Frequently Asked Questions

VPSO Patch What is a Village Public Safety Officer?

Village Public Safety Officers (VPSO's) are dedicated concerned citizens living in rural areas within Alaska who assist their villages in all aspects of public safety. VPSOs do not carry firearms, although they are trained with non lethal weapons, such as pepper spray and expandable batons. VPSO's are generally the first to respond to calls for help from community members; hence their motto:

"First Responders - Last Frontier"

Who does a Village Public Safety Officer work for?

A VPSO is employed by the Native nonprofit corporation responsible for the area in which a VPSO lives. The selection of a VPSO in a particular village is jointly approved by the Village Government, the non-profit corporation and the Alaska State Troopers.

Is a Village Public Safety Officer a State employee?

No. A VPSO works for the Native nonprofit corporation. Law enforcement activities are supervised by the Alaska State Troopers.

What kind of training does a Village Public Safety Officer get?

A VPSO learns about law enforcement, first aid, fire fighting and other public safety issues by attending a ten-week VPSO Academy, which includes a two week fire fighting course, and annual training in a regional area near the village.

What are the qualifications for a Village Public Safety Officer?

A VPSO must be 21 years of age, a U.S. citizen, and be of good moral character.

To learn more about the qualifications please refer to "VPSO Qualifications" page.

Where do I apply to be a Village Public Safety Officer?

Persons interested in becoming a Village Public Safety Officer should contact the Native nonprofit corporations and check the employment opportunity page often for position openings.