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Coast Guard

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The U.S. Coast Guard’s mission is to protect the public, the environment, and U.S. economic interests — in the nation’s ports and waterways, along the coast, on international waters, or in any maritime region as required to support national security.

For over two centuries the U.S. Coast Guard has safeguarded the United States’ maritime interests in the heartland, in the ports, at sea, and around the globe. We protect the maritime economy and the environment, we defend our maritime borders, and we save those in peril. This history has forged our character and purpose as America’s Maritime Guardian — Always Ready for all hazards and all threats.

Today’s U.S. Coast Guard, with nearly 42,000 men and women on active duty, is a unique force that carries out an array of civil and military responsibilities touching almost every facet of the U.S. maritime environment.

By law, the Coast Guard has 11 missions: 

•Ports, waterways, and coastal security
•Drug interdiction
•Aids to navigation
•Search and rescue
•Living marine resources
•Marine safety
•Defense readiness
•Migrant interdiction
•Marine environmental protection
•Ice operations
•Other law enforcement

The legal basis for the Coast Guard is Title 14 of the United States Code, which states: “The Coast Guard as established January 28, 1915, shall be a military service and a branch of the armed force of the United States at all times.” Upon the declaration of war or when the President directs, the Coast Guard operates under the authority of the Department of the Navy. 

As members of a military service, Guardians on active duty and in the Reserve are subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice and receive the same pay and allowances as members of the same pay grades in the other four armed services.

The Coast Guard’s motto is “Semper Paratus,” which means “Always Ready.”

Coast Guard Rescues North Mississippi Flood Victims

Flood response crewmembers

NEW ORLEANS -- The Coast Guard responded to a flood in northern Mississippi rescuing several people and pets, Thursday. The response department of Coast Guard Sector Lower Mississippi River contacted local area counties offering assistance in responding to flooding in north Mississippi. Desoto County Emergency Management Agency requested Coast ... more

Coast Guard Repatriates 45 Migrants to Cuba

Coast Guard Cutter Dauntless smallboat crew

MIAMI -- The Coast Guard Cutter Knight Island repatriated 45 Cuban migrants to Bahia de Cabanas, Cuba, Wednesday. These repatriations are a result of two separate interdictions of people attempting to illegally migrate to the United States through the Florida Straits. On Saturday, the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Dauntless interdicted 25 mig... more

Coast Guard Crew Returns Following Arctic Science Deployment

Coast Guard Cutter Healy

SEATTLE – After completing 130 days of operations in the Bering Sea, Chukchi Sea, and Arctic Ocean, the Coast Guard Cutter Healy will moor in Seattle Thursday, Sept. 11.  During the past four months, Healy conducted three missions to further scientific knowledge and understanding of the Arctic.  The first mission, the Study of Under Ice Blooms... more

Rear Adm. Stosz to Continue with Coast Guard

Coast Guard Academy graduation 600x400

The U.S. Coast Guard has announced that Rear Adm. Sandra L. Stosz, superintendent of the Coast Guard Academy, has been selected for continuation as a rear admiral in the Coast Guard. Stosz became the first woman ever to lead a U.S. military academy when she began her tour at the academy in New London in 2011. Her tour ends in summer of 2015, ac... more

Judge Approves $1.4M in Restitution against Coast Guard Base Killer

A U.S. District Court judge on Wednesday granted the government's request for $1.4 million in restitution against James Michael Wells, sentenced in July to four consecutive life sentences for killing two co-workers at a U.S. Coast Guard installation on Kodiak Island in April 2012. The prosecutors are asking the court to award the money to the mu... more

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