American Kennel Club (AKC) Commends Congress on this Important National Security Action
WASHINGTON, D.C. / ACCESSWIRE / October 11, 2018 /New legislation signed into law last week will help to end the nation's shortage of explosives-detecting dogs. The law, part of a five-year funding bill for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), includes new rules for how the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), one of the largest users of detection dogs, gets its animals.
The United States doesn't have enough of these detection dogs, which have been in high demand since the September 11 attacks. Despite technological advances in almost every facet of security, when it comes to explosives detection, dogs remain the most accurate, cost-effective, and reliable way of locating explosives. As a result, law enforcement agencies across the world are in heated competition to acquire the most suitable dogs for these tasks.
Due to the lack of domestic supply, the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security currently source up to 90 percent of their dogs from overseas.
The FAA bill addresses this issue by requiring the TSA to establish a public-private working group bringing together top experts in animal science, husbandry, training and detection operations to develop non-governmental breeding networks for explosives detection dogs; essentially finding ways to encourage more detection-dog training in the U.S. The working group will also establish a set of clear medical, behavioral and training standards for breeders.
The American Kennel Club commends Congress for taking bipartisan, commonsense steps to protect our public spaces, and thanks the President for signing this important legislation into law.
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) first introduced this bill in the House as the Domestic Explosives Detection Canine Capacity Building Act. When he filed the bill, Congressman Rogers stated:
"My bill [will] increase the number of working dogs bred and trained in America versus purchasing the majority of our working dogs from Europe. I support American dogs protecting Americans and I support the private sector being a full partner in our security.
The canines used in the transportation sector - from train stations to airports - are not only the most cost-effective, but also the most efficient option to detect explosives. They are more proficient than any machine on the market.
I have always been and will continue to be an advocate for the increased use of canines to protect our homeland."
The Senate Commerce Committee, led by Chairman John Thune (R-S.D.), Ranking Member Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Roy Blunt (R-Mo.,) and Ranking Member Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), incorporated these requirements into the FAA re-authorization bill.
The FAA bill helps bring high quality U.S. dog breeders into the government's process for procuring working dogs, as well as making that process more open and transparent. Now having been signed into law, it will bring with it a major improvement in airport security.
Photos courtesy of the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority Police Department
To arrange an interview with an AKC official to discuss the effect of this new law, contact:
SOURCE: American Kennel Club (AKC)
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