The Department of Homeland Security has introduced a new public awareness campaign, aimed at educating U.S. residents on the importance of reporting suspicious activity to state and local law enforcement authorities. The campaign, “If You See Something, Say Something”, encourages citizens to work together to build a strong foundation for increased security.

Remaining vigilant and playing an active role in keeping employees, animals and facilities safe is an ongoing objective for the nation’s pork producers, according to the National Pork Board. “One of the most important things producers can do is to pay attention to their surroundings,” says Cindy Cunningham, NPB assistant vice president, communications. “That includes, traffic on the road near your farms, paying attention to who is calling and asking questions about your farm and thoroughly checking out the background of potential new employees.”

If something seems or feels out-of-the-ordinary, or not-quite-right, producers should follow their instinct and check it out, according to Cunningham. “An emergency action plan is a vital tool that plays an important role in security,” she says. Pork producers are encouraged to have such a plan on their farms and to see that it is available to all workers. If producers need help in developing an emergency plan, they can access a tool to help create one.

This tool will walk you through the process of building a customized emergency action plan. Complete the information in each field provided to create a customized plan for your operation. When you have completed your plan, you will be able to print hard copies and to save an electronic copy of it as well. 

According to NPB, a well-documented emergency action plan can be a valuable tool to increase preparedness for an emergency on your operation.  A thorough analysis and description of your individual operation and sites, careful planning for each possible emergency scenario, and ongoing maintenance and training before an emergency are all critical steps in a emergency action plan. Read more about your farm’s security.

Thorough training for each employee or person involved with your operation is an essential part of emergency planning and should be implemented as soon as you have completed your customized plan.  To comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations, an employer must have a printed copy of an emergency action plan readily accessible to all employees.  If 10 employees or less are employed, the emergency plan can be reviewed orally.

DHS radio and television public service announcements present scenarios involving suspicious activity and educate viewers on how to notify authorities regarding potential threats.

The "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign is being launched in conjunction with the rollout of the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Reporting Initiative (NSI)  The NSI is an administration-wide effort to develop and implement common processes and policies for sharing information about suspicious activities.

Recent partnerships with the new DHS campaign include The City of Los Angeles, Walmart, the American Hotel & Lodging Association, Amtrak, and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority. In addition, more than 9,000 federal buildings, the general aviation industry, and state and local centers across the country also participate in the campaign. The “If You See Something, Say Something” public awareness video is available here.

Source: DHS,NPB