Can Contractors Use Deadly Force?

April 4, 2017

The Associated Press reports that contractors submitting proposals to build the U.S.-Mexico border wall are asking questions regarding their required security plans that must accompany their wall prototype designs. Questions posed on a website for government contractors included if the government would indemnify companies whose workers use deadly force.

According to the Homeland Security solicitation, all winning bidders must submit a security plan with details as to fall back positions, evacuation routines and methods, muster area, medical staff members/availability, number of security personnel, qualifications, years of experience, etc. in the event of a hostile attack. A chain-link fence with barbed wire around the construction site is required.

Athough Border Patrol and local police intend to establish a buffer zone around the wall's construction sites, contractors selected to build the wall must provide their own security. The Border Patrol said it would respond as needed only to hostile attacks.

Several groups have said they plan to protest, so bidders have been asked to demonstrate experience "executing high-profile, high-visibility and politically contentious" projects.

The agency, responding to questions from companies on a website for government contractors, said the Border Patrol would respond as needed if there is a hostile attack, but companies were responsible for security. The government won't allow waivers from state gun laws or indemnify companies whose workers use deadly force

Ronald Colburn, Border Patrol deputy chief when hundreds of miles of fences were built under President George W. Bush's administration, said companies should plan on training workers to know when to seek cover and stay put and when to retreat.

Read the AP story Border Wall Contractors Brace For Hostile Environment here.