There are almost 50 million foodborne illnesses "of various types" in the United States, and over 3,000 deaths annually. Those are the grim statistics that persuaded the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, the FDA, and NACCHO to expand and upgrade programs already in place to detect, control, and prevent the spread of foodborne diseases in cities and states throughout the country.
The numbers are staggering - U.S. subway systems carry literally billions of passengers every year, while all of the nation's airlines combined carry less than one billion! Today, airline passenger screening is routine, and reasonably thorough. However, there is little if any screening of subway passengers, making subways an easier target for a possible terrorist attack.
The so-called "standardization" of equipment is intended to lower costs, simplify procurement decisions, and also improve training and operational capabilities - theoretically, at least. When the standards previously approved are not followed, though, or are simply ignored, new and complex difficulties follow in short order. When those difficulties complicate CBRNE operations, the results could be almost cosmic in nature.
From the Pre-Colonial Era to the present, America has been a nation of volunteers. The tradition of neighbors helping neighbors is probably more important today, though, than ever before. The cost of dealing with a "relatively minor" CBRNE incident is prohibitively expensive, and it is likely to be years before, if ever, current budgetary restrictions can be eased even slightly.
Eight "Centers of Excellence" established; a massive international "Challenge" competition; and a stunning, rapidly expanding, interest in the once arcane science and profession of digital forensics and various related fields. Those are but a few of the notable DC3 accomplishments achieved to date, but additional domains and designations are just over the horizon.
U.S. intelligence experts and analysts are in general agreement that the protection of highly classified information is not only a "gentlemanly" goal, but also vital to the nation's survival. However, the quality and accuracy of that information also needs to be protected, particularly in an age when there is a massive daily flow of data and content to cope with ... and a tidal wave of communication that is false, malicious, and misleading as well.
Numerous tangible "things" and a broad spectrum of managers and operational personnel are needed to create and improve the nation's physical resilience and recovery capabilities. The process starts, though, in the think tanks and sometimes esoteric planning sessions that determine what specific actions should be taken - when, how, and in what order - and what complications, costs, and conceptual considerations are likely to be involved.
Most U.S. states and major cities, and the nation as a whole, are now better prepared to cope with terrorist attacks and natural disasters than they were prior to 9/11. But the gains made over the past decade will need a steady stream of continued funding, both to maintain the higher level of preparedness capabilities now evident and to protect the U.S. homeland and its people from the even greater dangers lying in wait just over the horizon.
In today's complex world, information technology (IT) systems serve as both the intellectual libraries and operational brains of virtually all components of the vital infrastructures of businesses, utilities, and the organizations and agencies of all levels of government. For this reason, among others, the maintenance, protection, and preservation of IT systems have now moved to the forefront of the nation's high-tech operational and preparedness priorities.
"Treat your employees right and they will treat the customers right." That is both the motto and the official policy of the Sacramento, California, Police Department (P.D.). And, thanks to some helpful advice from Target and other area businesses, the results show it - a surprising drop in the local crime rate, for example, despite recent budget cutbacks.