Washington, DC – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced it is launching a program, based upon legislation authored by Senator Susan Collins, that helps to ensure first responders are able to access cutting edge technology and specialized training to help prevent and prepare for terrorist incidents. The Commercial Equipment Direct Assistance Program (CEDAP) will be administered by DHS’ Office of State and Local Government Coordination and Preparedness (SLGCP). It is designed to complement other DHS programs that also provide valuable funding and resources to first responders.
CEDAP is a pilot program based upon legislation that was authored by Senator Collins and introduced in the 108th Congress as S. 1612. The legislation authorized DHS to provide advanced counterterrorism technology, equipment, and specialized training to law enforcement agencies to help them deter, detect, and apprehend terrorists. The initiative is based upon the popular C-TAC program that provides equipment and training to law enforcement agencies for counter narcotic efforts. Senator Collins is the Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
“Police in Maine and across the nation are in need of counterterrorism technology, especially interoperable communication and detection equipment. This funding will get the latest equipment and training into the hands of those who need it most – the front line officers who protect our communities and who are first to respond to an attack,” said Senator Collins. “We must continue to do more to help first responders become first preventers – to help them apprehend terrorists and thwart attacks before they happen. We must also ensure that they have the best resources available to respond should an attack occur.”
“This program demonstrates the Department’s recognition of a principle that I have stressed since the attacks of 9/11; that the homeland security needs of our smaller communities – where terrorists have been known to plan and prepare for attacks — must not be ignored,” added Senator Collins.
The CEDAP program has the strong backing of the national law enforcement community including the International Association of Chiefs of Police and the National Sheriffs’Association.
“This pilot program will meet the special needs of smaller communities to ensure our preparedness efforts reach all of America,” said Matt Mayer, SLGCP Acting Executive Director. “The CEDAP will fill gaps where smaller jurisdictions have been unable to acquire needed equipment in the past.”
For more information, including an application kit for first responders: www.dhs.gov.