Today, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced the elevation of the DHS Office for State and Local Law Enforcement (OSLLE) to the Office of the Secretary, and the elevation of the OSLLE leader to the position of Assistant Secretary. The changes, which take effect immediately, grant the OSLLE a senior platform, with direct reporting to the Secretary, to enhance our work with law enforcement partners every day to execute the Department’s public safety mission.
“As the largest law enforcement organization in the federal government, it is critical that the interests of our partners at the state and local level are woven into the fabric of our Department,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “The elevation of the Office for State and Local Law Enforcement, now reporting directly to the Secretary, will better ensure we, and our partners, are advancing our public safety mission.”
With approximately 80,000 law enforcement officers across nine different agencies and offices, the Department’s partnerships with the 18,000 state, local, tribal, territorial, and campus (SLTTC) law enforcement agencies in the United States are critical to keeping communities safe. OSLLE plays a crucial role in creating, maintaining, and furthering these partnerships, while simultaneously representing and advocating for SLTTC law enforcement within DHS during policy and program development.
The move, announced today, better aligns OSLLE to fulfill the breadth of these responsibilities. By relocating from the Office of Partnership and Engagement to the Office of the Secretary, the OSLLE can more holistically ensure that law enforcement equities are represented throughout the Department during policy, program, and initiative development; that law enforcement and terrorism-focused grants are appropriately centered on terrorism prevention activities; and that DHS provides maximal information, resources, and operational support to our law enforcement partners.
The elevation of OSLLE reflects the Department’s prioritization of support to SLTTC law enforcement around the country. Other examples include the requirement that this year’s State Homeland Security Program (SHSP) and Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) grant recipients dedicate at least 35% of their awards to Law Enforcement Terrorism Prevention Activities (LETPA). This increase, from a statutory minimum of 25% to 35%, will ensure that an additional $103 million is dedicated to supporting our SLTTC partners to better understand, recognize, prepare for, and prevent threats or acts of terrorism.
For more information on the OSLLE, please visit https://www.dhs.gov/office-state-and-local-law-enforcement.