Tuesday, 11 April 2017 13:40

Spotlight on Policy Area Secure: Civil Protection + Law Enforcement = Safer Baltic Sea Region

Written by  Andriy Martynenko
Swedish and Norwegian rescue forces and the police working together during a joint exercise (Photo: MSB, Thomas Henriksen)  Swedish and Norwegian rescue forces and the police working together during a joint exercise (Photo: MSB, Thomas Henriksen)

Policy Area Secure is a coordinated by the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) Secretariat and the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB)

Connect with PA Secure: www.bsr-secure.eu

Facebook/Twitter: @BSRSecure

Who we are

Since the inclusion of the former Priority Area Crime into the Policy Area Secure in 2015, our team had been striving to act in a holistic societal security paradigm that focuses on risk reduction management related to all threats, regardless whether their origins are natural disasters, man-made disasters or organised crime. We believe that the common efforts of the Baltic Sea Region countries within our Policy Area save lives prevent economic losses and contribute to making the region safer and more prosperous for people to live in. Within PA Secure we organize the activities around two interconnected pillars: civil protection and law enforcement, taking into account that the human dimension of security is as important as the establishment of efficient institutional mechanisms to tackle emergencies.


What we do

As coordinators, we believe in connecting people, networks and organisations facing common challenges. Common challenges became joint opportunities if we face them together.

We strive for building long-lasting professional relationships and creating a common security culture in the region. Our working days are filled with a lot of contacts with professionals: we are calling people, mailing people, providing them with a platform for a dialogue. It is already an achievement to have a group of civil protection or law enforcement experts from all the countries in the region to sit around one table. But in order to achieve what they set out to do they might need extra resources, be it carrying out academic research or funding. That is where we come in again identifying needs and relevant funding sources for a project, or a university with a particular research programme. We facilitate different initiatives for new projects, our organisations can even participate in some of them as partners. (There are 10 EUSBSR Flagship projects under Policy Area Secure). We also make sure that the lessons learned from the projects, research results and expert opinions are shared as widely as possible and conveyed to the policy makers.

What is new?

For more comprehensive list of PA Secure news, events and activities read our newsletter. Below are some highlights from the recent developments in all 4 areas of our action plan:

  1. Strengthening capacity to respond and to recover from major emergencies and accidents: better risk assessment and crisis management

“From Gaps to Caps” project finalised. The 24 months long flagship project within the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region; From Gaps to Caps – Risk Management Capability Based on Gaps Identification in the Baltic Sea Regions, has just been finalized. The final report is available here. From Gaps to Caps contributed to strengthening the macro-regional capacities for risk assessment and the establishment of efficient crisis management schemes to cope with natural and manmade disasters in the Baltic Sea Region.

  1. Build up resilience and prevention towards emergencies and threats at the local level

Cross-sectorial project - community resilience to climate change. With the financial support from the Swedish Institute, HA Climate and PA Secure have been leading a consortium to develop a project concept to improve the resilience of urban communities, related to climate change risks, threats and challenges. The resulting project (CASCADE: Community Safety Action for Supporting Climate Adaptation and Development, led by the Union of the Baltic Cities (UBC)) will bring together climate change adaptation and civil protection specialists from different countries in BSR to increase risk assessment cooperation between the national and the local levels. The UN Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction is one of the cornerstones in the upcoming project.

  1. Enhancing effective cooperation in protecting human beings against criminal threats, including trafficking in human beings from all forms of exploitation

The CBSS Task Force against Trafficking in Human Beings (TF-THB) partnered in a new project called Trafficking along Migration Routes (TRAM): Identification and Integration of Victims of Trafficking among Vulnerable Groups and Unaccompanied Children (2017-2018). It is coordinated by the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD) and funded by the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund of the European Union.

  1. Prevent and detect serious crime through developing efficient framework for law enforcement strategic and operational cooperation.

The project Joint Approach to Tackle Organised Cross-border Crime in the Baltic Sea Region (JATOC)   will set up a conceptual model for the joint regional analysis and encourage best practices of national Criminal Intelligence Systems between the participating member states law enforcement agencies to define common guidelines for further cooperation to tackle organised crime in the Baltic Sea Region. The project aims to create more synergy between the Baltic Sea Region Border Control Cooperation and the Baltic Sea Task Force on Organised Crime as well as with the EU Policy Cycle on shared activities and actions relating to cross border crime.

Where do we want to be?

In the near future we plan to:

  • Become a unique connecting hub in a dynamic multi-level and multi-actor context of civil protection and law enforcement
  • Act as a doorway to cross-sectorial cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region: establishing meaningful connections between different PACs and HACs
  • Continue building professional capacity of the civil protection and law enforcement experts in the region
  • Raise public awareness, for example, by involving volunteer organisations
  • Facilitate the process of policy debate and establishment of a coherent format for policy implementation in the Baltic Sea Region


Contacts: Civil Security team, Council of the Baltic Sea States Secretariat

Janusz Gąciarz, Senior Adviser on Civil Security, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jacek Paszkowski, Adviser for Policy Area Secure, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nina Jernberg, Project Assistant, Civil Security, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Andriy Martynenko, Project Officer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB)

Julia Fredriksson, Adviser on EU and International Issues, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Spotlight blog series introduces the concrete work done by the Policy Areas and Horizontal Actions of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region.

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