December 19, 2007 11:00 ET

New York/New Jersey Port Workers Begin Enrollment for Federal Port Security Credential

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - December 19, 2007) - Today, port and longshore workers, truckers and others operating within the Port of New York/New Jersey will begin to enroll in the Department of Homeland Security's Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) program. The program's goal is to ensure 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 security threat.

"The start of enrollment today is one more step in our effort to prevent persons who are a threat from gaining access to secure areas of port facilities," said Maurine Fanguy, the TWIC program director for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). "We appreciate the support of our partners at the Port of New York/New Jersey for helping to make one of the world's most advanced interoperable biometric systems a reality."

More than 30 ports have begun enrollment since the program began Oct. 16. Ultimately, fixed enrollment centers will be in place at 147 ports along with mobile enrollment centers at dozens of other locations as needed.

"TWIC will be a crucial part of our multi-layered risk-based approach to maritime security," said Port of New York/New Jersey Capt. Bob O'Brien, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Sector New York. "It will strengthen security at the port and at thousands of other maritime-related facilities and vessels." Coast Guard Sector New York has worked closely with the maritime industry, including waterfront facility operators, licensed mariners and port representatives, over the past several years in preparation for the TWIC enrollment roll-out.

Workers at the Port of New York/New Jersey are able to pre-enroll for TWIC online at or the Coast Guard's Homeport site, Pre-enrolling speeds up the process by allowing workers to provide biographic information and schedule a time to complete the application process in person. This eliminates waiting at enrollment centers and reduces the time it takes to enroll each individual.

Three fixed enrollment centers will be opening in the coming weeks. They include:

Dec. 19, 2007
NY Container Terminal-Howland Hook Marine Terminal
241 Western Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10303-1103

Dec. 27, 2007
Staten Island Ferry (Whitehall Ferry Terminal)
4 South Street; Room 210
New York, NY 10004-1940

Jan. 4, 2008
Northern New Jersey / Bergen County
89 Leuning Street; Suite G
South Hackensack, NJ 07606-1345

Hours of operation are Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. - 6 p.m.