TSA employees working unpaid because of the government shutdown are quitting — and this could create a 'massive security risk' for travelers

TSA checkpoint

  • Employees of the Transportation Security Administration
    (TSA)
    have been working unpaid since the US federal government
    shutdown
    began on December 22.
  • TSA workers’ union head Hydrick Thomas said in a post
    on the organization’s website that some workers have already quit,
    while many others are considering quitting. 
  • The union says this could create a “massive security
    risk” for travelers. 
  • A TSA spokesperson told Politico that 500 new officers
    were hired on Sunday and 300 more are expected to start the next
    pay period. 

Employees of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
have been working unpaid since the US federal government shutdown
began on December 22.

And now, according to their union boss, many TSA workers are
quitting their jobs — or at least thinking about it. 

“Every day I’m getting calls from my members about their extreme
financial hardships and need for a paycheck,” TSA union president

Hydrick Thomas said in a post on the organization’s website
.
“Some of them have already quit and many are considering quitting
the federal workforce because of this shutdown.”

“The loss of officers, while we’re already shorthanded, will
create a massive security risk for American travelers since we
don’t have enough trainees in the pipeline or the ability to
process new hires,” Thomas continued.

It’s unclear how many TSA workers have quit. Neither the union
nor TSA officials were immediately available for comment. 

However, TSA spokesperson Michael Bilello told
Politico
that approximately 500 new officers were hired on
Sunday and “300 more expected to start next pay period.”

Read more:
TSA airport screeners have been working without pay during the
shutdown and now many don’t have money to get to work
.

This
news follows reports last week that many of the agency’s employees
have been calling out
en masse during the shutdown, something
Thomas attributes to the lack of finances to get to work. 

“TSA employees aren’t calling out intentionally,” union
president Hydrick Thomas told Business Insider on Friday. “They are
calling out because they don’t have the funds to make it work.”

“TSA workers aren’t highly paid very much, they live paycheck to
paycheck and they depend on that paycheck at the end of the month,”
he added.

Read more:
Delta, United, and JetBlue pilots are warning that flying will
become more dangerous as the government shutdown continues
.

The mean annual wage for TSA employees was about $40,960, or
$19.69 per hour, as of May 2017, according to the
US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

On Friday, a TSA spokesperson told Business Insider that the
agency’s screeners have not yet missed a paycheck. The spokesperson
went on to say that should the shutdown end by the middle of this
week, their next paycheck on January 11 will also be processed on
time.

SEE ALSO: We
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Source: FS – All-Travel destinations-News
TSA employees working unpaid because of the government shutdown are quitting — and this could create a 'massive security risk' for travelers