Head of Coast Guard on Great Lakes speaks at Border Management Summit

9th Coast Guard District News
CLEVELAND — Representatives from the Coast Guard along with fellow federal, state and international partners met at a two-day border management summit held in Detroit, Monday and Tuesday.

Agencies involved in the border management summit include: Coast Guard; U.S. Customs and Border Protection; Department of Homeland Security; O Division Royal Canadian Mounted Police; and Michigan State Police.

The U.S. and Canada share the world’s largest international land border. Nearly $1.6 billion in trade as well as 300,000 people travel across the border on a daily basis. The U.S. and Canada share a unique relationship, and work jointly to protect against terrorism and organized crime, while steadily advancing economic trade and growth, as detailed in the “Beyond the Border” action plan.

The “Beyond the Border” action plan states, “The United States and Canada are staunch allies, vital economic partners, and steadfast friends, and we share responsibility for the safety, security and resilience of the United States and Canada.”

This year’s summit was held at an interesting and innovative time in the implementation of border protection technology and management. In order to further explore these new and exciting advancements happening along the U.S./Canada border, this year’s summit focused on preventing terrorism, organized crime, while facilitating trade and cross-border law enforcement.

“There is little that happens on the waters of the Great Lakes that isn’t of bi-national interest and importance,” said Rear Adm. Michael N. Parks, commander of the 9th Coast Guard District. “As we say often in the Coast Guard – nearly every aspect of our operations on the Great Lakes is watermarked with Canada.”

“There is little doubt about the shared nature of the Great Lakes or of our border with Canada. Our governments have made clear the strategic intent. Our success will depend on how we translate that shared responsibility into a vehicle for shared prosperity,” said Parks.

“I believe that the roadmap toward improved U.S./Canada border security will be marked by signs repeatedly pointing us toward…shared awareness, seamless operations andsychronized priorities,” said Parks.

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