As a part of their ongoing efforts to keep those in the industry informed in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Security Industry Association (SIA), the Electronic Security Association (ESA) and The Monitoring Association (TMA) sent a letter to members this morning, March 20.
"During this challenging time, the Electronic Security Association, the Security Industry Association and The Monitoring Association are united in representing your interest in the electronic security and life safety industry. The rapid government response through executive action, regulatory changes and legislation at the local, state and federal levels to the COVID-19 virus is unprecedented. We stand together to assure all members, consumers and other stakeholders that this industry will continue to remain on the front lines as a vital partner in public safety.
"We understand member companies across the country are contending with executive and legislative action that potentially impacts electronic security and life safety businesses in thousands of jurisdictions across the country because of confusion over defining the essential services critical to the nation’s infrastructure.
"To that end, we wish to inform you of recently published guidelines from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security which provide 'identification of essential critical infrastructure workers during COVID-19 response.' While these guidelines are not a mandate to state and local jurisdictions, they do provide strategic guidance toward the unified effort to maintain the nation’s critical infrastructure, and as such we believe these guidelines serve an important role as communities respond with executive and legislative action. The list of 'Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers' identified by CISA and important to our industry includes:
- Workers supporting communications systems and information technology used by law enforcement, public safety, medical, energy and other critical industries
- Maintenance of communications infrastructure, including privately owned and maintained communication systems supported by technicians, operators, call centers, wireline and wireless providers, cable service providers, satellite operations, undersea cable landing stations, internet exchange points and manufacturers and distributors of communications equipment
- Installation, maintenance and repair technicians that establish, support or repair service as needed
- Workers who support command centers, including, but not limited to network operations command centers, broadcast operations control centers and security operations command centers
- Data center operators, including system administrators, HVAC and electrical engineers, security personnel, IT managers, data transfer solutions engineers, software and hardware engineer, and database administrators
- Dispatchers involved with service repair and restoration
"We appreciate your participation in this industry and the work you do to protect property and lives. This challenge will make us stronger and rest assured we will be here to protect you, your company and the essential critical infrastructure services you provide."
The letter was signed by Merlin Guilbeau, CEO, ESA; Don Erickson, CEO, SIA; and Celia Besore, executive director, TMA.