From the TSA Administrator: A look back at my second year
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From the TSA Administrator: A look back at my second year

[music]>> Hi, this is
Administrator Pekoske and I just wanted to take
the opportunity today to talk to you about
the past two years in TSA. When I first
came into this job, one of the things that I thought
was important for us to do is kind of establish a path
ahead for us as an agency, and so we worked very hard over the first several months
of my tenure to put together
a strategy for TSA. Our strategy lays out those three major
lines of effort: Improve Security,
Commit To Our People, and Accelerate Action, and also lays out
the three core values that we’ve established which are Integrity, Respect,
and Commitment. To support that strategy, we developed
an Administrator’s Intent which was the document
that I use to drive effort within TSA,
and some of the things you have already seen manifest
themselves in that intent. One of the most
visible ones, to me, is the focus on our people. We have looked very hard
at how we provide better support to our people, better career
development for our people. We’ve put in place things like
the TSO career progression, we put in place
now a two-tier evaluation system for Transportation
Security Officers which, in my view, will simplify
our evaluation process and make it more objective
rather than subjective. We’ve been on a significant
effort in TSA to raise the global bar in
aviation security. I travel quite a bit
internationally talking to our key international
partners We have well over 170 last point
of departure airports which are airports that leave
a foreign location and come directly to the
United States. And our effort is to improve
their security overall so that when flights are over-flying
US airspace with US citizens on-board,
coming to a US airport, the security of those passengers
on that aircraft is dealt with in a better manner than it had been in the past. When I look the Accelerate Action
piece of our strategic plan I think one of the best examples
is the infusion of technology in our system. I think it’s
important to put the right tools in the hands of the men and women
that we’re asking to perform this very critical security function
in TSA. So, we’re deploying now our CT
X-ray technology at screening checkpoints. We’re
also developing and deploying our credential authentication
technology at screening checkpoints. And we have a number of other technology
improvements in the works. We’ve also invested,
significantly improved our canine program
at airports around the country. Right now, we run
the largest canine program in the United States, and that represents
a lot of work and a lot of dedicated effort on
the part of our canine handlers and on the part
of our training staff at the Canine Training Center
down in San Antonio, Texas, and the staff here
at headquarters. And, you know,
I have great hope for continued good work that the canine program
is going to do to not only provide security
in terms of detection but also to provide
a deterrent effect in the airport environments and the surface transportation
environments that they operate. I think we can
look back collectively and be very proud
of where we brought TSA over the past couple of years
and really where it’s going.

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