Public Safety & Advanced Security Update: Kevin Wennekes, VP of Research Outlines Activities for Comment, Guidance and Engagement for 2011
December 24, 2010

This will be my final update for 2010 – and a critical one given some important advocacy efforts that are taking place on the first responder and public safety and security fronts.

First off, allow me offer a strong note of congratulations to Steve Palmer at the Canadian Police Research Centre and Lance Valcour at the Canadian Interoperability Technology Interest group for yet another very successful national workshop earlier this month in Victoria. For those who could not attend this year, be sure to make next year’s workshops planned for December 2011 in Ottawa a priority.  A recap of the Victoria workshops can be found at the CITIG site ( and Lance would be pleased to discuss why you should participate next year in Ottawa: email him at for more info.

“Broadband for Public Safety” Advocacy Campaign

CATA is proudly and actively supporting Canada’s First Responder and Public Safety and Security communities in their recently-launched advocacy campaign relating to the need for the development of a unified, state-of-the art mission critical voice and broadband multimedia and services network. Industry Canada is engaging consultations on the 700 MHz broadband allocations (the result of spectrum availability due to the transition from analog television to digital) that will ultimately affect public safety agencies' ability to deploy mission critical data well into the future.

For more information on this critical issue, please review these following links and more importantly, get involved through actively participating and helping create the needed swell in these early days of this grassroots campaign. 

           + – the official site hosted by CITIG representing the Police, Fire, and EMS advocacy positions relating to this mission-critical initiative.

           +  CATA’s own announcement relating to the launch of its Broadband for Public Safety campaign

          + A January 13th webinar with Terry Matthews and members of CATA’s Leadership Council on this campaign

          +  Provision of a written submission to IC by the deadline of Feb 28, 2011

I’d encourage you all to join CATA’s LinkedIn Group dedicated to this campaign in order to be kept up-to-date on planned activities including a national survey, webinars featuring the tri-service leaders, public consultations, and recruitment drives. The success of our work in addressing these issues and concerns will materially affect the growth and success of the sector and the safety of all Canadians. We are proceeding with urgency on this important mission.

Contribute today!

CATA is a non-profit organization that receives no government funding so that we can be free to advocate and we need your support! The costs for legal fees, public consultations, and man hours for this campaign are projected to exceed $100K. We have set up a special, dedicated war chest fund to support the ongoing work that is required. We will gladly accept individual contributions of any amount, and have created special membership rates for companies to join us in support of this campaign. We also require those willing to volunteer time and knowledge. Contact me by reply to this email or by calling 613.769.8614 to offer up your support for this campaign.

4th Annual First Responder Vendor Outreach Forum – Vancouver, October 18-19 at the Pan Pacific

You’re hearing it here first! The official dates and location are now confirmed for our fourth annual First Responder VOF. Our communication materials are all currently under development and will be available very early in the New Year. In the meantime, please review our 2010 Atlantic Canada site for an idea of what lay in store for Vancouver.

We expect another sell-out this year and in fact, almost half of the “Dragon Den” boardroom opportunities are already spoken for by returning sponsors.  We are currently working with local First Responders to identify regional speakers and Boardroom ‘investors’. I’d ask any First Responders who have participated in the Forum in the past to kindly encourage their colleagues in BC to participate as well.

First Responder Technology Roadmap – Will Launch in 2011

I enjoyed a very productive meeting with my colleagues at Industry Canada’s Technology Roadmap Secretariat and the Canadian Police Research Centre yesterday. As a result, I’ll be issuing a major announcement next month regarding the official launch of the Roadmap, which will outline a very clear demonstration of support offered by our partners (which include long-time corporate supporters Motorola and LightSquared) and speak to the plans for a Spring launch. 

A very busy 2011 for First Responder and Public Safety and Security Initiatives.

CATA will be conducting a number of First Responder related studies and events next year. We will be looking for steering committee members, thought leaders, and other contributors to support in their delivery – from both the First Responder and business communities. A two-page briefing note is available upon request to CATA,  let me know how you would like to participate.

Have a very wonderful Christmas, and all the best to each of you in 2011!

Kevin Wennekes, VP, Research,  CATAAlliance