In recent years, U.S.-Canada border issues have been overshadowed by concerns surrounding illegal immigration and drug violence on the southern border. Earlier this summer, both countries agreed to work towards a more joint approach to border security aimed at addressing common threats and promoting economic cooperation.
In July, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews and U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, “met to advance a strategic dialogue on developing a shared vision for border security for Canada and the United States—one that will enhance security and resilience against common threats, while bolstering competitiveness and job creation.” A number of initiatives were announced, including an agreement to complete a joint threat and risk assessment which, “addresses drug trafficking and illegal immigration, the illicit movement of prohibited or controlled goods, agricultural hazards, and the spread of infectious disease.” In addition, a memorandum of understanding on cross-border currency seizures and information sharing was signed that, “will help to identify potential threats and assist in money-laundering and terrorist-financing investigations and prosecutions.” Increasingly, Canada is being pressured to further take on U.S. security priorities in an effort to keep trade flowing across the northern border.
Secretary Napolitano and Minister Toews also reached an agreement to safeguard and respond to disruptions of shared infrastructure that connect the two nations such as roads, power grids and bridges. The Canada-U.S. Action Plan for Critical Infrastructure is designed to, “strengthen the safety, security and resiliency of Canada and the United States by establishing a comprehensive cross-border approach to critical infrastructure resilience.” This includes building partnerships, improved information sharing, as well as risk management aimed at increasing the ability to prepare for emergencies like a terrorist attack or a natural disaster. The action plan is part of ongoing cross-border collaboration and builds off a recent deal reached between the Canadian federal and provincial governments in regards to protecting local infrastructure. It also appears to be linked to the Civil Assistance Plan signed by the U.S.-Canadian military in 2008, which allows the armed forces of one nation to support the other during a civil emergency.
full article http://beyourownleader.blogspot.com/2010/09/expanding-us-canada-security-and.html