CATA’s Public Safety Advisory Board works to advance the development of Canada’s Public Safety Broadband Network
June 6, 2014

CATAAlliance

Shawn Tupper
ADM, Emergency Management and Programs Branch Shawn Tupper
Public Safety Canada
Assistant Deputy Minister's Office
269 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0P8

RE: Public Safety Broadband Network

Mr. Tupper, 

I am writing you today to request a meeting to discuss the importance of the plans around the development of Canada’s Public Safety Broadband Network, and our hopes for an open public Forum this Fall which would include the participation of senior Public Safety Canada leaders. 

The Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance (CATAAlliance), Canada’s largest, non-profit technology association, has been a long-time advocate and trusted industry advisor with respect to helping advance this critical national undertaking. In brief, CATA was: 

·         contacted by Public Safety Canada to help facilitate the seminal 4-day workshop in 2012 that resulted in the development of what is commonly known as the “Montreal Model” for this network. http://www.cata.ca/700mghz-workshop/

·         a key partner in delivering a pivotal 3-day national summit in May of that year which shared the results of the Montreal Model and sought key stakeholder feedback towards validating the concepts presented therein. http://www.cata.ca/PSBNforum/

·         instrumental in helping to spearhead, recruit, and underwrite the costs for the Technology Advisory Group which over the course of a year helped define the infrastructure and software/application needs for a national network.

·         engaged to conduct stakeholder surveys, issues briefings, whitepapers, and official submissions to a number of Industry Canada consultations – the results of which are all housed in our extensive online research repository: http://www.cataalliance.ca/ecommerce/

While it was very welcome news to learn last year of the awarding of 10 MHz of the 700 MHz broadband spectrum dedicated for the establishment of this national network, there has regrettably been almost no further, noticeable public advancement of this critical file. The emergency responder community still awaits a final decision on the awarding of another 10 MHz of the D block spectrum (to match that of our U.S. responder allies).  Similarly, the issues of governance and funding of the needed national entity required to provide stewardship, standards, and ownership of the spectrum licence are pending resolution.

CATA and our Canadian industry members are excited by the potential innovation opportunities that Public Safety Broadband Spectrum will bring to Canada and the Public Safety Community.

 The development of the public safety broadband network is of paramount importance not only to the safety and security of every Canadian citizen, but presents an economic opportunity unlike any other in Canada’s history. The development of such a national network would act as a springboard, propelling Canadian innovation in public safety ICTs to new heights, drive significant investments into new R&D, create new wealth and greater numbers of new knowledge-economy jobs, and position Canadian capacity and policies at the forefront of a challenge that will ultimately be facing every nation and in which our Country would be well-positioned to assume a leadership role in addressing.

With the guidance of CATA’s Public Safety Advisory Board – the members of which are identified below – the Board Chair, Mr. Steve Palmer, and I, are kindly requesting to meet with you to discuss the current status of this file and our plans to hold a public consultation this Fall in which we can again offer Public Safety Canada on opportunity to promote its leadership and dedication to this mission critical public safety initiative.

Mr. Tupper, it would be tremendously appreciated to be able to meet with you at your earliest convenience to discuss these issues and opportunities.

Thank you for your timely consideration of our request.

Sincerely, 

Kevin Wennekes

Vice President, CATAAlliance
(613) 769-8614
kwennekes@cata.ca

 

On behalf of CATA’s Public Safety Advisory Board, namely:

Cal Corley, (Ret’d) Assistant Commissioner Director General, Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Alourdes Sully, Chair, Utilities Safety Advisory Council of Canada
Christine Robson, IT Manager, Durham Regional Police
Dale McFee, Deputy Minister of Corrections and Policing, Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice
Dan Elliott, Manager, Communication Systems, IOCC, Greater Toronto Airports Authority
David Farnes, Executive In Residence – Mobile Health, CATA
Eric Torunski, Executive Director, Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest Group
Ernest MacGillivray, Alignment Champion, Public Safety, Province of New Brunswick
Francois Bureau, Director Consulting Services, CGI
Gary Wilson, Regional Sales Director, Cassidean
Jim Peter Safar, President, Inter-Op Canada
John-Paul Cody-Cox, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs
Jordan Parsons, Director, Nterop
Kelly Nash, Executive Director, Paramedic Chiefs of Canada
Michael Martin, Federal Lead & Ottawa GM, Motorola Solutions
Mike Doucet, Executive Director, Security Intelligence Review Committee
Norm Hrapchak, Director, HARRIS
Pierre Poirier, Deputy Chief, Ottawa Paramedic Service
Prithu Prakash, Chief Architect, General Dynamics
Steve Palmer, Executive Director, Collaborative Centre for Justice and Safety, University of Regina
Tim Trytten, AEA/GIS Coordinator, Alberta Emergency Management Agency