The San Mateo County Sheriff’s Communications Unit (SCU) is one of ten (10) volunteer units that make up the Sheriff’s Emergency Services Bureau (ESB). The ESB is comprised of over 350 civilian volunteers who volunteer their time to the Sheriff’s Office and the citizens of San Mateo County. The SCU is comprised of 35 Amateur Radio operators who provide Communications and Logistical support during many different types of operations. Some of these include Disasters, Search & Rescue Events, Community Events, Trainings and Public Preparedness (Weekly Ham Radio Net & SMC Alert). 

The Sheriff’s Communications Unit is divided into three levels of membership: Full Member, Trainee Member & Aux Comm.

Full Member:

A communications volunteer who has completed the SCU training program, has passed a county background check and is qualified to deploy many of the communications vehicles and assets operated by the Sheriff’s Office. They also participate in and rotate as net control for the San Mateo County Sheriff’s ACS weekly net.

Trainee Member:

A communications volunteer who is training with the SCU to become a full member. They can participate in the same event and callouts as a full member but must be accompanied by at least one full member. They also participate in and occasionally assist with running the San Mateo County Sheriff’s ACS weekly net.

Auxiliary Communicator - Aux Comm:

A communications volunteer who would like to be affiliated with the SCU but may not want to participate in the entire program. They are encouraged to participate in trainings, meetings, events and the San Mateo County Sheriff’s ACS weekly net. The main goal is to train and equip additional amateur communicators for use during community events, exercises and emergencies.