Port and longshore workers, truckers and others at Port Canaveral today 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.
Close to 12,000 workers from the port region are expected to enroll. Nationwide, more than 1 million workers with unescorted access to secure areas are expected to apply for TWIC.
"The start of enrollment 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, TWIC program director for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). "We appreciate the support of our partners at Port Canaveral for helping to make one of the world's most advanced interoperable biometric systems a reality."
Port Canaveral; Portland, Ore.; and Kahului, Hawaii all begin enrollment today, bringing the total number of enrollment sites to 52 nationwide. 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 the transportation workers' key for rapid and reliable access to port facilities in Port Canaveral," said Coast Guard Capt. of the Port Paul Thomas, who is responsible for enforcing TWIC requirements. "We encourage workers to enroll early, ensuring their ability to access the port after the enforcement date has been set."
A tremendous amount of planning and work has been done collectively by TSA, the Coast Guard, port owners/operators, employee groups and other stakeholders in preparation for this critical phase of the TWIC program to assure a successful and smooth transition.
"Canaveral Port Authority is working with the Coast Guard and TSA to make the transition to TWIC as smooth as possible for our 200 tenants and the nearly 12,000 people who will be required to obtain the new federal credential in order to continue to conduct their business at Port Canaveral," said Stan Payne, chief executive officer, Port Canaveral.
Workers at Port Canaveral are able to pre-enroll for TWIC online at www.tsa.gov/twic or the Coast Guard's Homeport site, http://homeport.uscg.mil. 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.
The TWIC Enrollment Center is located at 707 Mullet Road, Suites 117 and 118, Cape Canaveral, 32920. The hours of operation are Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Port Canaveral is the second busiest cruise port in the world and an increasingly important port for cargo. It offers more recreational opportunities for the public than the other 13 deepwater ports combined. In the most current economic impact report, Port Canaveral contributed 34,000 jobs and more than $1.5 billion to Brevard County. Regionally, the port's impact contributed 50,000 jobs and $2.3 billion to the central Florida economy. Statewide, Port Canaveral affects 90,000 jobs with a total economic impact of nearly $4 billion.