What is PS-Prep™?
In 2007, Congress directed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to establish and implement the voluntary private sector preparedness accreditation and certification program. The result of this directive, PS-Prep™, is designed to improve the preparedness of private sector and not-profit organizations through conformance to consensus-based preparedness standards and best practices. PS-Prep™ will enable organizations to identify and implement the necessary steps for instituting and maintaining a comprehensive management system that addresses business continuity, organizational resilience, emergency and disaster management. In addition, DHS will provide recognition for those entities, which certify to the adopted preparedness standards.
PS-Prep™ is a voluntary program, primarily serving as a resource for private and non-profit entities interested in instituting a comprehensive business continuity management system. Incorporating three industry standards, PS-Prep™ offers organizations the opportunity to develop and maintain certification to nationally recognized and respected approaches to resilience and preparedness.
In August 2007, Congress passed Public Law 110-53, Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act. This law amends the Homeland Security Act (2002) by adding Section 524, which calls for Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to establish and implement a voluntary private sector preparedness accreditation and certification program. The DHS Secretary designated the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to lead the development of the private sector preparedness program, in coordination with the DHS Office of Infrastructure Protection, the DHS Private Sector Office, and the DHS Science and Technology Directorate.
In June 2008, DHS signed an agreement with the ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) to establish and oversee the development and implementation of the accreditation and certification requirements for PS-Prep™.
In October 2009, DHS published a notice in the Federal Register announcing its intent to adopt three preparedness standards. Following a series of public meetings and the incorporation of public comments, the three standards, listed below, were approved in June 2010 based on scalability, balance of interest and relevance to PS-Prep™.
- ASIS International (PDF 1.2 MB)
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- British Standards Institution (BSI)
- National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
These standards provide a comprehensive management systems approach to organizational resilience, preparedness and business continuity widely applicable for private and non-profit organizations.
Enacted in October 2007, Public Law 110-53 Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act serves to:
- Amend the Homeland Security Act (2002), directing DHS to develop guidance and identify best practices to assist action by the private sector in identifying hazards, assessing risks and impacts and developing mutual aid agreements, taking into consideration small business concerns.
- Direct the DHS Secretary, acting through a designated officer, to establish and implement a voluntary private sector preparedness accreditation and certification program. Requires that officer to: (1) support the development and updating of voluntary preparedness standards and (2) develop and promote a program to certify the preparedness of private sector entities that voluntarily choose to implement the program.
- Direct the designated officer and any selected entity to: (1) regularly monitor and inspect the operations of any third party conducting certifications; (2) revoke accreditations and certifications under specified circumstances and (3) maintain and make public a listing of private sector entities that are certified as being in compliance.
For a complete copy of the legislation, visit: www.intelligence.senate.gov/laws/pl11053.pdf