OEC at IWCE: Day Two

Author: Ken Bradley, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) Office of External Affairs

International Wireless Communications Expo

The International Wireless Communications Expo (IWCE) is the leading event for communications technology, bringing over 7,000 industry professionals all in one place.  The Office of Emergency Communications (OEC) is partnering with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Science and Technology (S&T) at Exhibit Hall on Wednesday and Thursday in Booth #3345. First OEC is partnering with its federal and public safety partners in the border session today.

Emergency Communications along the Northern and Southern Borders

Did you know first responders have unique communications challenges just because they are close to the northern or southern border of the United States?  Emergency response agencies at all levels of government have the requirement to communicate (voice and data) just as others first responders throughout the country.  However, along the borders first responders can run into legal, geographic, spectrum, equipment, and interference issues.  The Department of Homeland Security works closely with its state, tribal, and federal partners to include the Federal Communications Commission and Department of State and their counterparts in Canada to include Public Safety Canada and the government of Mexico to address these interoperability challenges. 

OEC coordinates the Southwest Border Communications Working Group (SWBCWG) and the Canada-United States (CANUS) Communications Interoperability Working Group (CIWIG).  The these two groups include members from federal, state, provincial, tribal, territorial, and local first responder agencies along and across the United States Border.