WASHINGTON — Individual border guards still have too much power in yanking FAST cards for some truckers’ liking, but at least now U.S. Customs and Border Protection can tell drivers why.
In the event drivers are denied or revoked from the FAST, SENTRI, NEXUS programs, they will be provided information in writing detailing the reason, CBP announced. The letter will also contain guidance on how to seek additional information, if necessary.
Although there is still no formal appeals process to contest such decisions, drivers or carriers that feel the action was based upon inaccurate information, may contact the local trusted traveler Enrollment Center to schedule an appointment to speak with a supervisor. A list of locations can be found on the Frequent Traveler Programs web site (www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/frequent_traveler — link below).
Calls to the Trusted Traveler Ombudsman should contain supporting information.
Drivers also have a right to view records that CBP may have on them. Copies can be obtained pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), by writing to: U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations, FOIA/Customer Satisfaction Unit, Room 5.5-C, 1300 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington DC, 20229.
However, CBP reminds drivers that the agency often relies on data from other agencies, and its denial or revocation of FAST may have been based upon those records.
The Canadian Trucking Alliance has been arguing for years against CBP’s “one size fits all” enforcement policy for FAST drivers.
CTA says far too many drivers are instantly losing their FAST credentials for minor clerical errors with no recourse.
“(The association) hopes that CBP can begin work on a more fair an equitable penalty schedule that will not see drivers lose their cards for life over simple piece count issues,” CTA wrote in a letter to the agency earlier this year.
At least this is a start.
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