The Village Public Safety Officer (VPSO) program provides rural Alaskan communities with public safety support services.
In communities associated with the program, citizens receive immediate response to emergencies without delays caused by weather or distance. VPSO work closely with Alaska State Troopers, and provide emergency medical response, search and rescue operations, fire prevention and suppression, disaster preparedness and response, public safety education, and community policing.
A VPSO is generally the first to respond to many calls for help from community members; hence their motto, "First Responders‐Last Frontier".
Funding for the VPSO Program is provided by the Alaska legislature and managed by the Department of Public Safety (DPS) as per Alaska Statute 18.65.670, and Alaska Administrative Code 13 AAC Chapter 96. These statutes and regulations provide guidelines on how the program is structured.
The statewide VPSO program is divided into 10 individual programs. Each program is administered by the participating organization which employs and supervises the VPSO. The participating organization manages daily operations and works with the local communities which receive VPSO services.