Bulletproof Vest Partnership: What You Need to Know


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.

We get questions all the time about the BVP and how to take advantage of the funds available through the program. So, we went straight to the source. Below are several questions we asked and answers that were provided.

Q: How does the BVP program determine how agencies pick armor they purchase?

A: In order to qualify for BVP reimbursement, body armor must comply with the most current National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Justice Technology Information Center (JTIC) – Ballistic/Stab Armor Compliant Product List body armor standards, as of the date the body armor was ordered. See the links below:

Ballistic: https://www.justnet.org/compliant/ballistic_cpl.html

Stab: https://www.justnet.org/compliant/stab_cpl.html

Q: Do law enforcement agencies get to ask questions about armor to the program before purchasing?

A. Jurisdictions have two years to use awarded BVP funds. During this time, they can determine the type and threat level of vests that would best serve their needs. Additionally, jurisdictions are free to change the vest model that they submitted in a BVP application as long as the vest is on the latest NIJ standards list. BVP participants can contact the BVP Help Desk at: 1-877-758-3787 or vests@usdoj.gov for questions regarding the BVP Program.


Q: Is there any exchange of information for how to pick armor? Generally speaking, we want to know if there is any type of resources given to/available to agencies when purchasing armor. We have heard time and time again that some agencies just don’t know what is best for them and even what is out there. So would just like to hear more about this piece.

A. BVP participants that seek information on how to pick armor are provided web site links to the NIJ body armor standards during both the BVP application opening and award announcements that are sent via email to current BVP participants. Both the NIJ’s Selection and Application Guide NIJ Selection and Application Guide 0101.06 to Ballistic-Resistant Body Armor and information on uniquely fitted vests uniquely fitted vests are located both on BJA’s and NIJ’s websites.

The Bulletproof Vest Partnership is a fantastic program intended to support and provide partial reimbursement for police departments across the U.S. who are in need of new body armor. We are dedicated to assisting you in securing grant money for body armor, so please let us know if you need any help.