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TSA begins local hiring initiative

Photo by Heather Middleton

Photo by Heather Middleton

By M.J. Subiria Arauz

msubiria@news-daily.com

The approaching completion of the Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal is the catalyst for the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) local hiring initiative at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, according to the TSA federal security director for Atlanta.

"The need of officers exists because of the upcoming opening of the Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal," said Mary Leftridge Byrd, during a press conference, at the airport.

Byrd said TSA began its initiative on Tuesday, and is looking to hire about 200 part-time transportation security officers by early fall. This will allow time to train and certify the officers. "The numbers [of hires] haven't been determined and our request is still pending," she said.

"We are looking for hard-working professionals, who have a desire to protect the traveling public," she added.

Part-time officers will receive a starting wage of $14.59 per hour, and can work a maximum of 25 hours a week, she said. The new hires will be eligible for retirement, a paid annual vacation, life insurance, health insurance and sick leave, she explained.

People interested should apply online by visiting, www.usajobs.gov, said Byrd.

According to Hartsfield-Jackson officials, the international terminal will open in the spring of 2012.

Byrd said there will be six security lanes at the international terminal, which will be staffed by new and experienced transportation security officers. TSA's operations will remain the same at the terminal, she explained.

Candidates must meet various requirements for the open positions, including that they be a U.S. citizen, or national, with proficiency in English; obtain a high school diploma or equivalent; and have the ability to lift and carry baggage weighing up to 70 pounds, said Byrd.

The federal security director said candidates must pass a background check, including a criminal check, and drug screening.

For more information about TSA, visit www.tsa.gov.