Public trust positions

What are public trust positions? I thought I knew. I thought that public trust positions were positions where people took an oath to serve the public, and were often, though not always, licensed in some way. I thought judges, police officers, doctors, pharmacists and soldiers were all positions of public trust, but when I claimed this in a discussion recently, someone asked me for a cite, and I couldn’t find one. Perhaps I am wrong or perhaps I don’t know the right terminology to search for what I need. I’d just like to know for sure. Thanks.

In the U.S. government, a position of public trust is one requiring a security clearance.

Thanks, NameTag, but I already found that out with some research. I guess I wasn’t clear with my question. I apologize. What I’m wanting to know is, am I wrong in my assumption that the aforementioned professions are positions of public trust, and is it generally accepted that professions requiring an oath to serve the public are considered positions of public trust?

From the Code of Federal Regulations:


Sec. 731.106 Designation of public trust positions and investigative

(a) Risk designation. Agency heads shall designate every competitive service position within the agency at a high, moderate, or low risk level as determined by the position’s potential for adverse impact to the efficiency and integrity of the service. OPM will provide an example of a risk designation system for agency use in supplemental guidance.
(b) Public Trust positions. Positions at the high or moderate risk levels would normally be designated as ``Public Trust’’ positions. Such positions may involve policy making, major program responsibility, public safety and health, law enforcement duties, fiduciary responsibilities, or other duties demanding a significant degree of public trust; and positions involving access to or operation or control of financial records, with a significant risk for causing damage or realizing personal gain.
I am not certain, but I believe all Federal employees take or sign an oath (I did, at least). Taking an oath does not mean that one is automatically in a public trust position, and licenses have nothing to do with it at all.