Dear Representatives Cicilline and Upton,
I am writing on behalf of the members of the Fraternal Order of Police to advise you of our support for H.R. 6538, the “Active Shooter Alert Act.”
Responding to an active shooter event is chaotic and can be fraught with peril, especially when the incident is not confined to one location. Law enforcement officers must prioritize preserving lives and ending the threat. Simultaneously, they need a way to notify the public about the incident, whether that is to avoid a certain area, shelter in place, or announce when the area is once again safe. The bill you have introduced is designed to improve the ways officers and agencies communicate with the public about active threats.
Your bill would establish a national coordinator within the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to establish and administer an Active Shooter Alert Communications Network. The Active Shooter Alert Coordinator, in coordination with other Federal components like the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), would develop best practices and training on the use of a secure communications system during an active shooter event. We believe as you do—having a network for informing the public during these critical incidents will save lives.
On behalf of the more than 364,000 members of the Fraternal Order of Police, I thank you for your efforts on this legislation and look forward to working with you to get it passed. If I can provide any additional assistance about this issue, please do not hesitate to contact me or Executive Director Jim Pasco in our Washington, D.C. office.