ARTESIA, NEW MEXICO— U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske delivered remarks yesterday at the Change of Command Ceremony honoring Chief Dan M. Harris, Jr, which was held at the academy in Artesia, New Mexico. Chief Harris was recently named as the new Chief of the U.S. Border Patrol Academy. Attendees at the ceremony included Border Patrol Chief Mark Morgan, Deputy Border Patrol Chief Ronald Vitiello, and Office of Training and Development Assistant Commissioner Chris Hall. The Chief Superintendent of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Kevin Jones, Texas Department of Public Safety Director, Steve McCraw, and Federal Law Enforcement Training Center Director, Connie Patrick, were also in attendance.
“Providing top notch professional training to new Border Patrol Agents is of the utmost importance,” said Commissioner Kerlikowske. “Under Chief Harris’ steady head, I am confident that the Academy will continue to serve as the finest foundation for producing the best-qualified agents to keep our nation and its border safe and secure.”
To maintain these high standards, the Border Patrol Agent basic training curriculum is undergoing an update in order to utilize the most effective methods and tools available. The new training curriculum incorporates recommendations from several Use of Force Reviews, the 21st Century Policing Report, the CBP Integrity Advisory Panel report, and also Non-Governmental Organizations. Training will be performance-based, in realistic training environments, with increased focus on safe tactics, de-escalation strategies, and communication techniques.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.