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Transportation labor endorses House transit and rail security bill

(The Transportation Trades Deparment issued the following news release on July 13.)

WASHINGTON -- The following statement was issued today by Edward Wytkind, President of the AFL-CIO's Transportation Trades Department.

"Transportation workers and their unions strongly support the Secure TRAINS Act of 2005 introduced today in the U.S. House of Representatives. Last week's tragic bombings in London were yet another reminder of the urgent need to invest billions in the security of our transit systems and commuter rail and Amtrak networks.

"We particularly support the bill's call for mandatory training to help front-line workers identify and respond to security threats. An Amalgamated Transit Union survey of its members showed 80 percent had received no additional training since 9/11. We also strongly support the bill's whistleblower provisions, as workers should be able to identify and speak out on safety and security lapses without fear of harassment or retribution. No one should have to choose between homeland security and job security.

"We cannot allow our government's 'all talk, no action' approach to transit and rail security to continue one day longer. We spend six-tenths of a penny per passenger on transit security, compared to $9.16 per airline passenger. The Secure TRAINS Act of 2005 is a badly-needed step to reversing our dangerous inattention to vulnerabilities in our transportation system."

TTD represents 35 member unions in the aviation, rail, transit, trucking, highway, longshore, maritime and related industries. For more information, visit www.ttd.org

Thursday, July 14, 2005

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