The Department of Homeland Security may establish law enforcement deployment teams that could be sent to assist communities during disasters, reports Congressional Quarterly. The agency's senior law enforcement adviser hopes to have a draft report this year. “In the after actions from [Hurricane] Katrina, it became very clear that there was a missing piece in the overall response structure of the country,” said Richard Cashdollar, an adviser to the Major Cities Chiefs Association.
DHS, FEMA, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, and the Major County Sheriffs' Association are working on the initiative. DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff mentioned it last month at the National Congress for Secure Communities. A proposal from the Major Cities Chiefs Association calls for 10 regional teams, with up to 500 law enforcement officers, who could deploy fully self-supported for two weeks. Law enforcement personnel would would be formed around a major sheriff's department or police department.