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US Customs and Border Protection and Global Entry Disruption a big travel concern

US Customs and Border Protection and Global Entry Disruption a big travel concern

There is currently a shortage of nearly 4,000 Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers nationwide in America. In April, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the authorization of CBP officers – possibly exceeding 2,000 officers – to be voluntarily reassigned to sectors across the southwest border. If these reassignments continue, they could lead to staffing shortages at other critical land ports of entry, medium and small airports, and seaports. Reduced personnel numbers at other ports could threaten CBP’s capacity to carry out critical immigration, trade and health-related inspections ,and to interdict illegal drugs shipments.

With regard to Global Entry program interviews, US Travel Association Executive Vice President for Public Affairs and Policy Tori Barnes issued the following statement on reports that Customs and Border Protection staffing shortages will disrupt this process:

“The American travel community is deeply concerned that Customs and Border Protection staffing shortages will disrupt the Global Entry program, a critical tool for both travel facilitation and travel security.

“Global Entry has been a shining example of effective and innovative post-9/11 policymaking: a program that bolsters security by thoroughly pre-vetting entrants into the U.S., and simultaneously boosts economic activity by streamlining the entry process.

“Interruption of Global Entry interviews is an unsettling sign that resources for Homeland Security functions are not keeping pace with the shifting array of challenges that face the agency’s important work.

“We need a broad and comprehensive national conversation about the reforms and investments that are needed to properly secure our entry points and transportation systems. It’s not just security that’s at stake, but economic growth as well.”

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