TSA Precheck Expands to Service Academy Students

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by bearhunter66, Nov 10, 2014.

  1. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=123607

    I wrote a letter to Pistole. Key points:

    I am writing this letter to better understand why this policy would not apply to midshipman attending the United States Merchant Marine Academy. As I am sure you are aware, the United States Merchant Marine Academy is a federal service academy that educates and graduates licensed Merchant Marine officers of exemplary character who serve America’s marine transportation and defense needs in peace and war.

    I noted that the new policy applied to the United States Coast Guard Academy, which is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. In this regard, the United States Merchant Marine Academy is similar as it is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Department of Transportation and not the Department of Defense.

    Similar to the other four (4) Federal Service Academies, every midshipman at the United States Merchant Marine Academy is required to complete Standard Form 86, Questionnaire for National Security Positions, as a criterion for acceptance and enrollment.

    Additionally, and unique to United States Merchant Marine Academy, every midshipman is also required to obtain a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC®). This document, issued by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), is a vital security measure that will ensure individuals who pose a threat do not gain unescorted access to secure areas of the nation’s maritime transportation system.

    I copied my Senators and Congressmen. May also send a copy to RADM Helis. I encourage all current/past/future parents and kids to do the same. KP is often the forgotten academy (remember that sequestration issue last year this time) and we need to sound off.

    BH
     
  2. Freda'sMom

    Freda'sMom Parent

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    I assume the reasoning is the cadets/mids at the other 4 are military academies, with students who are on active duty (and are subject to the UCMJ) while the mids at KP are not?

    Not saying that's correct reasoning to deny KP mids the same perk, but it could explain why.
     
  3. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    From the article, Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr., vice chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff is quoted as follows:

    “My personal thanks go to TSA as they now expand TSA Precheck expedited screening benefits to all United States Service Academy cadets and midshipmen,” Winnefeld added, “recognizing the dedication and commitment of those who step forward to protect this great nation in the future.”

    Maybe he should have said:

    “My personal thanks go to TSA as they now expand TSA Precheck expedited screening benefits to all United States Service Academy cadets and midshipmen,” Winnefeld added, “recognizing the dedication and commitment of those who step forward to protect this great nation in the future, except for the midshipmen who are serving in the United States Merchant Marine Academy".

    I am a little fired up, so forgive me. After the sequestration last year and now this, I feel compelled to get engaged. I watched my son and the other 250 or so plebes get sworn into the US Naval Reserve a few months ago. I know when he goes to sea next year, he could be sailing on a SSO billet (there are mids doing this as we speak). They may not be subject to the UCMJ (yet) but they are attending a US Service Academy and they should be treated the same.

    BTW, your point was a good one in terms of what they may have been thinking.
     
  4. KPEngineer

    KPEngineer Eternal Father ...

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    And how exactly is that? I suggest you may have a misunderstanding of what an "SSO billet" is

    I do agree 100% with your original point; although unless things have changed, I didn't do my SF-86 until senior year prior to commissioning. KP always has, and likely will always continue to get shortchanged when compared to the other service academies.

    You really can't lump USCGA in as a "military" academy either. Since they are all sworn law enforcement officers wouldn't they being "military" violate Posse Comitatus?
     
  5. tankercaptain

    tankercaptain Member

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    He should be more upset that his son spent $135 on a TWIC card then would have to go spend $85 for TSA precheck and have it done at the same facility, by the same people and on the same hardware, software and background check as the TWIC card.
    By the way I've seen USNA mids enjoy TSA precheck for the past year. As long as they had a CAC card they can utilize precheck.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
  6. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    14 U.S.C. 1 states the Coast Guard is, at all times, a branch of the military. Posse Comitatus specifically excludes the Coast Guard, and the National Guard, in state "status". It's probably important to point out that being in DOD is not a defining characteristic of being "in the military." The Army, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard (as the Revenue Marine) and the Navy (kind of) existed before the War Department.

    That took 5 seconds to Google.

    There are four military academies, USCGA, USMA, USNA and USAFA. USMMA is a service academy…. just not a military academy.
     
  7. KPEngineer

    KPEngineer Eternal Father ...

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    Sensitive are we? My post was a bit tongue-in-cheek.
     
  8. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    If it came off as sensitive, it shouldn't have.

    I did pre-Check one…. because the other line was too long… so TSA moved us to recheck… which made me a little concerned with how secure that process really was… but if you every wanted to make sense of a TSA policy…. good luck.
     
  9. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    Thought you all would appreciate this. DOD Official Website....

    http://www.defense.gov/faq/pis/20.html

    Service Academy or Military Academy? DOD seems to class them all the same (Military).

    Reference to SSO billet was that he could be sailing on a warship during 2nd or 3rd class. That isn't happening with cadets and mids from the other Academies.

    Can't speak to Classes prior to '18 but SF86 was required to be turned in I-Day. 2010 version is 127 pages long.

    It isn't about the $$$ for me. It is about KP being treated like the "red headed step child".

    If someone can provide a legitimate reason why a KP mid shouldn't be treated the same, I'll stand down. Example: TSA precheck waiver is reserved only for those subject to the UCMJ.

    Until then, I'll tilt the windmill.

    BH
     
  10. tankercaptain

    tankercaptain Member

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    Sailing on a Navy ship isn't a SSO billet. Also tons of USNA mids and NROTC mids do summer cruise on Navy ships.

    US Code doesn't classify Kings Point as a Military Academy.
    If the KP mids get a CAC card they have a DoD ID number which is the number they use to enter in as their TSA Known Traveler ID.
    KP has been treated differently for 70 years, you might as well start getting used to it.
     
  11. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    Perhaps the use of the word billet was an error.

    My OCD requires me to point out the following:

    The notices indicated that the new policy applied to all service academies. Sloppy at best.

    Secondly, if the policy is designed only to apply to active duty personnel, then state that.

    Are there certain circumstances where a Kings Point mid would be required to have a CAC card?

    BH









    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  12. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Clarification on SF 86, it is a form for applying for a security clearance. Filling a form doesn't equate to getting a security clearance. I don't know when cadets and midshipman actually get get their security clearance.

    All goes back to the legal status of cadet and midshipman.

    Do plebes at the USMMA take some sort of oath on the first day?

    What kind of ID card did you get issued?
     
  13. tankercaptain

    tankercaptain Member

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    u
    I haven't seen a DD form 2 (green reserve ID card) in a long time but if they've changed the DoD ID number from SSN to a real number then they can enter that into their plane ticket as their known traveler ID.

    They might get a CAC card when they do a cruise on a Navy ship, but to do that they'd have to do it on the back slide on base and not through school.

    TWIC Card is pretty much a useless ID.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2014
  14. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    Son was sworn into US Naval Reserve on Acceptance Day.

    He was issued a student ID but the key ID he uses is the TWIC.

    Good point re: SF86.



    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  15. tankercaptain

    tankercaptain Member

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    KP mids are placed in the US Naval Reserve on inactive status. Typically depending on naval science department they get issued a DD form 2 (green ID)
     
  16. MemberLG

    MemberLG Member

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    Don't travel enough so dont care about the TSA pre-check.

    My thought is if inactive reservists qualify for the TSA pre-check, than so should USMMA midshipmen.
     
  17. sheriff3

    sheriff3 Member

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    Do/can contracted ROTC cadets get the same Pre-check option that is being offered to the SA's? All contracted ROTC cadets must have completed an SF-86. The ones that have attended a training school, project GO or CULP have a CAC card and a military ID card. Would seem reasonable the option is extended to ROTC cadets as well.
     
  18. jasperdog

    jasperdog Member

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    Bearhunter: Piling on to TankerCaptain's post - Starting "last/first" and going back through it and your list of issues:

    - USMMA is different and treated differently because it is so. The authorizing law for USMMA defines it differently than the other "military service" academies CFR 46 is much much different in it's language and treatment of pretty much every aspect of things like nominations, appointments, etc. and lest we forget post graduation service commitments. As both an Alumni myself and the parent of a much more recent alumni, there are tons of things I feel that are driven by these differences that are windmills worth tilting at. Whether current mids can basically be trusted travelers or not isn't one of those issues IMO. The discontinuation of classes due to the sequestration and making sure USMMA is treated the same in this regard as the 4 other academies, is indeed worth it as are most items like that (having an active, vibrant Congressional Board of vistiors, etc.) are. Wasting effort on this items distracts from getting the things and attention we need for USMMA.

    As TankerCaptain notes what is needed to get this "perk" is a CAC card and as far as I know USMMA mids don't get those until after graduation when they recieve their commissions. I think that's the same for ROTC cadets and mids as well - who at least in the case of those on scholarship also probably could feel slighted should they so choose to feel that way. Perhaps if we want to their forum we'd find some who feel that way, otherwise maybe they feel that graduating with a four year degree from a great college or university without a large burden of debt is enough of a perk that they don't care if they have to wait 15 minutes in line before they get screened to get on an airplane. Or maybe if its a real big deal for them they spend $85 of their own money to enroll in TSA Pre or $150 to enroll in Global Entry that gets them this privilege as well as expedited Customs and immigration upon reentry to the US...

    And again I emphasize most USMMA students and alumni don't want to be the same as the other academies. We are more than fine being a red headed stepchild for things like free TSAPre, since it means we have and serve a unique mission and have the "options and opportunities" that confer upon graduation that we all tout so much in other aspects here on this forum. Bottom line - tilt away as you please but my suggestion is we should "pick our battles" and we have to take the good and the bad that goes with being "different" if we want USMMA to keep those unique aspects we like.
     
  19. tankercaptain

    tankercaptain Member

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    If you have a CAC card you have a DoD number that you use as your known traveler ID when booking flights which puts the TSA precheck on your boarding pass
     
  20. bearhunter66

    bearhunter66 Member

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    Jasper,
    Points well made. I am the son of a 20yr Marine Officer so I have been accused at times of fighting for every hill. Part of my family DNA...

    This issue I am concerned about is not TSA Pre-check; that is tactical. The strategic problem I care about is the fact that KP is unique but it is not recognized as such. As evidenced by this particular issue:

    a) Vice Chairman of Joint Chiefs referring to policy as apply to "all United States Service Academy cadets and midshipman"

    b) Director of the TSA referring to policy is "the least the agency can do for members of the nation's military and service academies"

    c) A TSA policy that purports to offer "expedited screening to all members of the U.S. Armed Forces, including those serving in the U.S. Coast Guard, Reserves and National Guard"

    Statements like these do not support the uniqueness of KP. Quite the opposite. They imply (state?) that KP is being treated the same when it is clearly not. IMO, that is not a good thing at all. Since the statements are flat out wrong, I feel compelled to point to out. That darn DNA thing again...

    As I previously indicated, provide a solid reason why the policy should not apply to KP mids, properly communicate it, and I'm good to go. KP is unique, so one must take the good with the bad. As you state, a small price to pay at times.

    However, when we let an issue like this go unchecked, meaning when folks "believe" KP is being treated the same when it is not or should be treated the same when it should not, it seems to me to be no different than Congress voting to avert the sequestration impact to the "Academies" and forgetting about KP or when an Advisory Board make recommendations that ignore the fundamental differences of KP's mission.

    Trust this makes sense.

    BH
     

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