|Smithsonian Institution Office of Protection Services|
Smithsonian Institution Office of Protection Services patch
|Common name||Smithsonian Security Guards|
|Operations jurisdiction||United States|
The Smithsonian Institution Office of Protection Services is the guard force of the Smithsonian Institution.
A security guard is a person employed by a public or private party to protect the employing party’s assets from a variety of hazards by enforcing preventative measures. Security guards do this by maintaining a high-visibility presence to deter illegal and inappropriate actions, looking for signs of crime or other hazards, taking action to minimize damage, and reporting any incidents to their clients and emergency services, as appropriate.
The Smithsonian Institution, established on August 10, 1846 "for the increase and diffusion of knowledge," is a group of museums and research centers administered by the Government of the United States. The institution is named after its founding donor, British scientist James Smithson. Originally organized as the "United States National Museum," that name ceased to exist as an administrative entity in 1967.
It is a federal guard force consisting of 850 officers with very limited special police authority tasked with protecting visitors, staff, property, and grounds of the federally owned and managed Smithsonian Institution museums and research centers in Washington, D.C., New York City, at the 2,800 acre Smithsonian Environmental Research Center in Maryland as well as oversight of the security operations at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama.
Special police usually describes a police force or unit within a police force whose duties and responsibilities are significantly different from other forces in the same country or from other police in the same force, although there is no consistent international definition. A special constable, in most cases, is not a member of a special police force (SPF); in countries in the Commonwealth of Nations and often elsewhere, a special constable is a voluntary or part-time member of a national or local police force or a person involved in law enforcement who is not a police officer but has some of the powers of a police officer.
The Federal Government of the United States is the national government of the United States, a federal republic in North America, composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and several island possessions. The federal government is composed of three distinct branches: legislative, executive, and judicial, whose powers are vested by the U.S. Constitution in the Congress, the President, and the federal courts, respectively. The powers and duties of these branches are further defined by acts of congress, including the creation of executive departments and courts inferior to the Supreme Court.
A museum is an institution that cares for (conserves) a collection of artifacts and other objects of artistic, cultural, historical, or scientific importance. Many public museums make these items available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. The largest museums are located in major cities throughout the world, while thousands of local museums exist in smaller cities, towns and rural areas. Museums have varying aims, ranging from serving researchers and specialists to serving the general public. The goal of serving researchers is increasingly shifting to serving the general public.
According to a 1978 report by the Comptroller General of the United States:
The Comptroller General of the United States is the director of the Government Accountability Office, a legislative branch agency established by Congress in 1921 to ensure the fiscal and managerial accountability of the federal government. The Budget and Accounting Act of 1921 "created an establishment of the Government to be known as the General Accounting Office, which shall be independent of the executive departments and under the control and direction of the Comptroller General of the United States". The act also provided that the "Comptroller General shall investigate, at the seat of government or elsewhere, all matters relating to the receipt, disbursement, and application of public funds, and shall make to the President when requested by him, and to Congress... recommendations looking to greater economy or efficiency in public expenditures." The Comptroller General is appointed for fifteen years by the President of the United States with the advice and consent of the Senate per 31 U.S.C. § 703. Also per 31 U.S.C. § 703 when the office of Comptroller General is to become vacant the current Comptroller General must appoint an executive or employee of the GAO to serve as the Acting Comptroller General until such time as a new Comptroller General is appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate.
In 1882 the Office of Public Buildings and Grounds was authorized to employ four watchmen to protect the buildings and grounds of the Smithsonian. The powers and duties of the watchmen were the same as those of the District's Metropolitan Police. Pursuant to 40 U.S.C. 193n, the Smithsonian was authorized to employ special policemen to police the buildings and grounds of the Institution. The special police were authorized to concurrently enforce, with the United States Park Police, the laws and regulations of the National Capital Parks.
According to the U.S Code (Title 40, Chapter 63, §6306), Smithsonian guards and National Zoo police officers are designated as special police. Subsection B outlines the powers of these special officers stating that they:
Title 40 of the United States Code outlines the role of Public Buildings, Properties, and Public Works in the United States Code.
(1) may, within the specified buildings and grounds, enforce, and make arrests for violations of, sections 6302 and 6303 of this title, any regulation prescribed under section 6304 of this title, federal or state law, or any regulation prescribed under federal or state law; and
(2) may enforce concurrently with the United States Park Police the laws and regulations applicable to the National Capital Parks, and may make arrests for violations of sections 6302 and 6303 of this title, within the several areas located within the exterior boundaries of the face of the curb lines of the squares within which the specified buildings and grounds are located."
The United States Park Police (USPP) is one of the oldest uniformed federal law enforcement agencies in the United States. It functions as a full-service law enforcement agency with responsibilities and jurisdiction in those National Park Service areas primarily located in the Washington, D.C., San Francisco, and New York City areas and certain other government lands. The United States Park Police is one of the few full-service police departments in the federal government that possess both state and federal authority. In addition to performing the normal crime prevention, investigation, and apprehension functions of an urban police force, the Park Police are responsible for policing many of the famous monuments in the United States.
As a uniformed force in accordance with subsection C, employees designated as special police for the Smithsonian "may be provided, without charge, with uniforms and other equipment as may be necessary for the proper performance of their duties, including badges, revolvers, and ammunition."
A uniform is a type of clothing worn by members of an organization while participating in that organization's activity. Modern uniforms are most often worn by armed forces and paramilitary organizations such as police, emergency services, security guards, in some workplaces and schools and by inmates in prisons. In some countries, some other officials also wear uniforms in their duties; such is the case of the Commissioned Corps of the United States Public Health Service or the French prefects. For some organizations, such as police, it may be illegal for non members to wear the uniform.
A revolver is a repeating handgun that has a revolving cylinder containing multiple chambers and at least one barrel for firing. Revolvers are a subset of handguns, distinct from pistols, which are defined as handguns with an integral chamber-barrel assembly. The revolver allows the user to fire multiple rounds without reloading after every shot, unlike older single shot firearms. After a round is fired the hammer is cocked and the next chamber in the cylinder is aligned with the barrel by the shooter either manually pulling the hammer back or by rearward movement of the trigger.
Ammunition is the material fired, scattered, dropped or detonated from any weapon. Ammunition is both expendable weapons and the component parts of other weapons that create the effect on a target. Nearly all mechanical weapons require some form of ammunition to operate.
The National Zoological Park Police being as a Federal Law Enforcement Agency that represents one of the five original full service police forces in the Washington District of Columbia share full police powers within the District of Columbia, in addition has a Congressional mandate in the form of a cooperative agreement with the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia to assist with law enforcement and crime prevention in a directed patrol areas in the Second, Third and Fourth Police Service areas around the National Zoological Park.
There are several position levels within the Office of Protection Services:
Smithsonian Museum officers in New York state are members of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge #38 while officers in the District of Columbia belong to the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) Local 2463. The Fraternal Order of Police is a national labor union of law enforcement officers and agents.
The United States Marshals Service (USMS) is a federal law enforcement agency within the U.S. Department of Justice. It is the oldest American federal law enforcement agency and was created by the Judiciary Act of 1789 during the presidency of George Washington as the Office of the United States Marshal. The USMS as it stands today was established in 1969 to provide guidance and assistance to Marshals throughout the federal judicial districts. USMS is an agency of the United States executive branch reporting to the United States Attorney General, but serves as the enforcement arm of the United States federal courts to ensure the effective operation of the judiciary and integrity of the Constitution.
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is an American labor union representing over 670,000 employees of the federal government, about 5,000 employees of the District of Columbia, and a few hundred private sector employees, mostly in and around federal facilities. AFGE is the largest union for civilian, non-postal federal employees and the largest union for District of Columbia employees who report directly to the mayor. It is affiliated with the AFL-CIO.
In some countries, security police are those persons employed by or for a governmental agency or corporations with large campuses who provide police and security services to those agencies' properties.
The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) is a fraternal organization consisting of sworn law enforcement officers in the United States. It reports a membership of over 325,000 members organized in 2,100 local chapters (lodges), state lodges, and the national Grand Lodge. The organization attempts to improve the working conditions of law enforcement officers and the safety of those they serve through education, legislation, information, community involvement, and employee representation.
The Federal Protective Service (FPS) is the uniformed security police division of the National Protection and Programs Directorate of the United States Department of Homeland Security. FPS is "the federal agency charged with protecting and delivering integrated law enforcement and security services to facilities owned or leased by the General Services Administration (GSA)"—over 9,000 buildings—and their occupants.
The Metropolitan Police Department (MPD), officially the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia (MPDC), is the law enforcement agency for the District of Columbia, in the United States. With approximately 3,900 officers and 400 civilian staff, it is the sixth-largest municipal police department in the United States. The department serves an area of 68 square miles (180 km2) and a population of 672,228 people.
The United States Capitol Police (USCP) is a federal law enforcement agency charged with protecting the United States Congress within the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its territories. The USCP is the only full service federal law enforcement agency responsible to the legislative branch of the U.S. government.
The Supreme Court of the United States Police is a small U.S. federal law enforcement agency headquartered in the District of Columbia, whose mission is to ensure the integrity of the constitutional mission of the U.S. Supreme Court by protecting the Supreme Court building, the Justices, employees, guests, and visitors. In accordance with 28 U.S.C. § 672, the Supreme Court Police falls under the jurisdiction of the Marshal of the United States Supreme Court who is appointed by the Supreme Court. The Marshal and the Supreme Court Police are authorized by 40 U.S.C. § 6121 to police the Supreme Court Building and protect the Justices, employees of the Court, and visitors to the Court.
The U.S. Federal Reserve Police is the law enforcement unit of the Federal Reserve System, the central banking system of the United States.
Company police, also called private police, are privately paid law enforcement officers who work for a private company rather than a municipal, county, state, or national agency.
The United States Pentagon Police (USPPD) is the official federal police agency of the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and is a subsidiary organization of the Pentagon Force Protection Agency (PFPA).
The District of Columbia Protective Services Division is a division of the Department of General Services of the District of Columbia Government, responsible for maintaining order and providing police and security services at and around "all properties owned, leased or otherwise under the control of the Government of the District of Columbia."
The federal government of the United States empowers a wide range of law enforcement agencies to maintain law and public order related to matters affecting the country as a whole.
Law enforcement in New York City is carried out by numerous law enforcement agencies. New York City has the highest concentration of law enforcement agencies in the United States.
The United States Air Force Police are the civilian uniformed police service of the United States Air Force, responsible for the force protection of assets and all aspects of law enforcement on U.S. Air Force installations, and other facilities operated by United States Air Force.
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