All Reserve Deputy candidates are required to go through the same stringent background checks and training as a full-time deputy sheriff. The extensive background process and drug screening assures that the agency's volunteer deputies are of good moral character and reputation. Prospective reserve candidates also undergo medical, psychological, and polygraph examinations.
Reserve deputies in training must complete their mandatory field training program within two years from the date they are sworn in as a Deputy Sheriff. This extensive training and evaluation program is the same one that the agency requires its full-time deputies complete. It is carefully designed to ensure that all of the agency's sworn personnel have a thorough understanding of local ordinances, agency policy, and law enforcement procedures.
In addition to academy training and required field training, Reserve Deputies must attend the same annual agency retraining and state certification retraining that is required of all deputies with the sheriff’s office. They must also attend monthly Reserve Unit training meetings, and are required to undergo regular firearms proficiency training.
Department policy mandates that Reserve Deputies perform a minimum of 16 hours of duty assignments each month, 12 of which must be in patrol. However most of the agency's Reserve Deputies volunteer much more than this minimum requirement. Reserve deputies are also subject to call outs for special assignments and emergencies.
During 2016 the Reserve Unit volunteered 25,392 man hours. This included 10,510 hours working in road patrol functions and 1,475 hours handling special details. In addition, the unit made 130 Felony Arrests, 176 Misdemeanor Arrests, issued 1,195 Traffic Citations and answered 7,260 calls for service. By utilizing an hourly rate of $ 30.00 an hour, the units’ volunteer hours resulted in a savings of $761,760 to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office.
“The Orange County Sheriff’s Office Reserve Unit is one of the most professional, well-trained volunteer policing units in the country. We are proud to call central Florida home, and to provide law enforcement services to the citizens and visitors of Orange County. If you would like information on becoming a reserve, please visit https://www.ocso.com/Careers/Employment-Information/Law-Enforcement-Positions” – Ross Wolf, Reserve Chief Deputy