Edition: Tue, November 22, 2005
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U.S. Northern Command (USNORTHCOM)

USNORTHCOM was established in 2002 to provide command and control of Department of Defense (DoD) homeland defense efforts and to coordinate defense support of civil authorities.

USNORTHCOM's specific mission:
- Conduct operations to deter, prevent, and defeat threats and aggression aimed at the United States, its territories and interests within the assigned area of responsibility (AOR); and
- As directed by the president or secretary of defense, provide defense support of civil authorities including consequence management operations.

U.S. Northern Command's AOR includes air, land and sea approaches and encompasses the continental United States, Alaska, Canada, Mexico and the surrounding water out to approximately 500 nautical miles. It also includes the Gulf of Mexico, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The defense of Hawaii and our territories and possessions in the Pacific remain the responsibility of U.S. Pacific Command. U.S. Northern Command is also responsible for security cooperation and coordination with Canada and Mexico.

- USNORTHCOM consolidates under a single unified command existing missions that were previously executed by other DoD organizations. This provides unity of command, which is so important to mission accomplishment.

- USNORTHCOM plans, organizes and executes homeland defense and civil support missions, but has few permanently assigned forces. The command will be assigned forces whenever necessary to execute missions, as ordered by the president and secretary of defense.

Civil service employees and uniformed members representing all service branches comprise USNORTHCOM's headquarters located at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo. The commander of USNORTHCOM also commands the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), a bi-national command responsible for aerospace warning and aerospace control for Canada, Alaska and the continental United States.

- USNORTHCOM's civil support mission includes domestic disaster relief operations that occur during fires, hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. Support also includes counter-drug operations and managing the consequences of a terrorist event employing a weapon of mass destruction. The command provides assistance to a primary federal agency when tasked by DoD. Per the Posse Comitatus Act, military forces can provide civil support, but cannot become directly involved in law enforcement.

- In providing civil support, USNORTHCOM generally operates through established Joint Task Forces subordinate to the command. An emergency must exceed the capabilities of local, state and federal agencies before USNORTHCOM becomes involved. In most cases, support will be limited, localized and specific. When the scope of the disaster is reduced to the point that the primary federal agency can again assume full control and management without military assistance, USNORTHCOM will exit, leaving the on-scene experts to finish the job.


The Week of the Military Family

Washington, DC - During the Week of the Military Family, November 21 - 25, the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (NACCRRA) would like to remind service members of financial assistance available to them and their families to help with the cost of child care.Thanks to Operation Military Child Care (OMCC) and Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCIYN) these families have access to affordable, quality child care.

Operation: Military Child Care (OMCC), administered by NACCRRA, provides financial relief and assistance locating quality child care for eligible military families who do not have access to the DOD's on-base child care options. OMCC is specifically focused on providing relief to the families of those serving in the Global War on Terror, including Guard and Reserve service members. Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood (MCCIYN) is a sister-program to the OMCC program. It supports active duty military families who do not live near military bases, but still need high quality child care. Both programs, launched earlier this year, locate and subsidize child care comparable to what a service member would receive on a military installation.

See the site for more information: