The purpose of starting the VIPS Program was to bridge the gaps between the Police Department and the people they serve. Unfortunately, for years law enforcement agencies have shrouded themselves in secrecy. As a result, much of the public does not understand why Police officers handle some incidents the way they do. The public is not aware generally of the legal requirements that come to play. The VIPS Program is intended not only to remedy some of the misunderstandings but to allow private citizens to experience some of the training and to have some "hands on" experience with some situations that are normally not experienced outside law enforcement circles.
The Retired Senior Volunteer Police Program members provide service to the entire City meeting many areas of need. The trained volunteers are involved in:
This type of cooperation allows implementation of the aforementioned programs without additional costs to the City. In a small, tourist oriented community, such as Ashland, the program places VIPS volunteers (the tax paying citizens) in direct contact with tourists that frequent our community. Such contact helps to establish a positive image of "good will ambassadors" ready to serve as well as providing additional police presence on the streets.