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Napolitano Announces Steps to Boost Southwest Border Efforts

borderWorking with federal, state, local, tribal and Mexican partners, the Department of Homeland Security has over the past year and a half made significant progress in cracking down on border-related crime and smuggling while facilitating legitimate travel and commerce, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said.

“We are committed to further bolstering our cooperation with our state, local and tribal law enforcement partners as we continue to implement strong, smart and effective enforcement strategies along our borders and throughout the nation,” she said.

Delivering remarks about the department’s work on keeping communities safe from threats of border-related violence and crime, Napolitano announced a series of new steps to support law-enforcement efforts throughout the country, starting with a new partnership between DHS and the Major Cities Chiefs Association to create a “Southwest Border Law Enforcement Compact.” The project will allow non-border states and local law-enforcement agencies to detail officers to state and local law-enforcement agencies along the Southwest border.

Additional measures announced include new partnerships with state and local law enforcement; expanded information-sharing capabilities among law-enforcement partners; enhanced technology and targeting to crack down on smuggling; additional tools to enforce U.S. immigration laws while prioritizing the arrest and removal of criminal aliens; and increased cooperation with Mexico.

The secretary also highlighted President Barack Obama’s recent request for $500 million to strengthen law-enforcement efforts at the Southwest border, and his decision to deploy an additional 1,200 National Guard troops to assist the ongoing efforts to secure the border and combat drug cartels.

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