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Tag: Ebola

Boston Globe Editorial: Border Patrol Needs More Reforms, Not More Money

By The Boston Globe
Editorial Board

The ebola crisis has sparked no small number of irrational statements, but one of the least sensible is the call to invest heavily in US border enforcement. President Obama’s highly anticipated plans for executive action on immigration, announced Thursday, included boosting border security. A more secure border, the thinking goes, should be the policy priority, not creating pathways to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

But there’s a problem with that reasoning: The United States already has piled additional billions into border security, creating Customs and Border Protection, which is now the largest law enforcement agency in the country, with 60,000 agents and staff.

The number of border agents has nearly doubled in 10 years. In a compelling 10,000-word exposé in Politico magazine, writer Garrett M. Graff presents a portrait of an overstaffed, dysfunctional Border Patrol, a force within Customs and Border Protection that is home to rogue agents and cloaked in secrecy. Many of the agency’s problems are attributable to its rapid growth, much of it originally funded in George W. Bush’s second term and maintained afterward.

A surge in funding would exacerbate the issues plaguing the border patrol, which placed too many inexperienced agents in the field without proper training, and continues to struggle with internal misconduct and corruption cases.

Politico’s Graff layers in many chilling points about the patrol and its officers, whose green uniforms prompted Washington officials to dub the agency the Green Monster. It is likely one of the US government’s deadliest agencies, with 46 fatal shootings in the past 10 years.

To read more click here.

Homeland Security Announces Flight Restrictions to Stem Ebola Spread

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

To stem the spread of Ebola, the Department of Homeland Security has limited the number of flights coming from affected countries in West Africa, NPR reports.

“Today, I am announcing that all passengers arriving in the United States whose travel originates in Liberia, Sierra Leone or Guinea will be required to fly into one of the five airports that have the enhanced screening and additional resources in place,” Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said in a statement.

Beginning today, passengers will be subject to “secondary screening and added protocols, including having their temperature taken, before they can be admitted into the United States,” the statement said.

The airports are New York’s JFK; Newark, N.J.; Washington, D.C.’s Dulles; Atlanta; and Chicago O’Hare.

“We are working closely with the airlines to implement these restrictions with minimal travel disruption,” Johnson said on Tuesday. “If not already handled by the airlines, the few impacted travelers should contact the airlines for rebooking, as needed.”

TSA Agent on Leave After Patting Down Ebola Patient at Cleveland Airport

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A TSA agent who patted down an Ebola patient at a Cleveland airport is on paid leave as a precaution, 19 Action News reports.

The agency said the agent performed a routine-pat-down of Amber Vinson at Hopkins Airport.

Vinson is the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S.

“Out of an abundance of caution, a Cleveland Hopkins International Airport (CLE) Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Officer who conducted a routine pat-down of a traveler later reported to be infected with Ebola consulted with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC),” the TSA said. “The employee is not reporting any symptoms. The employee was instructed by CDC to self-monitor over the next few days, as a precautionary measure. TSA also has assigned its chief medical officer to our employee to provide additional support.

No Cleveland TSA officer came in direct contact with the infected traveler, as all pat-downs are completed while employees are wearing disposable medical gloves.”

Other Stories of Interest


FBI Director Comey Says No Evidence of Terrorists Trying to Weaponize Ebola

FBI Director James Comey

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

FBI Director James Comey said Thursday that there’s no evidence that terrorists are trying to weaponize Ebola, The Hill reports.

Comey had a one-word response when asked whether there was credible evidence of an Ebola threat from terrorists: “No.”

Comey didn’t elaborate after a speech at the Brookings Institute.

Some Republicans and others have expressed fear that terrorists have considered Ebola as a possible weapon.

President Obama’s administration has come under fire for its response to Ebola after a second U.S. heath worker contracted the virus.

Other Stories of Interest


TSA Cleans Up Checkpoints After Nurse with Ebola Travels Through Cleveland Airport

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A passenger with the Ebola virus traveled through the security checkpoints at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, prompting TSA to disinfect the areas, the Plain Dealer reports.

The patient, Amber Joy Vinson, walked through the central security checkpoint while en route to Dallas/Fort Worth.

Individual lanes to the checkpoints will be closed for cleanup, the TSA announced.

“It’s nothing official,” TSA spokesman Mark Howell said, noting that the precaution wasn’t undertaken at the direction of the Centers for Disease Control. “It’s just something that our folks wanted to do, in an overabundance of caution.”

The TSA discovered which checkpoints Vinson went through using closed circuit television system.

Officials also are cleaning the jet in which the patient was a passenger.

Vinson is the second Texas nurse to be diagnosed with Ebola.

Other Stories of Interest

 


Homeland Security Gets Involved to Stop Spread of Ebola by Screening Passengers

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security agents are being trained to screen travelers for Ebola after they return from West Africa, the New York Daily News reports.

The advanced screenings will take place at five major airports: John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York; Newark Liberty International Airport; Dulles International Airport outside of Washington, D.C.; Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport; and Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport

Travelers returning from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will be subject to the screenings. About 150 people return from those countries every day.

“These five airports, as you may know, are the destination of 94% of individuals who travel to the United States from the three countries that are currently affected by Ebola right now,” Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, said during a briefing Wednesday afternoon.

Roughly 150 travelers who have been in the three counties