FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Unions Say “Further Delay is Not an Option”
Las Vegas, NV – Angrily declaring that “our government has abdicated its responsibility” in protecting the public from threats to transportation security, AFL-CIO transportation unions today declared that “further delay is not an option” in closing security gaps at our nation’s ports, transit systems, rails, and highways. And while they said progress has been made in aviation security, the unions outlined several specific measures that must be taken immediately.
“We can’t tolerate one more day of our government’s ‘all talk, no action’ approach to transportation security. Congress must step in and protect our nation’s workers, passengers, and the public” said Edward Wytkind, President of the AFL-CIO’s Transportation Trades Department (TTD), adding that “nobody is made any safer by photo ops.”
At the biannual meeting of TTD’s Executive Committee, leaders of TTD’s 35 affiliated unions unanimously adopted a policy statement calling for a number of specific measures, including:
- A significant increase in federal security aid for rail and transit systems, an area in which experts say the needs are 30 times greater than the current federal effort;
- Greater security training for workers, including stronger whistle-blower protections for those who report security lapses;
- Expanded security for freight trains and facilities, particularly those that are involved with hazardous chemicals;
- Increased security for intercity buses, and stronger safety and security inspections for commercial vehicles entering the U.S.;
- Greater enforcement of — and funding for — new Coast Guard regulations on port security, and increasing the inspection of container seals and empties;
- Closing loopholes weakening both flight attendant security training and the security of maintenance performed on U.S. aircraft at overseas repair stations.
Three years after the 9/11 attacks, “sufficient resources have not been allocated, common-sense requirements have not been imposed, and too often employees and their unions have not been enlisted as true partners in the process,” the transportation leaders concluded in their statement.
TTD represents 35 member unions in the rail, aviation, transit, trucking, highway, longshore, maritime and related industries. For more information, visit www.ttd.org.