The Department of Homeland Security provides for the public safety and security of the people of West Virginia through a highly motivated and professional workforce.
DHS contains multiple agencies and boards:
The Division of Administrative Services performs financial, procurement, human resources, asset management and construction functions within the department.
Justice and Community Services assists criminal and juvenile justice agencies and local government. Previously a division of the department and the support agency for the GCCDC, it became part of DAS through legislation that took effect in 2019. Through JCS, the Division of Administrative Services is the designated staffing agency for, and provides executive and administrative support to, the Governor's Committee on Crime, Delinquency and Correction along with all of its subcommittees, in the coordination and planning for the criminal justice system and administering federal and state grant programs assigned to it by the actions of the governor or the Legislature.
The Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation administers West Virginia's prisons, regional jails, juvenile centers, community corrections facilities, and parole system. Its mission is to enhance public safety, promote offender accountability and successfully reintegrate offenders into society.
The Parole Board, as part of West Virginia's criminal justice system, makes independent, quality, conditional releases of adult offenders as well as clemency recommendations to the governor. Effective June 5, 2020, the Parole Board was transferred to DCR for purposes of administration and other support.
The Division of Emergency Management, previously Homeland Security and Emergency Management, is West Virginia's primary agency for homeland security and the coordination of and response to all major disasters and incidents of major significance. The division provides coordination of emergency functions of various agencies at the state and local level during times of state and national emergency, whether natural or manmade.
The Division of Protective Services (Capitol Police) is responsible for maintaining the security of all state buildings and grounds in and adjacent to the West Virginia Capitol Complex. Its mission is to provide for the safety and security of all individuals who visit and work at the Capitol Complex.
The State Fire Marshal has statutory responsibility for the enforcement of laws covering fire prevention, hazardous substances and explosives; the installation and maintenance of fire control equipment: the adequacy of fire exits from buildings and all other places where people live, work and congregate; the determination of fire causes; the certification of fire departments for state revenues; the management of fire incident reporting systems; the state examination, certification and licensing of electricians; permits for blasters; the storage of explosives; testing and licensing of pyrotechnics; permits for fireworks; the routine periodic fire safety inspections of all structures except single family dwellings; and the approval of curriculum for all hazardous materials response teams.
The West Virginia Fusion Center coordinates a collaborative effort involving federal, state and local government as well as other partners to gather, process, analyze and share information and intelligence related to all crimes and all hazards.
The West Virginia State Police provides direct and indirect law enforcement services to the citizens of the state and to other law enforcement entities to ensure the continual security of persons and of residential and business properties, and the safety of motorists operating on the state's streets and highways.
The First Responders Honor Board is an advisory panel that recommends firefighters, law enforcement officers, and emergency services personnel to the Legislature for West Virginia's Medal of Valor.
The Office of the Secretary serves as the central administrative unit for all DHS divisions to ensure policies and procedures are followed uniformly and assists with the development of departmental and division policies and procedures.
History of the department
The department was created in 1989 as the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety, one of the Cabinet-level departments in the executive branch of state government.
Effective July 1, 2011, the West Virginia Division of Veterans' Affairs, formerly administered by the department, was redesignated the Department of Veterans' Assistance.
Effective May 28, 2020, the West Virginia National Guard - in the form of the Adjutant General's Office, the State Armory Board and the Military Awards Board - was removed from the department, which as a result was redesignated as the Department of Homeland Security.
WVDHS Office Phone Number: (304) 558-2930
Mailing Address: 1900 Kanawha Blvd., E.
Building 1, Room W-400
Charleston, WV 25305
For after hours emergencies call W. Va. Emergency Management Hotline (304) 558-5380
For media inquiries and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests