Homeland Security: DHS' Efforts to Enhance First Responders' All-Hazards Capabilities Continue to Evolve: Report to the Chairman and Ranking Democratic Member, Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, House of Representatives [open pdf - 1MB]
"The events of September 11, 2001, have resulted in a greater focus on the role of first responders in carrying out the nations emergency management efforts. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is the primary federal entity responsible for ensuring that first responders, such as police, fire, emergency medical, and public health personnel, have the capabilities needed to provide a coordinated, comprehensive response to any large-scale crisis. In the last 4 years DHS has awarded $11.3 billion to state and local governments to enhance capabilities, primarily to prevent, prepare for, respond to and recover from acts of terrorism. Presidential directives instruct DHS to develop a national all-hazards approach - preparing all sectors of society for any emergency event including terrorist attacks and natural or accidental disasters. This report addresses the following questions: (1) What actions has DHS taken to provide policies and strategies that promote the development of the all-hazards emergency management capabilities of first responders? (2) How do first responders emergency management capabilities for terrorist attacks differ to capabilities needed for natural or accidental disasters? (3) What emphasis has DHS placed on funding awarded to state and local first responders to enhance all-hazards emergency management capabilities?"
Government Accountability Office (GAO): http://www.gao.gov/