volunteers in police service

YAKIMA, WA - The Yakima Police Department has a new program and they want you to be a part of it.

"The new program is called the VIPS program," said Yakima police officer Dustin Soptich. "The Volunteers In Police Service, and the program is about trying to provide an opportunity for community members to support the police department, but also give back to the community," 

The program is new to YPD, but it's a well established program across the nation that was implemented by George W. Bush after 9/11.

"If you want to do good police work a lot of the times you need the community's help," said Soptich.

Soptich says the best part of the program is that depending on your background, you can work with a specific unit.

"For example, we have a volunteer who will help the forensics unit enter specific things into a national database to help us communicate with other departments who are nationwide, but also in our local jurisdiction, so that we can communicate better and hopefully solve more crime."

As part of the process, all volunteers go through a background check.

Soptich, who is in charge of the program, says this is a step in the right direction.

"I think this if going to provide us an opportunity to show who we are and to be more personable with the community as a whole, because they'll be working next to us in a lot of areas.”

Soptich also mentioned there's a need for Spanish speaking volunteers.

If you'd like to sign up for this program you can reach out to Officer Soptich via email at vips@yakimawa.gov.

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