SOURCE: TSA

December 19, 2007 10:14 ET

DHS Agencies Announce Enrollment Dates for TWIC in 10 Ports

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - December 19, 2007) - The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced that enrollment in the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) program will begin at 10 more locations in the coming weeks. This program ensures that any individual who has unescorted access to secure areas of port facilities and vessels has received a thorough background check and is not a known security threat.

TWIC enrollment began Oct. 16 at the Port of Wilmington, Del. The addition of these 10 locations will bring the number of fixed enrollment centers open for enrollment to 49. Ultimately, the program will be rolled out to 147 fixed enrollment sites and will vet more than 1 million workers through the rest of 2007 and 2008.

"TWIC is one of the world's most advanced interoperable biometric systems and raises the bar on port security," said the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) Maurine Fanguy, program director for TWIC. "We are off to a strong start with thousands of workers enrolled and credentials issued."

Today, the TSA released specific dates for the following ports:

Joliet, Ill.   Dec. 20, 2007    Huntington, W.Va.          Jan. 16, 2008
Peoria, Ill.   Dec. 20, 2007    International Falls, Minn. Jan. 16, 2008
Memphis, Tenn. Dec. 27, 2007    Morehead City, N.C.        Jan. 16, 2008
Buffalo, N.Y.  Dec. 28, 2007    Ontonagon, Mich.           Jan. 16, 2008
Hilo, Hawaii   Jan.  3, 2008    Port Canaveral, Fla.       Jan. 17, 2008

Workers at these ports, as well as another 39 where enrollment has begun, are able to pre-enroll for TWIC on the TSA Web site (www.tsa.gov/twic). Pre-enrollment speeds up the process by allowing workers to provide biographic information and schedule a time to complete the application process in person. This reduces waiting and in-person enrollment times for each individual.

More information on the TWIC program is available at www.tsa.gov/twic and additional information on port security is available at the U.S. Coast Guard's Homeport site at http://homeport.uscg.mil by clicking on the Maritime Security link.