Canadian public safety organisation joins TCCA

The Canadian Public Safety Broadband Network Innovation Alliance (PIA) has announced its membership of TCCA.

The organisation was founded in 2019 by Halton Police, Peel Police and the Greater Toronto Airports Authority. According to a statement, it has established the country’s first dedicated public safety broadband network, with a coverage footprint of more than 2.5 million residents in Ontario. The PIA also “represents the needs of public safety, first responders and critical infrastructure operators.”

Speaking of the organisation, a spokesperson said: “Members of the PIA include government entities, public safety agencies, and national and regional telecoms carriers. Members also include service providers in the utilities, air and transport sectors, technology manufacturers, software firms and research and development organisations.

“The PIA has established working relationships between all members in order to manage, coordinate, promote and maintain the PSBN. The focus is on common advocacy in aspects of PSBN policy that will help bring cost-effective, cybersecure, reliable and resilient access to data wherever and whenever needed by first responders."

Executive director of the alliance, deputy chief Anthony Odoardi, said: “We are very excited to join the ranks of our peers in public safety critical communications from around the world. We are looking forward to collaborating with, learning from, and sharing our experiences with the dedicated and professional public safety communications operators who are currently members of TCCA.

“In Canada, as in the rest of the world, secure, reliable, and high-performance communications for our first responders and critical infrastructure operators is seen as a critical factor in ensuring the safety and security of our citizens for current and future generations.”

TCCA CEO, Kevin Graham, said: “On behalf of TCCA, I extend a very warm welcome to the PSBN Innovation Alliance as they join our global critical communications community. We look forward to their valuable contributions and insights as they join other international member peers and industry in co-operating and collaborating through TCCA, to evolve mission critical capability for critical users everywhere.”

Earlier this year, the Temporary National Coordination Office of Public Safety Canada published a comprehensive report regarding the future deployment of a national broadband network for public safety. The PIA collaborated with stakeholders, proposing a working hybrid PSBN model to the TNCO committee, based on the approach taken in Ontario. The TNCO report is also aligned with the operating models developed and deployed by the PIA.

Chief Stephen Tanner of the Halton Regional Police Service said: “The PIA has been a key voice for Canadian first responders, advocating for an equitable and community safety-oriented vision for our telecommunications policies.

“Ontario’s PSBN – and Canada’s national PSBN system – will be our critical technology framework for 9-1-1 operations over the next 25 years and beyond. First responders’ access to ‘always-on’ critical data in the moments that matter will help save countless lives over the years ahead.”

PIA will also have a presence in the Government Authorities Global Village at this year's Critical Communications World, taking place in Vienna in June.

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