DHS releases National Emergency Communications Plan
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has released a plan to assure that emergency responders nationwide will be able to communicate during crisis. The National Emergency Communications Plan (NECP) includes recommendations and milestones for accomplishing interoperability over the next five years consistent with the National Response Framework, National Incident Management System, National Preparedness Guidelines and Target Capabilities List.
NECP sets three specific goals and deadlines for federal, state, local and tribal governments to meet:
- By 2010, 90 percent of all high-risk urban areas included in the Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) must be able to demonstrate response-level emergency communications within one hour for routine events that involve multiple jurisdictions and agencies.
- By 2011, 75 percent of non-UASI jurisdictions must meet the first standard.
- By 2013, 75 percent of all jurisdictions can demonstrate response-level emergency communications within three hours of a significant event, as outlined in the DHS’ national planning scenarios.
NECP will set “measurable and sustainable improvements to operable and interoperable emergency communications nationwide,” said Homeland Security Under Secretary Robert Jamison in a statement. “It emphasizes the human element and cross-jurisdictional cooperation, going beyond simply buying new equipment,” Jamison said. “We have recently approved Statewide Communication Interoperability Plans for all 56 states and territories. Aligning these plans with the NECP will move emergency communications forward and further promote a coordinated nationwide strategy.”
More information on NECP is available at http://www.dhs.gov/xnews/releases/pr_1217529182375.shtm.