Napolitano: ‘Homeland security begins with hometown security’

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jaanetHomeland security begins with hometown security, and with the men and women on the frontlines who dedicate themselves to keeping communities safe every day, said Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano during yesterday’s visit to Chicago.

“Through homeland security grants and the Recovery Act, we are helping local fire departments protect the jobs of veteran firefighters, rebuilding fire stations across the country, and providing first responders with the tools they need to do their jobs,” the secretary said when delivering remarks to the International Association of Fire Chiefs at Fire-Rescue International 2010.

Napolitano visited the Windy City to deliver remarks at the event, visit key critical infrastructure sites, and join Chicago Mayor Richard Daley to meet with government and industry stakeholders, law-enforcement officials and first responders to discuss the department’s continued commitment to protecting U.S. transportation systems and critical infrastructure.

During her remarks at the Fire-Rescue International 2010, Napolitano highlighted DHS’ ongoing efforts to help fire departments across the country save jobs and acquire and maintain critical equipment through the Staffing for Adequate Fire Emergency Response grants, the Assistance to Firefighters Grants, and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act-funded Fire Station Construction Grants.

She also toured the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Chicago Union Station to discuss best practices and the important role of the private sector in protecting critical infrastructure and transportation systems.

Additionally, Napolitano visited the Chicago Office of Emergency Management and Communications and met with public- and private-sector stakeholders, law-enforcement officials and first responders to discuss the Department’s commitment to protecting communities through programs such as the Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative.

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