Integration Of Volunteer And Law Enforcement Activities In State And Society Interests


Russia has always remained a state with rich traditions of assisting various, especially socially unprotected layers and groups of the population. The Grand Prince Vladimir laid the traditions of the charity back during the baptism of Rus. Ivan IV provided charity to the peasants in the years of the crop failure. Along with the charity, as the provision of gratuitous assistance to socially unprotected citizens, the traditions of the participation of the Russian population in the law enforcement and the protection of public order also have a history dating back centuries. During the formation and gradual development of the internal affairs bodies in the Russian Empire, both in urban settlements and rural municipalities, the population was actively involved in law enforcement, preventive healthcare and in the suppression of illegal behaviour. Charity and law enforcement activities of citizens in the pre-Soviet period were not directly integrated. The Soviet period of the development of Russia and the social activity of its citizens shows us the gradual "extinction" of the charitable activities of adult citizens and the increasing role of adolescent activity in this direction called the Timurs movement. The created harmonious system collapsed with the termination of the Soviet Union. The current stage of legal regulation and state support of various forms of volunteer and law enforcement activities in the interests of the state and society creates the prerequisites for their integration. The purpose of this article is to analyze and formulate directions for such integration.

Keywords: Civil societylaw enforcementvolunteer movement


Currently, the role and significance of the practical activities of various non-governmental public associations of various humanitarian socially useful goals, including law enforcement, whose activities are aimed at achieving socially significant, have significantly increased. The President of the Russian Federation Putin repeatedly emphasized this in his speeches. In particular, on December 5, 2019, on Volunteer Day, speaking at a meeting with representatives of volunteer organizations in Sochi at the Sirius educational centre, the Head of State noted the significance and scale of the unfolding volunteer movement. “Now there are more than 15 million volunteers in our country - this is a huge army,” said the President of Russia (Reshetnev, 2019).

One of the fundamental areas of voluntary (volunteer) activity is the assistance of law enforcement officials in conducting search activities concerning wanted persons. It is during the implementation of such a component of volunteering those participants in volunteer movements and communities active collaborate with participants in public law enforcement associations. The purpose of this study is to scrutiny the legal foundations of voluntary (volunteer) activities, the activities of public associations of law enforcement orientation, as well as the study of the integration of socially useful activities of representatives of both areas of socially active activity of citizens in the interests of the state and society.

Problem Statement

Discussing the possible ways of integrating volunteer and law enforcement activities in the Russian Federation in the interests of both the state and society, we believe that in order to achieve significant results of such a study, we need to identify and resolve any problems.

1. Legal regulation is exceptionally similar, both in its socially and stately significant goal, and in the practical implementation of areas of social activity, manifestations of social activity in the form of volunteering (Volunteering) and the form of participation in the public law enforcement associations, voluntary people's squads, and other forms.

2. It is necessary to identify possible ways to integrate socially oriented, law enforcement and other state and significant public manifestations of the civic activity of the population of Russia to achieve the interests of the state and society.

3. It is necessary to develop and propose their well-grounded vision of possible ways to improve the quality of the considered integration of the voluntary (volunteer) and law enforcement activities of Russian citizens in the interests of the state and society.

Research Questions

The subject studied in this article is the norms of the current Russian federal legislation regulating the activities of voluntary (volunteer) associations of citizens and the forms of participation of citizens in the protection of public order.

Federal Law of 11.08.1995 N 135-ФЗ "On Charity and Volunteering (Volunteering)".

Federal Law of 02.04.2014 N 44-ФЗ "On the participation of citizens in the protection of public order".

Purpose of the Study

The goal of this work is the analysis of the current state and possible prospects for the integration of the socially useful efforts of organizations, associations and individuals in the framework of the voluntary (volunteer) and law enforcement activities, carried out by relevant public associations, voluntary people's squads, non-staff police officers in the interests of the state and society.

Research Methods

Methods of legal and contextual analysis of the regulatory documents are used for determination of the necessary legal foundations of the analyzed voluntary (volunteer) activities and citizen participation in the protection of public order.

A comparative analysis of the main areas of activity of the volunteer organizations and public associations and law enforcement organizations was carried out by using the method of comparative legal analysis.

The historical features of the formation in the Russian Federation of institutions of volunteering and public cooperation of citizens with the state law enforcement agencies were studied by using the method of historical legal and retrospective analysis.

The development of proposals for the possible improvement of the integration of volunteer (volunteer) activities of citizens and the activities of the public associations, law enforcement organizations in the interests of the state and society were carried out by using scientific methods of induction and deduction, the method of forwarding planning.


The central issue of this study is the current state and prospects for the integration of volunteer and law enforcement activities in the Russian Federation in the interests of the state and society. Russia is a state with a long history; therefore, the topic of active participation of members of society not only in charity but also in the protection of public order is by no means new.

As Gabdrakhmanova (2012) notices, the charity was fixed at the normative level in Russia in 988, when, after the official adoption of Christianity in Russia, Grand Prince Vladimir secured by decree the charitable distribution of bread to the poor citizens from the princely court. For many decades, the traditions of charity and helping others in Russia and the Russian Empire have expanded and developed. The stage of the formation of capitalism in Russia in the last quarter of the nineteenth century and right up to the events of 1917 was marked by the rapid growth of labour productivity and gross domestic product, and also by the charity provided by merchants and industrialists. As Lavrinenko (2004) notices, charity houses, elementary schools for children of the poor and peasants were built all over the country at the expense of benefactors.

The practice of the participation of citizens, representatives of society in the protection of public order, assistance to law enforcement officials as well as the charity has a long history. Appearing during the reign of Peter I, regular police units were few and could not adequately cope with their duties of protecting "public well-being" and combating crime. Detachments of city guards were created voluntarily in governorate and uyezd cities. Their duties had included not only monitoring compliance of fire safety rules but, above all, assisting police officers. Moreover, each representative of much more than a utilitarian profession, as a janitor, was unconditionally considered as a freelance police officer, who was involved in law enforcement activities. They also were obliged to inform the okolotochny`s officer about all incidents and permanent or temporary residents and strangers, who appeared on the serviced territory of the courtyard (Akhmedov, 2008).

Throughout its pre-Soviet period of historical development, Russia remained an agrarian country, up to ninety-eight per cent of the population of which was the rural population. A characteristic feature of citizen participation in law enforcement to protect public order in counties and volosts of the Russian Empire was the active participation of the rural population in law enforcement activities. However, participation in such activities was not always voluntarily. The rural population, subsequently the peasant community, teams of desaytsky and sotsky (allocated one out of ten and one out of one hundred souls of the rural population) had been obliged to help police officers in maintaining order and capturing the "robbers" to help captains-ispravnic, ustavnoj pristavs and uryadniks (Malygin, 2005).

It should be noted that during the Soviet stage of the history of Russia, the topic of charity, volunteering was mostly forgotten or "pushed" into the background of public life. It was believed that the Soviet man was provided with everything necessary; the state takes care of him (Belokryltseva et al., 2005). However, we believe that it is necessary to mention more than a specific stage of the Soviet period of Russia when the topic of charity was again activated and received approval from state structures. We believe that such a period of a brief renaissance of the state-oriented charity was the years of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 when not only prominent figures of science and art but also ordinary citizens voluntarily gave back their accumulated savings for the acquisition of military equipment to support the front. It is widely known that Messing handed over the fees accumulated from his speeches to the People's Commissariat of Finance of USSR with a request to purchase a fighter plane on them. The request was granted, and two fighter jets were purchased with the artist's money (Volodarsky, 2007). After the victorious end of the war, the charitable activity of citizens was reduced almost to zero.

It is worth pointing out that while adult's participation in charity and volunteerism in the RSFSR was allowed, children's initiative in this area was encouraged only during the military period. Having been published in 1940, the novel by Gaidar (1964) "Timur and his team" has become a kind of a textbook of the volunteer activity for many generations of Soviet schoolchildren. The Timur's movement, without exaggeration, swept the whole country, lasting until the collapse of the Soviet Union.

A completely different situation in the Soviet Union and in the RSFSR was with the voluntary and gratuitous assistance of citizens to the state in the law enforcement sphere. The very appearance of the police force, which came to replace the abolished police force in 1917, revealed the emergence of a new law enforcement force - the armed people (Aksenov, 2001). It was during the Soviet period that such forms of the voluntary participation of citizens in the protection of law and order and the fight against crime, as voluntary people's squads, received their highest development. Under Komsomol organizations, the Komsomol and student operational units of law enforcement and crime control were formed. Under the territorial internal affairs bodies at the district level, the institute of non-staff police officers quite actively and fruitfully carried out their publicly useful law enforcement mission (Borisenko & Kriger, 1997).

The beginning of the current stage of national statehood coincided with the simultaneous denial of many of the positive aspects and achievements of the Soviet era, with which voluntary people's squads were actually abolished. However, extreme impoverishment of the bulk of the Russian population could not but affect the absence of an increase in the number of facts of the interior, domestic charity (Gulyakov et al., 2018). Significant batches of foreign charitable aid began to come to Russia, which the state actively accepted not thinking about what long-term conditions this aid had meant.

The officially modern stage of the development of the charity institute in Russia began in August 1995 with the adoption by the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation of the federal law "On charity and charitable organizations".

In accordance to Part 1 of Article 1 of the aforementioned federal legislative act, activities of individuals and organizations carried out on a voluntary and selfless basis, involving the implementation of various types of work and the provision of services by individuals should be considered as charitable activities in Russia on an unselfish basis. It also includes the free transfer of property to citizens and legal entities and the provision of other assistance to those in need.

With the advent of the public, non-profit organizations in Russia, that unites socially active citizens to help individual citizens and public institutions, the state had faced the question of the need to give voluntary (volunteer) organizations legal status and legislative mediation of their activities. In February 2018, the relevant changes to the law on charitable activities and charitable organizations were introduced, defining both the concept and the main activities of volunteer organizations in our country. The name of the federal legislative act itself, which in its current edition was called "On Charity and Volunteering (Volunteering)", has also changed.

At present on the territory of the Russian Federation, it is necessary to consider activities carried out exclusively voluntarily, which are carried through by its partakers in the form of gratuitous work, free services in order to achieve the goals, specified in the charitable legislation.

Among the main activities of modern volunteer organizations, we include the following:

- Social (including material) support of socially disadvantaged citizens carried out on a voluntary and free basis,

- Participation in measures to save the population from natural and human-made disasters, their consequences, providing them with first aid and social assistance and rehabilitation,

- Improvement of the interethnic, transnational and interfaith relations in society,

- Gratuitous support for the family, public health, science and culture throughout the country,

- Assistance in organizing and conducting sports events,

- Protection of the animals and the environment, culture and cultural heritage of the country,

- Help in the patriotic and moral education of the young generation,

- Assisting in the development and dissemination of social, socially useful advertising,

- Participation in the prevention of socially dangerous behaviour of individuals in the state.

The first and most successful project implemented by volunteer organizations is assistance to the law enforcement agencies in conducting search activities for the missing citizens and especially juveniles and minors (Dyakov & Kravtsova, 2019).

Currently, in the "piggy bank" of events successfully implemented by volunteers, we find hundreds of found and rescued citizens; successfully hold the 2013 Universiade, the 2014 Olympic Games and the 2018 World Cup. Now the volunteers have set themselves the dangerous and challenging task of providing social assistance to the elderly and incapable citizens during quarantine activities associated with the coronavirus pandemic declared by the World Health Organization in 2020.

The second component of our study of socially and publicly useful activities of the population in Russia is an analysis of the participation of citizens in the protection of public order. The legal history of this issue is of rather great interest for researchers and fully reflects the federal character of our state (Egoryshev & Egorysheva, 2010).

For a long time in Russia, there was no federal legislation that defines the grounds and procedure for the law enforcement activity of citizens (Vachaev & Zhernovoj, 2008). In connection with this fact, we feel the urgent need for legal mediation of this kind of public relations. The legislative bodies of a significant number of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation have adopted regional laws that determine the grounds and limits of the law enforcement activities of citizens, measures of their social and legal protection (Falalaev, 2013).

In April 2014, a federal law that determines the participation of citizens in various events related to the protection of law and order in Russia entered into force. According to Clause 1, Part 1, Article 2 of this legislative act it is necessary to consider the assistance provided by citizens to both the state-federal law enforcement bodies in the person of internal affairs bodies and the police and other bodies classified as law enforcement. These bodies protect citizens, their constitutional rights, the interests of the society and state from illegal encroachments that are committed in the places classified as public.

The law establishes the following forms of citizen participation in law enforcement

1) Rendering by a citizen of assistance to the internal affairs body (police) in part:

- informing the police department about facts of violation of legal requirements and immediate threats to the rule of law,

- citizens direct participation in law enforcement to protect public order,

- citizens participation in the law enforcement about sport, cultural and other public events,

- citizen participation as an expert in the work of expert and other deliberative bodies created to address law enforcement issues,

2) citizen participation in the search for missing persons,

3) freelance cooperation with the police,

4) citizen's direct participation in the work of various public law enforcement associations.

It should be noted that in the activities of volunteer associations and the public associations of a law enforcement orientation, there are more than similar directions for the implementation of socially and stately useful social activity of citizens. Within the framework of these activities, the leaders of such organizations should build the integration of the activities of such forms of the public initiative of the population.


In this study, we have analyzed the history of creation, the legal basis and the main lines of activity of volunteer associations and citizen participation in law enforcement. We consider it necessary to formulate the main, in our opinion, ways of integrating these areas of socially useful activities of citizens.

1. Assessing the enormous power-public and material support provided by the state authorities at the federal and regional levels of the activities of volunteer associations, we believe that a certain amount of this kind of support should be redirected. It ought to be done in order to help law enforcement activities of citizens providing less visible but often more state and meaningful social help.

2. Consultative-coordinating non-governmental bodies should be established to coordinate the socially useful activities of volunteer organizations and public associations of a law enforcement orientation.

3. We believe that a significant amount of the considered integration functions can be delegated to the Public Councils at the terusedritorial representations of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia.

4. For the further integration of volunteer and law enforcement activities of citizens in the interests of the state and society, it is necessary to develop methodological recommendations on the organization and direct implementation of this kind of joint socially useful activity.


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National interest, national identity, national security, public organizations, linguocultural identity, linguistic worldview

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Nikonova, Z. V., Vyacheslav, V. V., Aleksandr, S. G., & Vladimir, G. V. (2021). Integration Of Volunteer And Law Enforcement Activities In State And Society Interests. In I. Savchenko (Ed.), National Interest, National Identity and National Security, vol 102. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 1116-1123). European Publisher.