Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Site Notices
9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 11/12/2001 7:32:05 AM EDT
Just when you thought maybe these people have a grip on what it takes to run a secure operation, you find out that not everyone who has access to commercial jetliners has been required to have a criminal background check! [size=4]FAA to widen airline screening[/size=4] [b]Criminal checks of workers with access to planes[/b] By Glen Johnson, Globe Staff, 11/12/2001 WASHINGTON - The head of the Federal Aviation Administration said she plans to use emergency powers to impose regulations requiring criminal background checks for baggage screeners, pilots, and anyone with ground access to commercial airliners. While new applicants for pilot and baggage screener jobs at large airports are already subject to such checks, FAA Administrator Jane F. Garvey said applying the checks to existing employees at all 450 commercial airports in the country would add a layer of passenger safety after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The pilots' union said it would oppose checks on current pilots because they might dredge up old arrests or false charges that could threaten long careers marked by exemplary service in the cockpit. The checks would reach back 10 years. A person who had been convicted of any of a list of 27 offenses could not be hired as a baggage screener or allowed unescorted ground access. In addition to those convicted, those who pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity would be excluded. The proposed regulation would not mandate the firing of pilots who failed the check, but would deny them ground access to perform preflight, walk-around inspections on parked aircraft, putting their employment in question. Current baggage screeners who failed the check would be fired. The FBI has yet to complete its investigation of the Sept. 11 attacks. But the fact that the hijackers spent years devising their plot - and fears that they may have been assisted by associates in airports or will be followed by terrorist ''sleepers'' lying in wait - reveals vulnerabilities in the existing regulations, Garvey said. ''I think it's necessary that we have as much information as we can about those people who work closest to an aircraft,'' Garvey said in an interview. ''I think we look at the whole issue of a security system. There must be layers in the system and a series of redundancies. The aviation side of this business is already built that way, and as we move forward, the security side of the house has to have the same approach,'' the administrator added. Since the regulations would apply to the roughly 750,000 people granted unescorted access to airplanes, including baggage handlers, fuel truck operators, and caterers, it would apply to pilots, who must perform preflight aircraft inspections. That has triggered some animosity from a group that is already chafing under heightened terminal security that in some cases has forced uniformed pilots to walk through metal detectors without their shoes and hats, and sometimes to discard nail clippers or other items from their personal luggage. ''We are leery of solutions that don't solve anything but merely place additional burdens and hassles on the people who deserve it least,'' said John Mazor, chief spokesman for the Air Line Pilots Association, which represents pilots at most of the nation's major airlines. - continued -
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 7:34:24 AM EDT
Under the new regulations, all checkpoint screeners, their supervisors, and anyone with access to secure airport areas or with unescorted access to airplanes would be subject to a criminal background check. The list of disqualifying crimes includes murder, kidnapping, armed robbery, burglary, theft, aggravated assault, and illegal possession of a controlled substance. It does not include drunken driving, an offense that was a stated concern of the pilots association. Anyone found to have committed a disqualifying offense would be given a chance to demonstrate that his or her criminal record contains inaccurate information before any disciplinary action was taken. Under existing regulations, no person with access to secure airport areas had a background check before 1996, and no screener was subjected to such a check before 1998. Legislation passed by Congress in 2000 required background checks for incoming pilots and screeners at several dozen of the nation's largest airports, but it would not apply to those working in the hundreds of smaller airfields until 2003. Among those supporting the broader checks is the American Association of Airport Executives, which represents airport managers at all points, ranging from the solo operator at Wolf Point, Mont., to executives at busy O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. ''After Sept. 11, we think you have to do three things: put more fixes on the airplanes, which the airlines have done; have more professional screening, which is in the process of happening; and provide better security around the perimeter of parked airplanes, which is our responsibility. One way to do that is to know who you are providing access around parked airplanes,'' said Charles Barclay, president of the airport association. The background checks to be imposed are part of the airline security legislation passed last month by the Senate. The House has passed a companion bill, but final legislation and any of the final provisions remain in doubt because the two chambers disagree about whether airport security workers should be made federal employees, or should remain employees of private security firms working under heightened federal guidelines and supervision. In recognition of the stalemate and the concerns among the traveling public about safety, Garvey is preparing to impose the regulations under her authority to secure the aviation system. - continued -
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 7:35:07 AM EDT
A draft of the proposal was to be shown to Transportation Secretary Norman Y. Mineta on Friday, but the meeting was rescheduled for this week. Garvey said she plans to use emergency powers to issue the regulations in the coming days without the normal review or waiting period. ''We're willing to suggest that airports and airlines start with some of the newer employess and move back,''the administrator said. ''I'm finding more and more people saying to me, `I'm willing to give this up to ensure we have the right security measures.' Most of the people I have talked to have said that `I want the person I'm sitting next to and the person working on my plane to have been checked as thoroughly as possible,''' she said. Mazor said the pilots association is not opposed to checks for new hires but is opposed to checks for existing employees. ''Pilots are, I think, rightfully concerned about conducting criminal background checks on employees who have been there, in some cases 20 or 30 years,'' he said. ''You have to ask yourself, what kind of security threat do they present? The answer is none.'' Mazor added: ''Let's say you find out when he was 19 he had a DUI or a disorderly conduct or perhaps some other serious offense that has absolutely nothing to do with his ability to fly the airplane or his trustworthiness as an employee? You're simply dragging up old dirt for no purpose.'' The union also fears mistaken charges could taint a pilot's record, even if the charges are refuted, Mazor said. Garvey said the 10-year lookback, the specified disqualifying offenses, and the right to explain should address due-process concerns. Garvey has also said she wants to require the airlines to check to ensure that any passenger checking a bag takes the later step of boarding their flight. The process, known as bag-matching, is used on international flights, but not domestically. Security specialists say that is a major vulnerability, because a passenger could check a bag containing a bomb but never board, as happened on Pan Am Flight 103, which exploded in 1988 over Lockerbie, Scotland. See article at: [url]http://boston.com/dailyglobe2/316/nation/FAA_to_widen_airline_screening+.shtml[/url] Eric The('Hassle'?DidHeSay'Hassle'?)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 7:45:19 AM EDT
I think criminal background checks are mostly just an act of sticking your head in the sand anyway, in light of today's context. Most of these highjackings are terrorist activities, not the acts of previously convicted criminals. I'd bet a dollar to a dime that not one of the 9/11 terrorists had a criminal history that would turn up in most background checks. I'll also bet that there was no one in any way involved that did either. What are they trying to minimize lost luggage?
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 7:55:02 AM EDT
This crap reminds me of the story about the drunk who lost his car keys. He lost them in the dark alley out back, but was looking for them out front under the street ights baecause the light was better. I doubt one hijacking has been stopped or even deterred because of our airline "security". NPR had the airline security agent of the year on the other day. She stopped a "cowboy" with a hunting knife one day. He was going to put it in his checked baggage, but returned to her gate from the wrong direction so she was suspiscious. Turned out he had stashed it in his boot under his foot. She found it & got him charged with carying a concealed weapon. Sounded like she was real proud of herself. too. A guy that wouldn't have hurt anyone now has at least an arrest record. As we get closer & closer to a police state, I'm amazed at how many people want to be "the" police.
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 8:08:25 AM EDT
What about domestic violence convictions? If we can't allow wife-beaters to own guns, we can't trust them around planes, either, right?
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 8:16:58 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Norm_G: This crap reminds me of the story about the drunk who lost his car keys. He lost them in the dark alley out back, but was looking for them out front under the street ights baecause the light was better. I doubt one hijacking has been stopped or even deterred because of our airline "security". NPR had the airline security agent of the year on the other day. She stopped a "cowboy" with a hunting knife one day. He was going to put it in his checked baggage, but returned to her gate from the wrong direction so she was suspiscious. Turned out he had stashed it in his boot under his foot. She found it & got him charged with carying a concealed weapon. Sounded like she was real proud of herself. too. A guy that wouldn't have hurt anyone now has at least an arrest record. As we get closer & closer to a police state, I'm amazed at how many people want to be "the" police.
View Quote
I hear ya.
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 11:17:36 AM EDT
So y'all think that a routine criminal background check wouldn't turn up something so mundane as an immigration law violation? BTW, weren't many of the 19 terrorists on a 'watch list' for terrorists? If all that's true, then why have any checks on anyone at all? Eric The(BabyStepsAtFirstSeemPreposterousNow)Hun[>­]:)]
Link Posted: 11/12/2001 11:31:46 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/12/2001 11:25:51 AM EDT by No_Expert]
The terrorists were "suspected" and on watchlists...supposedly. and that didn't stop them from getting ON the plane. Now, if a person is a "sleeper" agent, they have done nothing to get a record, keep their nose clean, and probably have a false identity that can't be traced back to anything they did do in their own past. Now, a "regular Joe", had problems early in life, "young and stupid" is the term usually associated with parts of one's life in which things happen against the better judgement, he'll lose the job he's had for five to ten years and done an exemplary job at. Then they'll hire a bunch of "new" people to fill the positions....and they'll be "perfect". I did Security for many years after the Corps...and most of the guards I had, had clean backgrounds, and great interviews...and I still fired them for stupid things they did on the job... the few I had for years that did their job...I could care less what they did before that wasn't enough to stop them from getting hired. No_Expert edited cuz I can't spel
Top Top