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DHS Is Not Coordinating the Department's Efforts to Defend the Nation's Food, Agriculture, and Veterinary Systems against Terrorism

Executive Summary

According to the Securing Our Agriculture and Food Act (SAFA), the program should provide oversight, lead policy initiatives, and coordinate with DHS components and Federal agencies.  However, the Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Office (CWMD) has not yet carried out a program to meet SAFA’s requirements.  This occurred because CWMD believes it does not have clearly defined authority from the Secretary to carry out the requirements of the SAFA.  In addition, since its establishment in December 2017, CWMD has not prioritized SAFA requirements but instead has focused its resources on other mission areas.  As a result, CWMD has limited awareness of DHS’ ongoing efforts and cannot ensure it is adequately prepared to respond to a terrorist attack against the Nation’s food, agriculture, or veterinary systems.  We made three recommendations to DHS’ CWMD to improve oversight, policy initiatives, and coordination of the Department’s efforts to protect the Nation’s food, agriculture, and veterinary systems. 

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