Security Council Meets at Air Safety Forum

ALPA was by their side, providing MEC Security Committee chairmen and coordinators from the Association’s member airlines with a forum to meet and discuss current challenges and best practices. The Security Council convened during the closed session of the 59th Air Safety Forum to allow council members the opportunity to interact with ALPA Air Safety Organization leadership and conduct their business.

“How do we solve the wide variety of problems that confront us?” asked Capt. Fred Eissler (FedEx Express), ALPA’s Aviation Security chair, during his welcoming remarks. “The key is relationships,” he said, emphasizing the value of working together with other pilot groups as well as our airline industry partners. Eissler later discussed the important connection between the Association’s security structure and the efforts at its 33 member airlines. “The system only works at the national level when it works at the local level,” he commented.

ALPA first vice president and national safety coordinator Capt. Sean Cassidy dovetailed on this subject, talking about the sometimes-clandestine nature of resolving security-related issues and how this can inadvertently hinder the sharing of information. He stressed the need for ALPA’s security chairs to communicate with each other so that we can “better serve our customers,” referring to the Association’s 50,000 members. During the ensuing Q&A session, Eissler and Cassidy talked about the status of secondary barriers, Federal Flight Deck Officer program funding, and the Known Crewmember (KCM) program.

The Security Council meeting was moderated by chair Capt. Robert Hamilton (PSA). The pilots also talked about en route advisements of events at arrival stations as well as the enormous success of the KCM program and the need to fully comply with TSA rules.

In addition, First Officer Wolfgang Koch (Delta), the Security Committee chairman for his pilot group, provided a presentation about useful mobile security apps and their ability to improve situational awareness.