Should TSA delay background checks on airport workers?

(Bita Honarvar, AJC)

(Bita Honarvar, AJC)

Channel 2 Action News reported this week that the Transportation Security Administration is dealing with such a backlog in conducting employee background checks at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport and other airports that it is allowing airport employers to hire workers without them.

TSA spokesman Jon Allen said the agency is processing checks and security threat analysis as quickly as possible. He told Channel 2 the TSA has given airport employers “interim regulatory relief” in hiring, although the backlog at Hartsfield-Jackson has been resolved.

Allen said security has not been undermined since the new policy was issued and that checks will be done eventually.

U.S. Rep. Paul Broun, however, accused the TSA of being incompetent. “You can’t put unsecured people or people that you haven’t checked in a secured environment,” Broun told Channel 2.

Previously, any new employee was required to undergo both a TSA criminal background check and a security threat analysis because of access to certain security areas off limits to civilians.

Do you have a problem with what critics suggest is a hire-first-ask-questions-later policy?

24 comments Add your comment


April 26th, 2012
12:43 pm

I agree with Senator Broun (and I’m not republican). We are waisting tax dollars to train people who may possibly end up not passing a background check to begin with.

Bad Idea

April 26th, 2012
1:54 pm

Kris T.

April 26th, 2012
2:00 pm

Hummm No drug test no welfare check. No background check to be a TSA Agent. Another Brilliant idea from a southern Republican. No wonder Georgia is last in education and ethics.

Ned Puddleman

April 26th, 2012
2:11 pm

They should have their privates felt and squeezed the way passengers do.

America is dead

April 26th, 2012
2:13 pm

A dad

April 26th, 2012
2:22 pm

Great. TSA will frisk a 4-yr old in line, but not check on employees with access to various parts of the airport. Stupid really is as stupid does I guess.

Just Wow

April 26th, 2012
2:32 pm

The TSA should be disbanded immediately and the workers sent back to the food courts.

Kris T.

April 26th, 2012
2:46 pm

I wonder if food court workers have to pass a drug/background check?


April 26th, 2012
2:50 pm

You people should be ashamed of yourselves. How dare you insult food court workers by comparing them to TSA agents?

Kris T.

April 26th, 2012
2:51 pm

Enter your comments here

Kris T.

April 26th, 2012
2:53 pm

Opps my bad.I Apologize to the food court workers.


April 26th, 2012
3:18 pm

…now wait a dadgummit minute…does not take a genius to figure out that every terriorist organization is already planning to take advantage of this VERY frightening situation…might as well let me take my aliminum bat or better yet, my 357 aboard flights that I take!! Hello…there are hundreds of military personnel being discharged every day…most of these service people have already had some sort of background check…DAH!!!!!! i’ve seen multimedia ads asking employers to hire veterans….well, get on board GOVERNMENT. Whoever came up with this hairbrain non-solution should be standing in the soup line next week.


April 26th, 2012
3:21 pm

Absolutely, if not background checked, then why on earth would we want to be “screened” by them. ALL people who work at the airport should be background checked. Of course, this would not weed out certain societal negative qualities (as we’ve found by Secret Service – who are heavily back-ground checked, still not meeting the qualities EXPECTED of their profession)!


April 26th, 2012
3:23 pm

Johnny: Make them go through the complete background check first like most companys do!


April 26th, 2012
3:45 pm

I am not a Democrat or Republican….and I don’t drink Tea. But this is some bull…stuff. TSA is a money hog and we know it. Why can’t we have our service men and women perform this task? Especially those who are back from the Middle East. They can have maybe a six month to a year assignement before moving on to their next assignment. It would be a much needed change for them and I think it would help ease them back into life back home. When I have travelled over seas, various countries use their military as security. Why do we have to get those people??? Going through security is the worst. I’m thinking Net Jets!!!


April 26th, 2012
3:55 pm

It would be good to stop a moment to consider what is really going on here. The way the government spends money, we know this back log is not caused by not being willing to spend the money. There is a reason that this government does not want to spend money on background checks for TSA workers? Who is it that they think such a lax policy would benefit?


April 26th, 2012
5:00 pm

TSA should be abolished IMMEDIATELY. They are incompetent, rife with child molesters, drug runners, theives, and perverts. These facts are all well-documented. Every day we hear of a case of a TSA employee violating some law or some person.

In Nuremberg they hung persons who committed heinous crimes who defended themselves as “only following orders,” That is how these criminals are defended by their superiors.

We now live in a police state. We must undo what Bush and Obama and the neocons in congress (both parties) have done. Begin by abolishing the TSA and restoring FULL responsiblity for airline safety to the airlines (and no, I am not referring to the half-assed, pseudo government control that existed on 9-11. Most of those failures were government based and not the fault of airlines trying ot keep their passengers safe. They have not been able to do that with any sound authority for at least 40 years.

John Daly

April 26th, 2012
5:19 pm

Kris T., maybe you should read the article. Rep. Broun said it is a bad idea for the TSA to hire people that have not been screened.


April 26th, 2012
5:51 pm

The absolute worst case of BO I’ve ever encountered in my entire life was one of the screeners @ Hartsfield a few years ago. I mean this guy couldn’t have been anywhere near soap and water in two weeks, he just reeked. Not very relevant to the background check topic…just thought I would share.

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April 27th, 2012
1:52 am

Common sense: “You can’t put unsecured people or people that you haven’t checked in a secured environment.” Government incompetency strikes, again.