01-Fa16-Homeland Security Challenge

The purpose of this course to examine: 1) the still-evolving discipline of homeland security in its effort to identify and neutralize the terrorist threat and 2) the incorporation of this threat to the all hazards response and recovery planning and actions of emergency managers. Terrorist events in 2001 dictated that federal, state, and local government organizations seek better ways to improve the security and safety of our nation and its people. These events led to the most comprehensive reorganization of the federal government with the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. The nation is going through an evolution in national security, addressing the issue of terrorism as it has never been in our history. Accordingly, homeland security is a relatively new, evolving discipline, subject to the actions of all branches of federal, state, and local governments. The evolution of homeland security as a concept, a legal framework, and the direction of national policies is described. The political, economic, and practical issues associated with homeland security are examined. The horrible events of September 11th have provided a great opportunity for improving the social and economic sustainability of our communities from all disasters and threats, not just terrorism. As vividly illustrated during Hurricane Katrina, an all hazards approach to both natural and man-made calamities is required by public safety officials and emergency managers. The identification and neutralization of the terrorist threat by homeland security must be wed to a robust response and recovery strategy to all hazards by emergency managers. An overview of the history of natural and technological threats and U.S. responses, such as national security strategies, homeland security decision directives, the National Response Framework, and the National Incident Management System (NIMS) is provided. In addition to reviewing the evolution of homeland security and the numerous terrorist related hazards, the primary concepts of emergency management will be closely examined.