DOJ looks at role of law enforcement during emergency
| 10.19.2006 | 05:51:07 | Views: 2654 | ID:
October 19 '06: The Department of Justice has released a new report focusing on the role of law enforcement during an emergency. In the report, the Department suggests that though medical response provides a critical foundation for emergency response and preparedness, "law enforcement will need to quickly coordinate its response with public health and medical officials, many of whom they may not have worked with previously."
"A department's ability to respond effectively to any emergency," the report reads, "public health or otherwise, greatly depends on its preparedness, and this is directly linked to the law enforcement agency's planning and its partnerships."Other factors facing law enforcement response and preparedness issues include: a dwindling workforce during an emergency; crowd control and vaccine/medical supply protection during a pandemic; strained resources; overwhelmed security forces; and investigation of suspected biological terrorism attacks. "In a large-scale incident, such as a pandemic," the report says, "law enforcement resources will quickly become overwhelmed, and law enforcement officials will have to balance their resources and efforts between these new responsibilities and everyday service demands." "All of this may have to be accomplished with a greatly diminished workforce, as some officers and their families may become infected and ill, and some personnel may determine that the risk of continuing to report to work is just too great to themselves or their families." The ability of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to respond effectively to an emergency will rely on the agencies' ability to communicate and forge relationships with other medical and fire fighting responder agencies and the law enforcement agencies' "panning and its partnerships."
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