The Volunteers in Policing (VIP) Program
Formed in 1997 with eleven volunteers, the volunteer Marine Unit began patrolling the canals of Punta Gorda Isles, Burnt Store Isles, and the local portion of the Peace River. The program expanded in 1998 by adding receptionists in the police department lobby to greet visitors and direct inquiries to the proper personnel. In 1999, traffic control training was added to the program and in 2006 the enforcement of parking violations, marine codes, and city ordinances was included. Today the Volunteers in Policing program has grown to include more than 80 active volunteers who assist in nearly every component of the police department including patrol and traffic, marine patrol, records, community services, criminal investigations, community garden management, fingerprinting, the police pension board, and more!
The VIP program has become a vital part of our organization and have proven to be a tremendous asset to the department. Volunteers assist in specified tasks meant to supplement and support, rather than replace, sworn officers or civilian personnel.
Become a VIP
If you are interested in joining the Volunteers in Policing program or would like additional information about the program, please contact VIP Staff Coordinator Al Rusca at 941-575-5536 or by email at email@example.com.