Public Safety, Advanced Security & Interoperability Updates from the desk of Kevin Wennekes, CATA's VP of Research
February 28, 2012

Some time sensitive and potentially relevant notes of interest for you.

Go immediately to:

Emergency Responder Buyers Group Webinar – Wednesday, Feb 29 @ 1 pm EST
5th Annual First Responder Vendor Outreach Forum – Ottawa, October 16 & 17
700 MHz Broadband Network for Public Safety – so close you can almost taste it!
Other Notes of Interest
Profile of the Month

Emergency Responder Buyers Group Webinar – Wednesday, Feb 29 @ 1 pm EST

There is still some limited availability to this month’s Public Safety Perspectives webinar, featuring Dan Elliot, Manager Radio & Wireless Telecom, for the Greater Toronto Airport Authority, who will be discussing the developments around an Emergency Responder Buyer’s Group and details of the first group procurement RFP opportunity that will seek to collectively combine purchases of participating agencies for End User devices over the next 3 years.

This one-hour webinar will provide for a detailed Q&A segment and ask for interested volunteers to join the advisory board.

A must-attend for First Responders looking to reduce their procurement costs through economy of scale group purchases, and for vendors of any product seeking to grow their market share among this community!

Registration details, including information on how to access last month’s webinar featuring Steve palmer of the CPRC, can be found here:

5th Annual First Responder Vendor Outreach Forum – Ottawa, October 16 & 17

The highly successful VOF series is in pre-launch stage and an incredible line-up of speakers have already been confirmed to participate. The official web portal will be launched next week and our partners at the CPRC, CITIG and local partner Division Chief Micheal Sullivan of Ottawa Fire are hard at work confirming speakers and “Dragon Den” representatives.

Companies seeking to obtain one of the few Executive Boardroom opportunities – allowing you an exclusive 25-minute presentation (minimum) to approximately 30 emergency responder procurement stakeholders – should contact me right away to secure one. With only 13 such sessions available, the Boardrooms and event sell out every year with repeat sponsorships being the majority buyers. It is described as being a truly unique format offering sponsors a clear return on their investment. Contact me right away to secure one and thereby also obtain the greatest branding exposure through your inclusion in the portal’s launch.

For those unfamiliar with the Forum series, please review last year’s Vancouver Portal for context:

Note that the Presentations from the Vancouver session are also available for download:

Are you a police, fire, EMS or other public safety organization representative who influences the technology procurement process? Interested in becoming one of our powerful Dragons and learning about some of today’s most innovative technologies in your field? If so, please contact Steve Palmer, Lance Valcour, or Micheal Sullivan for more information. I’d also ask any past Dragon’s to please share your own boardroom experience with a colleague you feel should be involved in the Ottawa Forum.

700 MHz Broadband Network for Public Safety – so close you can almost taste it!

The US Bill H.R.3630 that gives D block to Public Safety, which was approved by the both the House and Senate, has now been signed by the President, therefore becoming law.

For those in the know, a lot of activity has been taking place in Canada on acquiring similar spectrum for pubic safety’s use here in Canada, and with the industry Canada auction looming, it’s hoped that Canada will follow a similar path. Find out all you need to know on this subject here:

CATA has also been working closely behind the scenes with key stakeholders in the development of a national organization to lead the acquisition and management of this spectrum. A recent 4-day invitation-only workshop resulted in some incredible vision and direction with a full public consultation on the outcomes to take place in the very near future.

For those who did not attend the most recent CACP workshop, you missed a sneak peak of the outcomes of the above initiative, along with a great deal of other tremendous insights. An excellent event and congratulations to the organizers for a fantastic amount of discussion and learning.

Also of note, a US report detailing the substantial economic value of nearly doubling the amount of spectrum available for wireless broadband over ten years and deploying a nationwide interoperable wireless network for public safety is also available: The Economic Benefits of New Spectrum for Wireless Broadband

Other Notes of Interest

  • The First Responder Technology Roadmap will be officially launched in April. I've attended a pre-planning session with CPRC, NRC, CITIG and some Soldier System Roadmap stakeholders where we have ratified the critical path and reviewed requests for Steering Committee participation. I will be following up with all parties who identified having an interest in this initiative in the near future. Contact me if you want to learn more.
  • Did you know we have a China office? Do you know that we provide consulting services for Canadian companies. Skywave does and has recently joined CATA to take advantage of our market research capabilities in the region. I’ll be meeting with the company executives later this week to discuss their strengthening of our public safety mandate through their involvement here as well.
  • Security companies take note: our next TSX capital investment seminar is taking place April 10 in Ottawa with our previous event securing participating companies over $7 million in venture funding! To apply to be one of the five companies to participate in Ottawa, please see this link for information:
  • New Study - Information Flow Among Municipal IT Directors/CIOs: How can information sharing among municipal IT Directors/CIOs help improve ICT impacts on the performance of your organization? Do Government CIOs need different support for advice networking than CIOs in for-profit firms? These are the questions we seek to better understand in a research collaboration between CATAAlliance and McMaster University. We are asking our member municipal IT Directors/CIOs to participate in the study by completing the web survey available at:
  • CATA First Responder & Public Safety Individual Supporter category: thanks to all of you who expressed interest in joining us at our special $95 annual fee. This category is reserved exclusively for recognized first responder or public safety organization representatives who wish to voluntarily support us in our related initiatives and obtain full membership level benefits. This does not mean that we are putting any roadblocks in place to our otherwise free access for recognized responders, but simply a means of satisfying a number of requests to create such a platform. We will publish the names of all of our supporters soon, as well as create special events and priority consideration status for those who do support us in this program.

Profile of the Month

My selection of Michael Doucet, CIO of the RCMP as my profile of the month comes as an easy decision. Micheal has been a very strong supporter of our work among the First Responder community, having participated in our Halifax Vendor Outreach Forum and promising to participate again in this year’s Ottawa Forum as one of our valued Dragons and speakers. He will also be our featured speaker at next month’s Public Safety Perspectives webinar. He was also very willing to join me during last year’s First Responder mission to China but critical developments here at home prevented him from doing so. Maybe this year! Please check out his bio and join us at our many related public safety events for your chance to speak with or meet him in person.

As always, thanks for your continued readership!