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Law Enforcement Grants Support Community Safety

August 01, 2023

Every day, brave men and women put their lives on the line to protect our communities. We want to ensure they have the resources, training and education they need to do it well. 

FSA created the law enforcement grant program to distribute funding, donated by FSA members, where it is most needed. The FSA’s Board of Directors strategically chose three grant opportunities to provide funding: bulletproof vests, training scholarships and shared assets. Since the grant program’s inception, the FSA has distributed more than $4.9 million to Florida sheriff’s offices. Here is what you need to know about each of the three law enforcement grant programs and how you can get involved. 

Bulletproof Vest Program 

Saving lives is an essential element of public safety. According to the Florida Sheriffs Risk Management Fund, officers who do not routinely wear body armor are 3.4 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries to the torso than officers who do. That’s why the Florida Sheriffs Association encourages all deputies to wear their vest every day and is passionate about providing life-saving bulletproof vests to counties that otherwise can’t afford them.  

Bulletproof vests can be expensive to supply, however, with some units costing up to $1,000 each. The bulletproof vest grant program assists sheriffs’ offices with purchasing bulletproof vests when new deputies arrive and replenishing vests when the expiration date mandates replacement.  

Training Scholarship Program 

Our sheriffs’ offices in Florida have a reputation for being the best of the best, and the FSA provides free training to sheriffs, deputies and other personnel to help uphold that standard. However, some training events have a registration fee, and many agencies even have difficulty in funding per diem, mileage and hotel costs.  

The purpose of the training scholarship grant program is to give staff from fiscally constrained sheriffs’ offices opportunities to attend FSA conferences and training events. The scholarships reimburse agencies so their staff can attend FSA training events at no cost. This allows more personnel to receive leadership training and network with the industry’s leading technology providers.  

Shared Asset Program  

We believe that we, as law enforcement agencies and supporters, are at our best when we work together, and the shared asset grant program embodies that value in a practical way.  

The program provides funds for assets that sheriffs’ offices can share regionally, such as boats, utility terrain vehicles, drones and speed trailers. How it works is well illustrated by a recent success story from the Taylor County Sheriff’s Office, which requested funding last year from the FSA Shared Asset Program to purchase a regional Mobile Emergency Communications Center. The MECC is a 35-foot unit that can be utilized as a basic command center and can be scaled up to be a fully operational MECC when needed.  

The sharing of resources enhances sheriffs’ abilities to respond to the needs of their communities as well as their neighboring sheriffs when in need. 

Support the Law Enforcement Grant Program 

When it comes to protecting the men and women who protect us, every dollar of funding counts. When you donate to the FSA, you can specifically earmark it for the FSA Grant Program. Whether you choose one of these three programs, or simply indicate you want the funds to go where they are most needed, you can be assured that your contribution is making a positive impact on your community. 

Not an FSA member yet? Joining the Florida Sheriffs Association is a tangible way to express your support for the work that our sheriffs do to protect families like yours every day. Anyone who wants to support law enforcement can become an honorary member, even if they are not in the field.  

Donate today or click here to become an FSA member.