SFO screeners given citizenship deadline

Thursday May 23, 2002


SAN FRANCISCO — Screeners at San Francisco International airport who are not U.S. citizens will have until September to obtain citizenship. 

Officials at SFO announced Tuesday that federal officials had allowed airport officials to delay in switching to federal security screeners, buying time for 720 security personnel without citizenship. 

As part of the federal transportation security law, Congress requires that all screeners be federal employees and citizens by Nov. 19. Screener advocates have gotten help from Mayor Willie Brown and congressional representatives to apply for citizenship so they can keep their jobs. 

“I’m very interested in doing everything I can to work with all the screeners to make sure we provide them with every opportunity to meet the federal standards,” the airport’s federal security director, Edward Gomez, said. 

Airport officials hope to retain existing screeners because of their experience, an airport spokesman said.