search and rescue, fire protection, emergency medical assistance, crime prevention and basic law enforcement. The presence of these officers has had a significant impact on improving the quality of life in the participating villages. As a result, the VPSO’s are generally the first to respond to many calls for help from community members; hence their motto, “FIRST RESPONDERS – LAST FRONTIER”.
Through KANA's partnership with the Alaska State Troopers (AST) and our local village and city councils, the VPSO presence on the island of Kodiak is viewed as a positive approach to public safety. KANA currently employs (as authorized by the State of Alaska) the following:
- 1 VPSO Coordinator
- 1 VPSO in Akhiok
- 1 VPSO in Old Harbor
- 1 VPSO in Larsen Bay
- 1 VPSO in Port Lions
- 1 Roving VPSO stationed in the City of Kodiak to provide additional public safety coverage in the villages.
This multi-disciplinary design of the VPSO Program makes the VPSO a truly unique class of public safety officer. VPSO’s receive basic training at the Alaska Department of Public Safety Training Academy. VPSO’s train alongside State Trooper Recruits and Municipal Police Officers from throughout Alaska for 15-weeks. In addition, VPSO’s receive an additional 2-weeks of basic fire training.
If you have the desire to be a part of this elite group of public safety professionals please visit our Careers page to learn more about the process to become a Village Public Safety Officer.