DHS forms Preparedness Task Force

The formation of a local, state, tribal and federal Preparedness Task Force has been announced by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

The council of experts making up the task force are charged with assessing the current state of the nation's disaster preparedness and making recommendations to Napolitano about methods to building resiliency in communities nationwide.

“Enhancing preparedness across our nation requires close collaboration between all levels of government,” Napolitano said. “The recommendations of this Task Force—comprised of emergency management and homeland security experts from states, cities and tribes across the country—will help guide our ongoing efforts to ensure the resilience of communities throughout the nation.”

Thirty-five members of local, state and tribal governments constitute the task force. Many of the task force members have previously served within the federal government and offer a diverse cross section of homeland security and emergency management mission experience.

Additionally, the task force will engage Congressional partners, private sector, and non-governmental and development organizations through a variety of outreach activities.

The task force, which is expected to deliver its recommendations in September, comes as part of the 2010 DHS Appropriations Act, which called for a task force responsible for “making recommendations for all levels of government regarding: disaster and emergency guidance and policy; federal grants; and federal requirements” and emphasizing the updating of identification preparedness policies, guidelines and grant program.