By Elaine Deck, Guest Blogger; and Senior Program Manager, Smaller Law Enforcement Agency Technical Assistance Program, IACP
Joseph LaPorte, chairman of the Indian Country Law Enforcement Section and senior tribal advisor for the Program Manager in the Information Sharing Environment (PM-ISE), Office of the Director of National Security, testified on June 14 before the Tribal Law and Order Commission on Information Sharing.
LaPorte was asked to testify before the commission to update its members on efforts to improve information sharing among state, local, tribal, and federal justice agencies.
Formerly the director of public safety for the Litter River Band of Ottawa in Michigan, LaPorte now leads efforts to integrate Indian Country into our national information sharing architecture–primarily, the national network of fusion centers.
LaPorte testified that through PM-ISE and state leadership, his efforts have resulted in tribal law enforcement personnel being integrated into four fusion centers in Oklahoma, Arizona, Michigan, and Washington.
“Not all fusion centers allow tribal representation, though progress is being made,” LaPorte said. “We are attempting to create national standards for tribes in fusion centers, similar to standards for industry.”
The Washington State Fusion Center’s Fusion Liaison Officer (FLO) program, started in 2010, now has eight FLOs with the goal of soon including all state tribes. The commission acknowledged the improvement.