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 Home > News & Policies > November 2001

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
November 8, 2001

Homeland Security - Every American Can Help

Today's Presidential Action

-    Americans are looking for ways to get involved in the war against terrorism on the home front.  The President announced two new initiatives today to give citizens new opportunities to support Homeland Security efforts, and to help every American better prepare to respond to terrorist attacks.

-    The President announced that the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) will support homeland security in the coming year in three major areas: public safety; public health; and disaster mitigation and preparedness.  CNCS proposes to mobilize more than 20,000 Senior Corps and AmeriCorps participants in FY 2002 to support these efforts.

-    President Bush also created the Presidential Task Force on Citizen Preparedness in the War Against Terrorism.  Within 40 days, the Task Force will make recommendations to help prepare Americans in their homes, neighborhoods, schools, workplaces, places of worship and public places from the potential consequences of terrorist attacks.  The Task Force will also recommend ways for Americans to support local officials, including  in police departments, fire departments and community health centers, who are often the first to respond to a terrorist attack.  The Task Force will be co-chaired by the President's Homeland Security and Domestic Policy advisers and will consist of the relevant Federal agency heads.

Background on New Service Options to Support Homeland Security

-    Supporting Public Safety: CNCS proposes to provide more than 10,000 additional Senior Corps and AmeriCorps participants to support police departments, fire departments, and other local agencies such as parks and recreation departments.  These participants would free up local personnel to meet their front line responsibilities by performing administrative tasks and other functions that can be performed by non-commissioned officers.

-    Supporting Public Healh:  CNCS proposes to provide more than 5,000 additional Senior Corps and AmeriCorps members to support public health agencies in outreach and information dissemination and administrative support.  Resources will be targeted at low-income communities.

-    Supporting Disaster Preparedness: CNCS proposes to provide more than 5,000 additional Senior Corps and AmeriCorps participants in disaster preparedness and mitigation.  AmeriCorps and Senior Corps volunteers have a long track record of working with FEMA and other relief agencies in helping communities to respond to disasters.