P.O.Box 225081, San Francisco, CA 94122

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San Francisco Homeland Security Law Attorney

United States homeland security law consultant

Bay Area Lawyer Assisting With Legal Issues Related to Terrorism, Disasters, and Pandemics

Since 9/11/2001, to protect the safety and security of its people, the United States of America has drafted multiple laws to create a legal, administrative, and agency framework. This area is known as Homeland Security Law. These statutes have been enacted to prevent, mitigate, respond to, and recover from man-made or natural disasters, catastrophic accidents, or terrorist attacks. When addressing these types of issues, businesses will want to make sure they understand how these laws affect them and what they can do to protect the safety of the American public. This has become especially significant during the COVID-19 pandemic, since homeland security law also addresses biodefense, disaster preparedness, and other issues that have affected people and businesses during this national crisis.

Attorney Martin Alperen is the top homeland security law consultant in the United States. He is the author of the widely-used reference book on homeland security law, "Foundations of Homeland Security: Law and Policy, Second Edition," which was published in 2017. He received a Master of Arts in Security Studies (Homeland Security and Defense) from the Naval Postgraduate School's Center for Homeland Defense and Security. With his understanding of legal issues related to homeland security, natural disasters, pandemics, and more, he can provide consulting services to ensure that businesses are in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations and are doing what is necessary to keep Americans safe.

Homeland Security Issues Affecting Businesses

Whether they are in the midst of an emergency situation or making preparations for the future, business owners will want to make sure they are doing everything they should to keep people safe and their businesses alive. In addition to determining which laws apply to them and how they can remain in compliance, they will also want to question whether there is anything else they should be doing to protect public safety.

Mr. Alperen can help businesses address a wide variety of issues related to homeland security law, including:

  • Emergency management and disaster preparedness - Businesses will need to be prepared to respond correctly before, during, and after local, statewide, or national disasters and other emergency situations. They will need to make decisions, solve problems, and coordinate resources as they work to prepare for and mitigate the effects of emergencies and recover following disasters. Businesses will also need to understand how to coordinate with agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
  • Cybersecurity - Businesses will want to make sure they are following the proper procedures to protect digital information from being accessed or stolen. They will also need to take steps to prevent the disruption or destruction of online services, including the prevention of cyber attacks or threats that could disrupt or threaten services that are essential to the community.
  • Critical infrastructure protection - CIP is not just for the government. Your business uses critical infrastructure every minute. Businesses can work to make the United States stronger and more resilient by making plans to protect and maintain different areas of the nation's infrastructure, including energy and electricity, water and wastewater systems, roads and transportation systems, food and agriculture, communications and information technology, healthcare and emergency services, manufacturing, commercial facilities, financial services, and government facilities. This is your critical infrastructure.
  • Transportation security - Businesses can help ensure that the roads and transportation systems in the United States are safe and secure while also working to make sure the global supply chain continues to function smoothly.
  • Agricultural and food security - Businesses should ensure they are following regulations that affect the safety of food products that are grown, raised, harvested, manufactured, transported, and sold throughout the United States.
  • Resiliency - The National Security Strategy that was adopted by the United States in 2017 states that the country should be able to withstand disasters and emergencies and recover quickly from these situations. Businesses can help follow this strategy by being prepared to adapt to changing conditions and withstand disruptions while having plans to make a quick recovery from disasters that affect their communities.
  • Real ID - Businesses will need to be in compliance with security standards for identification documents related to domestic or international travel or federal facilities.

Pandemic Law and COVID-19

In 2018, the Trump Administration created a National Biodefense Strategy law that was meant to strengthen our country's defenses against biological threats. Do not be confused by the title. Bioterrorism causes pandemics. It could as easily have been called the 2018 Pandemic Strategy. In this strategy, the President stated, "Biological threats are among the most serious threats facing the United States and the international community. Outbreaks of disease can cause catastrophic harm to the United States. They can cause death, sicken, and disable on a massive scale, and they can also inflict psychological trauma and economic and social disruption. Natural or accidental outbreaks, as well as deliberate attacks, can originate in one country and spread to many others, with potentially far-reaching international consequences."

The law outlined plans for preparedness for pandemics, including addressing matters related to personal protective equipment (PPE), testing, stockpiles of medical equipment, and the cascading effects of a biological threat. It established a Biodefense Steering Committee, which was supposed to establish a Biodefense Coordination Team to implement these plans and ensure that the United States could respond correctly to emergency situations involving biological threats. The law replaced and superseded some existing homeland security directives while also including plans to implement some prior directives. With this strategy, the Trump Administration took complete control of the country's preparedness and response to pandemics.

Unfortunately, President Trump did not follow the procedures outlined in the National Biodefense Strategy when the time came to deal with the spread of COVID-19 in the United States and throughout the world. A report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that was released in March of 2020 stated that planning for the staffing, responsibilities, and charter of the Biodefense Coordination Team had not been finalized, and the details regarding specific roles and responsibilities for directing and enforcing budget decisions lacked detail and specificity.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States has encountered problems with every subject discussed in President Trump's National Biodefense Strategy. The Strategy could, unfortunately, be called a COVID-19 Playbook because every issue we suffered had been addressed in the Strategy. The possibility of a pandemic on this scale has been known and foreseeable since 2002. Even though the strategy was meant to be a coordinated effort to protect the country from biological threats, President Trump did not follow the law his own administration had created. Because of this failure, it is left to the American people to speculate about how many lives would have been saved if the pandemic had been acknowledged six weeks earlier or three months earlier, if the use of PPE and testing had been implemented more effectively, if the Defense Production Act had been invoked earlier, or if the known cascading effects of the pandemic had been addressed as the law required.

Contact Our Bay Area Homeland Security and Pandemic Law Attorney

If you have questions about legal issues related to the national security of the United States, pandemic or disaster preparedness and response, or regulatory compliance related to homeland security, Attorney Marten Alperin can assist you. To speak to one of the top HLS law consultants in the nation, contact our office at 415-534-1200.

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