On March 2, the Eugene Police Department is rolling out the brand new volunteer Downtown Support Team to increase positive presence downtown and increase safety and security. Downtown is the cultural heart and economic engine of Eugene and it is a community priority to invest in solutions to support a vibrant downtown.
The Downtown Support Team is a creative enhancement to safety resources in downtown Eugene and not a replacement for any other Eugene Police Department services. This new team will help respond to community-wide concerns about downtown safety, cleanliness and activity.
- This new team of volunteers will add another layer to EPD’s alternative response plans. The volunteers will work in pairs, patrolling the streets on foot. They will be assisting EPD’s Community Services officers, Community Engagement Team and patrol officers as requested.
- The volunteers will be liaising with downtown businesses and community members in the area.
- They will provide eyes and ears for the department and will be a support to visitors and residents. Their distinctive, bright-yellow jackets and shirts will create some sunshine downtown even on rainy days!
- Volunteers for this team are skilled in listening and communicating and display a positive, supportive attitude. They are provided training in EPD and City of Eugene policies, as well as radio communication, de-escalation, First Aid/CPR/AED and more.
We’re always looking for highly-qualified candidates to join our team! For more information about the Volunteers in Policing Program and the Downtown Support Team, check out the webpage at https://www.eugene-or.gov/585/Volunteer-at-EPD or contact VIP Program Manager Lindy Smith at LSmith@eugene-or.gov or at 541-682-5355.
About the Volunteers in Policing Program
In 2022, 71 EPD volunteers contributed 11,310 hours of service to the department and the community with an added value of $338,735. These volunteers actively served in more than 30 positions throughout the department, including the Seniors on Patrol Team, the Image Retrieval Team, the Squad Car Maintenance Team, and the Cold Case Squad.
The Eugene Police Department’s Volunteers in Policing Program partners citizens and police in support of our crime prevention and community policing efforts. Volunteers have a front-row seat for behind-the-scenes operations of law enforcement. EPD recruits a wide range of volunteers from all demographics; including people at all ages (18+), levels of income, and diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds. When community members who receive police services are helping to design, prioritize, and even deliver services, a closer connection is made between the police department and the public. This is what community policing is all about.