The State and Local Anti-Terrorism Training (SLATT) Program provides instruction that focuses on the prevention of terrorism within the United States and provides the tools necessary for state, local, and tribal law enforcement officers to understand, detect, deter, and investigate acts of terrorism and violent criminal extremism in the U.S. by both international and domestic terrorists and extremists.
SLATT provides specialized multiagency anti-terrorism detection, investigation, and interdiction training to assist law enforcement in the discovery and prevention of challenges and threats by terrorists and/or violent criminal extremists.
Following the bombing of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 1995, the U.S. Attorney General asked BJA to develop a counter-terrorism training program for law enforcement in the United States. Developed in conjunction with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the SLATT Program was designed to provide instruction to enable state, local, and tribal law enforcement to recognize the precursor indicators of terrorist activity in order to help prevent acts of terrorism in the U.S. Since its inception in 1996, the SLATT Program has trained more than 142,000 state, local, and tribal law enforcement professionals throughout the country.
Prior to the attacks on September 11, 2001, few internationally inspired attacks in the United States caused deaths, injuries, or even significant property damage. Other than the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center, few pre-9/11 international attacks in the U.S. received media attention. Most of the pre-9/11 attacks against Americans occurred overseas, including the 1998 bombings of the American Embassies in East Africa; the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Scotland (189 Americans killed); and the many kidnappings and murders of Americans during the 1980s, especially in Lebanon. Prior to the 9/11 attacks, terrorism experts had recognized the emerging threats from groups such as al Qaeda.
Since that time, despite significant efforts from law enforcement in the United States to collect, analyze, and share information, the threat from both domestic and international terrorism continues to grow. The rise of groups like the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the continued threat from al Qaeda’s spin off groups such as al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) make the job of law enforcement more difficult. The opportunities many of these groups have to radicalize westerners, including American youth, using the Internet makes it much more difficult for state, local, and tribal law enforcement to prevent future attacks. As such it is important to ensure these officers receive top-level training to recognize threats from terrorist groups.
Counter-terrorism investigations often cross over into activities which may be protected by the United States Constitution, such as the taking of photographs, assembling in constitutionally protected events, or professing beliefs which may not be considered mainstream. The SLATT Program provides clarity and reinforcement of these protections, which will assist officers to understand the distinction between crimes of terrorism and other precursor activities and constitutionally protected activities. This allows law enforcement to protect the civil rights, civil liberties, and privacy of individual citizens.
Training and assistance is provided through:
The BJA SLATT Program has established long-term partnerships with the FBI, fusion centers, and the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices. The FBI frequently participates in SLATT workshops through the local Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) and is able to provide a local perspective that creates the potential for future networking opportunities.
A critical component of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the FBI is the nation’s lead federal law enforcement agency for investigating and preventing acts of domestic and international terrorism. Since DOJ retains this responsibility, it is fitting that BJA is the host and sponsor of the SLATT Program—the only training program designated to provide information specifically to state, local, and tribal law enforcement to help identify precursor indicators and prevent acts of terrorism, rather than responding to an act after it occurs. SLATT is unique in the unprecedented depth and range of terrorism prevention expertise that the program offers—SLATT instructors have worked on many of the most notorious terrorism cases, and their personal law enforcement experience helps the audience connect with them.
SLATT training programs fall under the following areas of interest:
The keys to preventing a possible terrorist or violent criminal extremist act are awareness and understanding what to look for.
BJA and SLATT developed the Communities Against Terrorism (CAT) Program. CAT provides law enforcement agencies with a tool to proactively engage local community members to identify possible precursors of terrorist activity. It encourages network-building between law enforcement and the community as well as business leaders and helps to forge a mutual sense of responsibility to combat terrorism. CAT provides industry-specific information on indicators and activities that may be associated with the planning and preparation of a terrorist attack. By providing information about potential terrorism indicators to businesses, law enforcement enhances its ability to prevent acts of terror.
Agencies can use the flier templates provided through CAT in their outreach efforts within their communities. They are customizable, allowing agencies to include their seals, logos, or emblems. The templates contain potential terrorism indicators that have been created for distribution to specific industries.
SLATT produces a number of training materials that are available in limited quantities at no charge to law enforcement. All SLATT materials are law enforcement sensitive and are for official use only. To learn more about SLATT, receive publications, register for an upcoming training, request to host a SLATT training, or access CAT materials, visit the password-protected SLATT website.
It is critical for law enforcement to distinguish between criminal activities and activities that may be protected by the U.S. Constitution. The SLATT Program has created a brief video as well as a print-ready informational flier, Privacy, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, to review these rights and to reinforce law enforcement’s departmental policies, procedures, and training.
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The SLATT Program maintains its terror prevention technical assistance capacity to respond to requests from federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies as well as university and college law enforcement agencies. Technical assistance in the form of specialized and individualized consultation, training materials, and course design is available at no cost, and these services and presentations are tailored to the specific needs of each requesting agency. SLATT’s subject matter experts play a critical role in technical assistance delivery by providing their contact information to workshop participants, who often contact instructors after sessions for follow-up as they return to their day-to-day responsibilities. SLATT also assists organizations (state police and sheriff’s associations) in designing in-house terrorism training.
State & Local Anti-Terrorism Training (SLATT)
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): Terrorism
U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS): State Homeland Security and Emergency Services
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810 Seventh Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20531
For Government Use Only