Senator Calls for Utility Plant Worker Background Checks

Jason Morris

(Reuters) – Sen. Charles Schumer said on Sunday he would introduce legislation requiring major utility plants to run background checks on employees to help prevent security threats against power facilities.

Citing a recent U.S. Department of Homeland Security report that found insider sabotage at electric, gas, and water utilities was a significant threat to U.S. national security, Schumer said al Qaeda was known to be recruiting extremists to infiltrate and work in sensitive areas such as utilities.

“Power plants and utilities present a tempting and potentially catastrophic target to extremists who are bent on wreaking havoc on the United States,” Schumer said.

“Thorough background checks on all workers with access to the most sensitive areas of these operations are a must,” he said, calling the DHS report “a wake-up call that we must ensure those with access to our most critical infrastructure — and our power supplies — are not compromised by extremist influences.”

Currently only nuclear power plants are required to conduct FBI background checks on employees with unescorted access to facilities.

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Jason Morris

President & Chief Operating Officer at EmployeeScreenIQ
A veteran screening and risk management professional, Jason Morris founded EmployeeScreenIQ in 1999 and acts as the company’s chief operating officer and president. Morris is a frequent speaker delivering captivating, interactive discussions on background checks, global screening, recruitment and staffing. He educates audiences in best practice initiatives as they relate to organizational employment screening programs. Morris has been quoted in numerous business and industry publications including The Wall Street Journal, MSNBC.com, USA Today, New York Times, among others. He is also a licensed private investigator in the states of Ohio, Illinois, New Jersey, Texas, Arizona and Nevada.
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  • George

    Can’t find the bill but I know it was passed as you can see from my letters from early 2012