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Press Releases

January 13, 2014

Cruise Ship Safety and Security Improving Two Years After Costa Concordia Tragedy

(WASHINGTON) - Today, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report on cruise ship safety and security and the reporting of crime on these vessels. The report, requested by Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA), and Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), is released on the two year anniversary of the grounding of the cruise ship Costa Concordia, which resulted in 32 deaths. The safety and security of cruise … Continue Reading


January 06, 2014

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December 20, 2013

Thompson Statement on Secret Service Report

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) report on the U.S. Secret Service (USSS). The report, entitled "Adequacy of USSS Efforts to Identify, Mitigate, and Address Instances of Misconduct and Inappropriate Behavior" (OIG-14-20) details 14 recommendations to improve USSS processes for addressing misconduct in the wake … Continue Reading


December 19, 2013

Thompson Statement on NSA Review Group Report

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on the report issued by the Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technology: I applaud the service of the Review Group on Intelligence and Surveillance Technologies. The report issued on Wednesday outlines several recommendations and it's my hope that Congress takes notice and acts quickly to amend Section 215 of the Patriot Act and enacts … Continue Reading


December 12, 2013

Thompson: DHS Financial Audit a Step in the Right Direction

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement regarding news that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has received its first clean, unqualified financial audit. However, the audit also found material weaknesses with DHS' internal control over financial reporting. DHS is currently responsible for managing more than $60 billion every year to carry out its mission. I would like to applaud DHS on … Continue Reading


November 13, 2013

TSA Behavior Detection Program Should be Defunded

(WASHINGTON) - Today, the Government Accountability Office released its much anticipated report on the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques (SPOT) program. The report entitled "Aviation Security: TSA Should Limit Future Funding for Behavior Detection Activities" (GAO-14-159) found, again, that the available evidence and data show that this program cannot be proven effective. Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the … Continue Reading


November 13, 2013

Thompson Statement: Hearing on ACA Security/Privacy

(WASHINGTON) - Today, House Committee on Homeland Security Ranking Member Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) delivered the following remarks for the full Committee hearing entitled Cyber Side-Effects: How Secure is the Personal Information Entered into the Flawed Healthcare.gov?: I understand that this hearing will discuss the Department of Homeland Security's role in the Affordable Care Act. The role played by DHS is two-fold. First, the Department is responsible for verifying that anyone … Continue Reading


October 17, 2013

Thompson Statement on DHS Secretary Nomination

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement on news that the President intends to nominate Mr. Jeh Johnson as Secretary of Homeland Security: I would like to congratulate Mr. Jeh Johnson on his nomination by the President to be the fourth Secretary of Homeland Security. His experience in counterterrorism and cybersecurity will be an asset to the nation. Having served in the Department of Defense, … Continue Reading


September 26, 2013

Report: TSA Needs Proper Strategy for Body Scanner Roll Out

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) report on the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) deployment of advanced imaging technology (AIT) - also known as full body scanners - to our airports' security checkpoints. The IG found that while TSA followed a deployment schedule, it did not develop a … Continue Reading


September 18, 2013

DHS Must Measure and Track Its Recruitment

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on recruiting and employment at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The report, entitled "DHS Recruiting and Hiring: DHS Is Generally Filling Mission-Critical Positions, but Could Better Track Costs of Coordinated Recruiting Efforts" (GAO-13-742) found that while DHS and some of its … Continue Reading


September 13, 2013

DHS Needs Centralized Social Media Policy

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) report on social media at DHS entitled "DHS Uses Social Media To Enhance Information Sharing and Mission Operations, But Additional Oversight and Guidance Are Needed" (OIG-13-115): "In recent years, social media have become useful and efficient tools for the government to … Continue Reading


September 13, 2013

Report: DHS Needs to Fix and Improve Radio Program

(WASHINGTON) - The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) released a report on radio management at DHS entitled "DHS Needs to Manage Its Radio Communication Program Better" (OIG-13-113). The report found that DHS's management of its radio communications program is ineffective. DHS currently manages approximately 200,000 pieces of radio equipment and 3,500 radio infrastructure sites - together valued at $1 billion. Most of this equipment is held by CBP, ICE, USSS … Continue Reading


September 12, 2013

Report: TSA Progressing on Mass Transit Security

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General (DHS OIG) report on mass transit security entitled "Research and Development Efforts to Secure Rail Transit Systems" (OIG-13-111). The report by the DHS IG shows that TSA has successfully created a series of small and efficient working groups to address security gaps in our nation's … Continue Reading


September 11, 2013

Affordable Care Act Data Hub is Ready and Secure

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, received a letter from the Department of Health and Human Services' (HHS) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) stating that it has, ahead of schedule, completed testing of and received security authorization for the Federal Services Data Hub which will serve as a tool to assist the public in applying for health care under the Affordable Care Act. Privacy and security … Continue Reading


September 11, 2013

Thompson Statement on the 12th Anniversary of September 11

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement commemorating the twelve anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks: Today we come together to commemorate and honor those who lost their lives twelve years ago. While our nation has rebuilt, the pain of that day is still with us as it was on that day. While our nation was forever changed, we remain dedicated to our core values and beliefs … Continue Reading


September 09, 2013

TSA Announces Expansion of Expedited Screening

(WASHINGTON) - Today, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced that more passengers will be eligible for expedited security screening through TSA's Trusted Traveler program by the end of the year. Through this update to the program, TSA will determine if passengers are of low risk based on variety of factors including information they already provide when purchasing their tickets. Passengers who are chosen for expedited screening will be able to pass through screening … Continue Reading


August 02, 2013

Report: TSA Worker Credentialing Office Needs Improvement

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report he requested on the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) Adjudication Center - which performs security background checks for Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) applicants, among other programs. TWIC cards allow individuals to gain access to secure areas of our … Continue Reading


August 01, 2013

Thompson Commends Obama for Chemical Facility Security Executive Order

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement regarding news that President Obama issued an Executive Order on Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security this morning outlining a national effort to identify chemical facilities, which pose a safety and security risk to citizens, communities, and national security: The President should be commended for taking urgent action on this critical issue and … Continue Reading


July 30, 2013

Report: TSA Must Apply Misconduct Policies Uniformly

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement in response to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report entitled "Transportation Security: TSA Could Strengthen Monitoring of Allegations of Employee Misconduct (GAO-13-624)" on how employee misconduct is handled by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). "Over a decade after being established, it is frustrating that TSA still does not have … Continue Reading


July 19, 2013

Thompson Statement on TSA PreCheck Announcement

(WASHINGTON) - Today, Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, released the below statement regarding news from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that it will expand its Trusted Traveler program, known as PreCheck. Members of the general public who enroll in PreCheck are expected to benefit from expedited screening procedures. PreCheck enrollment centers will start opening in the fall of 2013 and will charge $85 for PreCheck screening … Continue Reading