|Smithsonian Institution Office of Protection Services|
|Operations jurisdiction||United States|
The Smithsonian Institution Office of Protection Services is the guard force of the Smithsonian Institution.
It is a federal guard force consisting of 850 officers with 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.
According to a 1978 report by the Comptroller General of the United States:
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.
There are several position levels within the Office of Protection Services:
Smithsonian Museum officers in New York state and District of Columbia belong to the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) Local 2463. Membership into the FOP in NYS is optional.
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