Response to terrorism
The response to terrorism in my city is based on the specific chain-of-command structure which is critical for effective policies. First of all, one should speak about the Incident Commander whose duty is to develop strategies for responding to possible threats. Additionally, one can speak about the Command Staff that includes Safety Officer and Public information officer.
The third layer of this structure is represented by the General Staff which is composed of people who are responsible for specific activities such as logistics and healthcare. Additionally, one can speak about Area Command and Local Emergency Operations Center (Homeland Security, 2008a, p. 50).
At this stage, one of the tasks is to determine whether a particular incident can be viewed as a terrorist attack. Provided that terrorists’ participation has been confirmed, the task of the Incident Commander, Command Staff, and General Staff is to make sure that they cannot pose a threat to the lives of people.
For example, they should pay attention the protection of hospitals, railway stations, schools, and other places. So, their task is to make the city less vulnerable. Moreover, under such circumstances, they can ask for the assistance of state and federal law enforcement agencies and other governmental organizations. These are the main details that can be identified.
NFR and NIMS
National Response Framework (NRF) and National Incident Management System (NIMS) are the documents that specify the response strategies to the threat of terrorism. This type of risk is mentioned in various sections of these guidelines. For example, these documents identify specific organizations that are responsible for responding to such incidents. In NRF, there is a section describing the work of agencies that should respond to various emergencies, including terrorism (Homeland Security, 2008a).
Among them, one can distinguish Joint Terrorism Task Force that can function at local and regional levels (Homeland Security, 2008a). In turn, NIMS contains several sections describing the specific challenges associated with different types of terrorism. In particular, one can mention chemical and biological attacks.
These are some of the aspects that should not be overlooked. On the whole, these documents can be viewed as the guidelines that local and state authorities should take. They lay the basis for the development of response strategies. Moreover, these documents are helpful for promoting cooperation between different agencies. On the whole, these documents are critical for the effective work of governmental and non-governmental organizations at the time of emergency.
Various types of terrorism
In NIMS, terrorism is described as the action which poses a threat to human life as well as infrastructure of the country. In many cases, its effects can be catastrophic. Moreover, one of its goals is to intimidate the population of the country or influence governmental policies (Homeland Security, 2008b, p. 148).
Certainly, there are other crimes which can be equally dangerous, but they cannot be viewed as terrorist attacks. It is also mentioned that the acts of radiological, chemical, biological, and nuclear terrorism are particularly challenging because they are not site-specific (Homeland Security, 2008b, p. 46).
In other words, they can affect many regions at the same time. Under such circumstances, it is rather difficult to identify each of the possible threats. Therefore, such incidents usually prompt governmental organizations to coordinate their actions. In turn, according to NFR guidelines, such emergencies can be resolved with the help of state and federal agencies (Homeland Security, 2008a).
Apart from that, this document identifies various scenarios that local and state authorities should be ready for. For instance, one can mention that biological attacks involving anthrax. Overall, these documents illustrate the complexity of the threats that governmental organizations should address. These are the main issues that can be distinguished.
Biological terrorism response plan
Texas Department of Public Safety (2004) has the document which specifies the actions that should be taken by governmental organizations in case of a terrorist attack that involves biological weapons which can produce disastrous effects. This plan is aimed at identifying the duties and responsibilities of various governmental officials. Moreover, it specifies the actions that should be taken at local, regional and state levels in this case.
Secondly, this plan contains the guidelines which should be used for the assessment of risks. Additionally, much attention is paid to the work of healthcare organizations (Texas Department of Public Safety, 2004, p. 20). Apart from that, this plan presents a list of primary and support agencies that will be involved in the response to a hypothetical attack (Texas Department of Public Safety, 2004).
For example, one can speak about Texas Commission of Environmental Quality. Furthermore, the authors of this document lay stress on the need for training because it is critical for the effective work of law enforcement agencies and healthcare organizations. This document can be used as the step-by-step instructions that various officials should follow. These are the main details that should not be disregarded.
Homeland Security. (2008a). National Response Framework. Retrieved from https://www.fema.gov/pdf/emergency/nrf/nrf-core.pdf
Homeland Security. (2008b). National Incident Management System. Retrieved from https://www.fema.gov/pdf/emergency/nims/NIMS_core.pdf
Texas Department of Public Safety. (2004). Biological Terrorism Response Plan. Retrieved from http://www.dps.texas.gov/index.htm