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The City of Portland, Oregon

Police Bureau

Sworn to protect. Dedicated to serve.

Phone: 503-823-0000

Non-Emergency: 503-823-3333

1111 S.W. 2nd Avenue, Portland, OR 97204

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Public Safety Support Specialists

Job Scope

What Public Safety Support Specialists can do independently  (Note: This list is not exhaustive.)

• Write police reports for non-emergency situations that do not require police officer authority, and do not involve potential evidence, suspects, or a crime scene.
• Respond to:

- vehicle break-ins with no suspect information
- non-injury traffic collisions to facilitate information exchange between involved parties; coordinate tow services for disabled vehicles.
- bicycle thefts
- burglaries with no suspect information (the PS3 could summon a Criminalist to look for latent fingerprints or other latent evidence)
- Found/lost property
- Other thefts with no suspect information (stolen wallets, purses, other items)

• Conduct follow-up on property crimes where there is no suspect information, either by phone or in person, with an emphasis on crime victims’ rights and referrals to other City Bureaus.
• Perform property board-ups in cases where a window is broken but no one entered (they could also wait for the board-up vendor to come after officers have cleared the location to make sure there are no burglars inside, which would free up an officer)
• Walking patrols, if assigned by PPB sergeants
• Community engagement functions
• Attend neighborhood meetings, community and/or public events
• Assist with inventory and maintenance of PPB-issued equipment, excluding weapons and ammunition.
• Assist drivers in stalled vehicles and summon other necessary assistance; respond to pedestrians, bicyclists, and other community members in need of assistance.
• Assist with temporary street closures, detours and other public service duties identified by police supervisors.
• Broadcast and receive messages via police radio and Mobile Data Terminal (MDT); maintain contact with field units; ask for assistance when appropriate due to incident type and scope.
• Summon a police officer
• Deliver emergency food boxes to a family in need

What Public Safety Support Specialists Can Assist Officers With

• Assist police officers in searching for missing persons such as elderly adults, medically fragile adults, or children when there is no reason to believe they are a threat to themselves or the community.
• PS3s can also help sworn officers with things that, in the past, would have required the help of
another sworn officer. For example, a NRT team could bring PS3s along to inventory property seized at a search
warrant. PS3s could help canvas a neighborhood and collect video after a robbery or other crime.

What Public Safety Support Specialists Cannot Do Because They Do Not Have Police Authority

• PS3s do not have police authority, the power granted by the state to enforce criminal laws.
• PS3s cannot respond to calls by themselves if police authority is required.
• Search warrant service
• Make arrests
• Carry firearms
• Civil holds such as mental health or detox holds
• Any situation involving weapons or the potential for violence
• Traffic collisions where a citation is necessary (for example when someone doesn’t have insurance)
• Traffic collisions when a police investigation is required (trauma-entry injuries or traffic crimes, such as DUII or hit and run, although a PS3 could take a hit and run if the suspect is gone and there’s only property damage)
• Situations requiring community caretaking functions of police, such as forcing entry to a home to do a welfare check
• Persons crimes, such as assaults, sex crimes, and child/elder abuse
• PS3s will not serve as front desk clerks. There is already a position for this and that work is protected by AFSCME.
• PS3s will not drive patrol vehicles. They will have their own specially-marked vehicles.