DHS Selects Accreditation Board to Support Preparedness Certification Program

The Department of Homeland Security announced today that it has signed an agreement with the ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) to establish and oversee the development and implementation of the accreditation and certification requirements for the Voluntary Private Sector Preparedness Accreditation and Certification Program.

This program is directed by Public Law 110-53, Implementing the Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007, requiring the department to establish a common set of criteria for private-sector preparedness in disaster management, emergency management and business continuity.

Under Title IX of the Act, the department is charged with a number of core tasks to establish the voluntary program, to include the designation of an organization to act as an accrediting body. In this role, ANAB will be responsible for overseeing the certification process, managing the accreditation, and accrediting qualified third parties to carry out certifications of private sector entities. ANAB was selected based on its experience and expertise in managing and implementing accreditation programs.

As required by the Act, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff previously designated an officer within the department to be responsible for the accreditation and certification program. R. David Paulison, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, serves as the designated officer and will chair an internal Private Sector Preparedness Council comprised of department leadership from the Science & Technology Directorate, Private Sector Office and the Office of Infrastructure Protection.

The Private Sector Preparedness Council will focus on the remaining requirements of the Act. This includes selecting program standards, defining and promoting the business case for private sector entities to work toward voluntary certification, overseeing the program's progress, and providing regular updates to Congress.

"The success of this voluntary program will only come from a true public-private partnership to ensure that every step in the process meets the needs of private sector organizations," Paulison said. "By providing common criteria for business preparedness, we will help strengthen our nation's economic resilience for all hazards."

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