Coast Guard, SOUTHCOM participate in Integrated Advance 2019 exercise

Coast Guardsmen participate in Integrated Advance 2019 exercise at the Miami-Dade County Emergency Operations Center, April 12, 2019. Integrated Advance provides an opportunity for the Coast Guard, SOUTHCOM and its component commands, and multiple partners from varying levels in the Federal, State, and local governments, to exercise the whole of government response to a maritime mass migration scenario in the Caribbean. Coast Guard Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Murray.

Coast Guardsmen participate in the Integrated Advance 2019 exercise at the Miami-Dade County Emergency Operations Center. Coast Guard Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Murray.

MIAMI — The Homeland Security Task Force Southeast (HSTF-SE) and U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM)’s annual interagency exercise, Integrated Advance, is taking place April 15 through April 18.

Integrated Advance provides an opportunity for HSTF-SE and its component commands, and multiple partners from varying levels in the Federal, State, and local governments, to exercise the whole of government response to a maritime mass migration scenario in the Caribbean. In support of DHS’ plan to respond to a mass migration, which includes a supporting role for SOUTHCOM and its components, partner agencies train to be able to communicate and work together seamlessly and provide the required support if necessary to this humanitarian and national security crisis.

Homeland Security is the lead federal agency responsible for mass migration operations and SOUTHCOM trains every year in order to be able to support HSTF-SE’s mass migration operations plan, Operation Vigilant Sentry.

“A mass migration is a large-scale, complex challenge that requires a coordinated government response from Federal, State, and local agencies,” said Coast Guard Rear Adm. Peter Brown, commander of Coast Guard 7th District and Director, Homeland Security Task Force Southeast. “As we have unfortunately seen recently, illegal maritime migration can often lead to tragedy, such as the recent loss of more than 40 Haitian migrants at sea in three separate events. This mission is as much a humanitarian response as it is a border security mission and it is our responsibility to do everything we can do to train, integrate with, and support partner agencies in preparing for and responding to this potential crisis.”

Homeland Security Task Force Southeast is a standing multi-agency team that unifies the whole of government effort to monitor, identify, mitigate, and respond to large-scale migration events.

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