PSC’s David Berteau: Contractors Likely to Rethink Workforce Security Approach Amid US-Iran Tensions

Jeff Brody
David Berteau

David Berteau, president and CEO of the Professional Services Council, said rising tensions between the U.S. and Iran could prompt government contractors to reexamine personnel security measures in the Middle East, the Washington Business Journal reported Friday.

The U.S. military launched airstrikes on facilities that were linked to an Iran-backed militia following the death of a civilian contractor in Baghdad. The Department of Defense said the defensive move has killed Qassem Soleimani, an Iranian general believed to be responsible for attacks on coalition bases throughout the region.

“Contractors aren’t issued military rifles. They’re more vulnerable,” said Berteau, a 2019 Wash100 Award recipient.

“Companies have to be thinking right now, What do I need to do differently, what do I need to be prepared for, will the government have threat information, will they share it with me?”

Berteau said the recent U.S. airstrikes are unlikely to affect the DoD budget and resource allocations for fiscal 2021, but he noted that lawmakers have the ability to authorize more funds for the Pentagon’s overseas contingency operations due to a national security concern.

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