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Monday, January 30, 2023

DHS S&T Releases Solicitation Aimed at Continuing to Improve Wellness of DHS Workforce

Because of the complex missions and job requirements, DHS personnel often experience significant amounts of stress in their professional and personal lives.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) issued a solicitation, titled Human Performance and Resiliency, through its Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP) in order to continue the work of improving the wellness of the DHS workforce. Those interested have until 12:00 p.m. PST January 6 and April 6, 2022, to respond to the solicitation. Additionally, a virtual Industry Day will be held on November 10, 2021, from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. PST to discuss the solicitation and operational needs.

DHS employs highly-trained law enforcement, operations, and mission support professionals who are held to high ethical and moral standards. Because of the complex missions and job requirements, DHS personnel often experience significant amounts of stress in their professional and personal lives. DHS remains committed to providing resources to its workforce to address these stressors and situations. The Human Performance and Resiliency topic call seeks technologies and methods for personnel resilience, wellness promotion, and personnel tools to identify and resolve issues before reaching crisis levels.

“The health and wellness of the DHS workforce, especially in extreme situations, is vital for employees to carry out mission-critical responsibilities and a priority for our operational agencies,” said Melissa Oh, managing director of SVIP. “This solicitation complements current DHS employee wellness programs by bringing in innovative technologies with a high degree of usability across service delivery modalities to support real-time wellness monitoring.”

This SVIP solicitation seeks technical capabilities that could serve the mission needs of DHS operational components and programs, including Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Applications must be able to describe alignment to at least one of the following technical topic areas.

  1. Biometric Wearables: Wearable biometric device(s) that capture several biometric and metabolic leading indicators that can alert the user to initiate mitigating action.
  2. Sleep/Recovery Enhancement: Capability that evaluates sleep quality and recovery and/or recreates the restorative benefits of sleep.
  3. AI-enabled Mobile App: Mobile application that allows personnel to input personal information (diet, exercise, mood, injuries, etc.) and/or compile information from various wearable biometric monitoring devices in order to generate outputs describing factors contributing to their overall wellness. 

“Customs and Border Protection is excited to engage with industry on this critical topic. From humanitarian and disaster response to everyday threats presented by transnational criminal organizations and extreme operating conditions, Homeland Security professionals are subjected to intense stressors that have real world impacts to the personal and professional lives of the DHS workforce. Innovative technologies with the capability to track performance and wellness over time could contribute significantly to the overall resilience of DHS personnel and the execution of the DHS mission to protect the homeland,” stated Jeremy Ocheltree, deputy director of the CBP Innovation Team.

To register for the virtual Industry Day on November 10, 2021, please visit the S&T Events page.

Read more at DHS S&T

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The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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