The International Brotherhood of Teamsters has announced its opposition to the American Trucking Associations (ATA) proposal to Congress requesting direct access to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) databases in order to conduct criminal background checks on port drivers and dockworkers.
Under its proposal, the ATA would serve as a criminal background check clearinghouse for its members. It would provide the names and fingerprints of its members' employees to the FBI. The bureau would conduct background checks, and then provide the ATA with the results. Through this arrangement, the ATA and its member employers could have unfettered access to sensitive information, including information concerning an employee's past wholly irrelevant to seaport security.
The Teamsters would support a government agency like the Coast Guard to serve as a clearinghouse for employers requesting background checks. A single government agency clearinghouse would also help avoid burdensome requirements of maintaining multiple identifications. The Teamsters will submit detailed testimony and comments to be included in the Subcommittee's record and will testify at any future hearings regarding port drivers.