Office of Justice Programs: BVP/BASI

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 Bulletproof Vest Partnership

The Bulletproof Vest Partnership (BVP), created by the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Act of 1998 is a unique U.S. Department of Justice initiative designed to provide a critical resource to state and local law enforcement.

ONE MILLION BVP VESTS: Since 1999, the BVP program has awarded more than 13,000 jurisdictions, a total of $393 million in federal funds for the purchase of over one million vests (1,197,348 as of December, 2014). BVP is a critical resource for state and local jurisdictions that saves lives. Based on data collected and recorded by BJA staff, in FY 2012, protective vests were directly attributable to saving the lives of at least 33 law enforcement and corrections officers, in 20 different states, an increase 13.7% over FY 2011. At least 14 of those life-saving vests had been purchased, in part, with BVP funds.

New: The Bureau of Justice Assistance is pleased to announce the Fiscal Year 2015 BVP funds are available for use. The FY 2015 award funds may only be used for the latest National Institute of Justice (NIJ) compliant armored vests which are ordered on or after April 1, 2015. The deadline to request payments from the FY 2015 award funds is August 31, 2017.

The complete list of FY 2015 BVP awards can be viewed here.

The complete list of FY 2014 BVP awards can be viewed here.

The complete list of FY 2013 BVP awards can be viewed here.

Documentation Requirement: Grantees are required to keep documentation to support the BVP vest application and payment requests for at least a three year period.

Other Federal Funds: Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) funds or other federal funding sources may not be used to pay for that portion of the bullet proof vest (50%) that is not covered by BVP funds. JAG or other federal funds may be used to purchase vests for an agency, but they may not be used as the 50% match for BVP purposes.

NEW! UPDATED Mandatory Wear FAQs

Following two years of declining law enforcement officer line-of-duty deaths, the country realized a dramatic 37 percent increase in officer deaths in 2010. Fifty-nine of the 160 officers killed in 2010 were shot during violent encounters; a 20 percent increase over 2009 numbers. The U.S. Department of Justice is committed to improving officer safety and has undertaken research to review and analyze violent encounters and law enforcement officer deaths and injuries. Due to the increase in the number of law enforcement officer deaths, coupled with our renewed efforts to improve officer safety, beginning with FY 2011, in order to receive BVP funds, jurisdictions must certify, during the application process, that all law enforcement agencies benefitting from the BVP Program have a written "mandatory wear" policy in effect. This policy must be in place for at least all uniformed officers before any FY 2011 funding can be used by the agency. There are no requirements regarding the nature of the policy other than it being a mandatory wear policy for all uniformed officers while on duty. BJA strongly encourages agencies to consult the International Association of Chiefs of Police's Model Policy on Body Armor and to strongly consider all recommendations within that policy. This policy change was announced in October 2010 by Attorney General Holder after consulting with and receiving input from the law enforcement community.

The IACP has very generously provided both its Body Armor Model Policy and position paper to the BVP program. In order to obtain a copy of the Model Policy and position paper, jurisdictions must be registered with the BVP program. To obtain a copy of the Model Policy, contact the BVP Customer Support Center at 1-877-758-3787 or email

For additional information regarding this new BVP program requirement, click here.

 NIJ Advisory and Safety Notices
Current National Institute of Justice Body Armor Standard 0101.06

NEW 10-13-15: NIJ Safety Notice
9-15-15: NIJ Advisory Notice
8-27-15: NIJ Advisory Notice
Body Armor Labels: When In Doubt .... Check It Out (Click here for additional information)

Closed NIJ Advisory Notices and Safety Notices

Previous National Institute of Justice Body Armor Alerts

10-24-13: NIJ Advisory Notice
8-4-14: NIJ Advisory Notice
6-28-13: NIJ Advisory Notice
6-13-13: NIJ Advisory Notice
4-17-2013: NIJ Safety Notice
National Institute of Justice Body Armor Safety Initiative Website

Body Armor Safety Initiative Archive

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