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Weekly Update: DHS Response to COVID-19

Release Date: 
June 8, 2020

WASHINGTON – The Department of Homeland Security remains vigilant against the COVID-19 virus and continues to lead the national response to mitigate the spread. As most States enter a new phase and start reopening their economy, DHS and its components continue to prove their commitment to ensure a safe, secure, and a prosperous Homeland for the American people. As part of that reopening, we are beginning to reopen our Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers and bringing back students to ensure they have the most up to date skills and knowledge to bring to their duties.

“Since the departure of students on March 20th, FLETC has dedicated itself to reopening and making sure that participating organizations have the ability to train officers and agents in a safe and secure environment. FLETC has an important national function to help train the next generation of federal law enforcement professionals,” said Director Thomas J. Walters. “The combined efforts following the restart of FLETC training will enable these dedicated professionals and the Department of Homeland Security to fulfill their critical mission.”

Below is a list of some of DHS’s efforts against COVID-19 last week:

Federal Law Enforcement Training Centers (FLETC)

Welcoming Back Future Law Enforcement. Safety is a priority as FLETC reopens and gets ready to bring back their students. On June 3rd, FLETC began a 90-day pilot program at all FLETC training delivery point. All students and staff will be tested regularly using a minimally invasive, saliva-based test. The test is designed to be self-administered and only requires the individual being tested to rub a test swab on the inside of each cheek. FLETC will monitor the testing process for students to ensure the tests are properly administered, labeled, and gathered for shipping to the lab.

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA)

Keeping Essential Workers Safe From COVID-19 and Hurricane. On June 1st, CISA began working with local authorities to extend courtesies to essential workers involved in communications infrastructure operations, maintenance and restoration, as the country continues to respond to and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as prepare for the start of hurricane season.

Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD)

Enhanced Screenings at Airports. CWMD contract personnel are continuing to support the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with enhanced screenings for travelers through 15 specially designated airports. As of June 6th, CWMD has processed more than 328,436 travelers for enhanced screening, including 1,530 who were referred to CDC for further medical evaluation.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

FEMA Continues Deliveries of Needed Medical Supplies. As of June 7th, FEMA, HHS, and the private sector combined have coordinated the delivery of or are currently shipping: 94.7 million N95 respirators, 149.2 million surgical masks, 13.9 million face shields, 38.6 million surgical gowns and over 1 billion gloves.

FEMA Assists in Administration’s COVID-19 Testing Strategy. To support the Administration’s Testing Blueprint, FEMA is working to source and procure testing material – specifically, testing swabs and transport media. As of June 7th, FEMA has procured and delivered 19.8 million swabs and 15 million units of media. The FEMA-sourced material will be provided to states, territories, and tribes for a limited duration to help increase testing capacity in support of their individualized plans.

Transportation Security Administration (TSA)

Keeping Americans Safe While Ensuring Continuity of U.S. Travel and Commerce. TSA continues to follow CDC guidance to protect Americans, its workers and the nation’s transportation system, in support of air travel and all other modes of transportation. Between May 31st and June 6th, TSA screened more than 2,442,959 passengers, who have all reached their destinations safely.

Ready to Ensure Safety During the Summer Travel Period . Between May 31st and June 6th, TSA continued to leverage its social media channels to communicate to airline travelers the new normal they can expect to see at airport screening checkpoints nationwide. In an effort to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, travelers should expect to see changes at airport screening checkpoints across the country including TSA officers wearing facial protection and social distancing while in the screening lines.

United States Coast Guard (USCG)

Monitoring Vessels that Pose a Risk to Public Health. The Coast Guard continues to monitor the presence of multiple ships anchored in U.S. territorial waters to ensure they observe the 14-day minimum wait time required by Presidents Trump’s EO before docking at a U.S. port to help reduce the spread of foreign originating COVID-19. As of June 6th, the Coast Guard is tracking more than 67 cruise ships anchored, moored, or underway in U.S. waters, carrying approximately 32,325 crew members from various countries.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)

Keeping the Public Safe from COVID-19-related Fraud. ICE’s Operation Stolen Promise (OSP) targets fraudulent activity stemming from the pandemic. The initiative combines ICE’s Homeland Security Investigation’s (HSI) expertise in global trade investigations, financial fraud, and cyber investigations with robust private and public partnerships to disrupt and dismantle this criminal activity and strengthen global supply-chain security. As of May 29th, as part of OSP, the agency has made 18 criminal arrests, analyzed 36,393 COVID-19-related domains, seized more than $4,022,371.07 million in illicit proceeds, disrupted 36 instances of illicit activity, sent 831 leads to domestic and international field offices, executed 38 search warrants and made 621 COVID-19-related seizures to include prohibited test kits and pharmaceuticals, counterfeit masks and more.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

Seizing Counterfeit Goods to Keep The Country Safe. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) continues to identify and seize a large number of counterfeit, unapproved or otherwise substandard COVID-19 products that threaten the health and safety of American consumers. As of June 1, CBP had seized more than: 107,300 FDA-prohibited COVID-19 test kits in 301 incidents; 750,000 counterfeit face masks in 86 incidents; 2,500 EPA-prohibited anti-virus lanyards in 89 incidents; and 11,000 FDA-prohibited chloroquine tablets in 91 incidents.

Getting American Citizens Home Safe. As of June 4th, CBP had referred 323,683 travelers at the 15 funneling airports to DHS CWMD for enhanced health screening. Also, in coordination with the State Department, CBP repatriated 101,403 U.S. citizens on 1,112 flights from 139 countries. An additional 94 repatriation flights are scheduled to occur.

United States Secret Service (USSS)

Informing the American Public Of COVID Related Scams. On June 5th the USSS begin airing a public service announcement regarding the possibility of counterfeit U.S. Treasury checks associated with the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act disbursements. Since April, the USSS has been working with the U.S. Treasury to launch a campaign to bring awareness to citizens, retailers, and financial institutions on how to protect themselves from scams associated with U.S. Treasury checks funded by the CARES Act.

Additional Information

 

Last Published Date: June 18, 2020
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