7. Outreach

1. Policy Development 2. Policy Implementation 3. Operations
4. Compliance
5. Oversight 6. Redress
7. Outreach 8. Coordination 9. SME
  10. Training  

Community Outreach

Community outreach should be a thoughtful, intentional process used to reinforce privacy protections and to promote public confidence in the fusion center (2pp | 505kb | PDF) and your justice partners and in the safety and integrity of the information contained in your systems.

As part of the DHS/DOJ Fusion Process Technical Assistance Program and Services (2pp | 2.7mb | PDF), a Communications and Outreach Guidebook: Considerations for State and Urban Area Fusion Centers was developed that provides guidance in developing and implementing a communications plan.

For additional background, the PM-ISE's Building Blocks, Communication and Partnerships page provides additional resources to assist fusion centers in developing partnerships with external stakeholders. Fusion center best practices and spotlights on communications and outreach available through LLIS provides examples that other fusion centers can use in the development of their outreach plans.

Building Communities of Trust

Another initiative, Building Communities of Trust, (2pp | 1.8mb | PDF) focuses on developing relationships of trust among law enforcement, fusion centers, and the communities they serve, particularly immigrant and minority communities. Trust, transparency, and the protection of privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties are fundamental to effective crime control, and these principles must serve as the foundation for information and intelligence sharing efforts intended to support crime prevention and terrorism prevention activities. Below are two documents that your fusion center can use to develop a communications and outreach plan and provide critical training to fusion center personnel.

  • Guidance for Building Communities of Trust (60pp | 1mb | PDF) provides advice and recommendations on how to initiate and sustain trusting relationships that support meaningful sharing of information, responsiveness to community concerns and priorities, and the reporting of suspicious activities that appropriately distinguish between innocent cultural behaviors and behavior that may legitimately reflect criminal enterprise or terrorism precursor activities.
  • BCOT's Guidance for Community Leaders helps law enforcement empower local partners to help keep communities safe from threats of crime and terrorism.

DHS is also working with a broad range of partners, including state and major urban area fusion centers, on an initiative on countering violent extremism (2pp | 278kb | PDF) and protecting local communities from violent crime.

Outreach to the Law Enforcement and other Stakeholder Community

In addition to conducting outreach to the public, your fusion center may need to conduct outreach to other state, local, and tribal entities that can further assist in fulfilling your mission. For example, Fire Services (22pp | 2.3mb | PDF), Public Health (30pp | 1.7mb | PDF), Emergency Management Services (86pp | 4.5mb | PDF), Tribal Nations (2pp | 2mb | PDF), Private Sector (30pp | 2.6mb | PDF), and others may be able to provide key expertise in collecting, analyzing, and disseminating terrorism related information.