Jane Furuseth: Volunteering to keep Bemidji safe
A special group of law enforcement volunteers, the Citizen Patrol, has been patrolling the streets of Bemidji since the group's formation in 1997. Citizen Patrol works to keep Bemidji safe by being the "eyes and ears" of the Bemidji Police Depart...
A special group of law enforcement volunteers, the Citizen Patrol, has been patrolling the streets of Bemidji since the group’s formation in 1997. Citizen Patrol works to keep Bemidji safe by being the “eyes and ears” of the Bemidji Police Department.
Volunteers with the program are screened and need to pass a background check before being trained by law enforcement. The training academy includes 6 sessions. Once training is completed, the time commitment is a four-hour shift-- either a morning, afternoon or evening shift.
The duties of the Citizen Patrol include:
· Patrolling Bemidji’s streets and neighborhoods
· Staying in constant radio contact with city officers and dispatchers
· Assisting at accident and emergency scenes
· Assisting with Crime scene protection
· Home and business security checks
· Security, traffic and crowd control at community events and parades
· Patrolling Bemidji’s parks
· Emergency Management Team involvement
· Participation in scheduled disaster drills
· Supporting search and rescue operations
A squad car and uniforms are provided for Citizen Patrol’s use by the Bemidji Police Department. Volunteers report suspicious behavior or activities immediately by radio to the police department.
Citizen Patrol is a Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) partner organization. In the last ten years RSVP volunteers have recorded 13,776 hours of service. RSVP volunteers are men and women, age 55 and older, who record their volunteer hours, are eligible for mileage reimbursement, and are covered under RSVP’s volunteer insurance.
For more information about the Retired Senior Volunteer Program or Citizen Patrol, contact Jane Furuseth, RSVP Area Coordinator, at (218) 766-9494.
To receive an application to volunteer with Citizen Patrol, contact Captain Arnold Hallan at (218) 444-2622.