- Category: Bulletin
U.S. NEXUS/FAST Enrollment Centers to Re-Open November 29
November 15, 2021
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection is pleased to announce that the NEXUS and U.S./Canada FAST enrollment centers in the United States will reopen on November 29, 2021. It should be noted, however, that the NEXUS and FAST enrollment centers in Canada will continue to be closed until further notice.
Starting today, conditionally approved applicants may schedule interviews at available NEXUS and U.S./Canada FAST enrollment centers in the United States. Appointments must be booked through the Trusted Traveler portal: https://ttp.dhs.gov/ and will have dates available starting November 29.
Applicants entering the U.S. to complete their interview must meet all applicable travel requirements: Fact Sheet: Guidance for Travelers to Enter the U.S. at Land Ports of Entry and Ferry Terminals | Homeland Security (dhs.gov)
CBP asks all applicants to be patient with the system as there is large backlog of applications to be processed by a limited number of open enrollment centers. In order to prioritize new applicants needing interviews, CBP is asking existing NEXUS and FAST members to refrain from booking an appointment at this time. However, existing members are encouraged to renew their membership before their expiry date on their cards to maintain their membership privileges until able to complete their interviews at a later time.
NEXUS is a program run jointly between the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Customs and Border Protection. It is designed to speed up border crossings for low-risk, pre-approved travelers into Canada and the United States. FAST is a joint program between the CBSA and CBP that enhances border and trade security while making cross-border commercial shipments simpler and subject to fewer delays.
Interested travelers can apply through the Trusted Traveler Programs website. The non-refundable application fee for a five-year FAST membership is $50 and applications must be submitted online. Once the applicant successfully passes a background check, a CBP officer will conduct an interview with the applicant at select locations in the U.S. to make a final eligibility determination.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.
- Category: Bulletin
Are your employees properly trained for working safely with the COVID-19 reality?
Covid-19 has been a major part of our lives, day in and day out since government shutdowns and restrictions took place in Mid March of this year. We have been living with this in every aspect of our lives for over 7 months, and with the throws of the second wave upon us, it is not going away anytime soon. We as a society have learned a lot since the early days of the pandemic as the science has evolved. We know the simple things that we can do to protect ourselves and others, like wear masks, physically distance, wash our hands, clean and disinfect frequently, just to name a few. Unfortunately, what we have also seen, is a large amount of misleading information. This misinformation is not only shared on social media but has been spread around by some world leaders and on some mainstream media outlets. This has led to a large amount of confusion and made it so it is not always easy for people to trust or understand what steps they should truly take to reduce the spread of this virus.
While employers have done their best to ensure they take the steps required to protect their employee’s and visitors from contact with the virus, it is not always easy to ensure your entire workforce understands how the virus itself works and why the steps that the company has put in place need to be followed. Governments have done a great job providing guidance documents and best practices for workplaces to follow, and this has been invaluable to employers. For a program to have the best rate of success however, a true understanding of the virus is needed by those who are required to follow the guidance. It is no different than hiring a driver and asking them to drive your truck safely and efficiently. In order for that to occur, we can’t just hire a driver who has a proper license and send them out on their own. When they come on board, we spend time to mentor them, refine their skills and teach them the specific skills needed for handling the equipment, freight, and customers. Sending them out and telling them to be safe will never work if we do not provide the means and knowledge to achieve this ask. With this in mind, how many companies have been able to provide training to all of their employees on COVID-19 and how the virus works? My guess is this is a low percentage, and through no fault of your own. With the virus being so new, the training programs, for the most part, have yet to be developed. In addition, companies have been working hard to ensure they keep up with and follow ever changing government guidelines and regulations, not to mention just trying to keep the lights on and employees on the payroll. This has been a challenging and unprecedented time for everyone, with no playback or history to refer to as to how to handle this situation.
With this in mind, the PMTC Board of Directors has agreed to partner with Bluedrop Learning Networks, a Canadian-based globally recognized e-learning innovator to bring a proven COVID-19 Work Safe training course to our membership, and for our extended carrier and stakeholder groups.
Bluedrop’s interactive online training course, which launched with great success by the Province of Newfoundland & Labrador in July, was developed under the guidance of several noted national experts, including Canada’s former Deputy Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. David Mowat. The course has now been tailored specifically for the trucking/shipping/freight management industry.
The results of the training are equally impressive. An online survey of over 200 course registrants was recently conducted to assess its impact. Prior to completing the course, only 49% of survey participants passed a knowledge check on COVID-19 best practices. After completing the course, the pass rate increased to 95%. Overall, participants showed a 53% increase in workplace COVID-19 safety knowledge after completing the course. 81% of those completing the course said that they now felt ‘very confident’
in their ability to keep their co-workers and customers safe from COVID-19. Finally, 95% of survey respondents stated they would encourage their co-workers to complete this training.
The COVID-19 Work Safe Course has since been adopted by WCB agencies and employer groups in Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Manitoba with more to be announced shortly. Bluedrop CEO Emad Rizkalla recently showcased the solution at the 22nd World Congress on Health and Safety at Work as an example of global innovation in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the next few weeks the course will become available on the PMTC website at www.pmtc.ca, and we will provide more information at that time. The PMTC will receive zero revenue from this course offer, nor will Bluedrop. The reason for this partnership is to make the course available for as many companies and employees as possible, to ensure we all have the tools to reduce the spread of COVID-19 to keep all of us safe!
In the meantime, for more information on the training or the impact that it's having, feel free to visit the SkillsPass Resource Page, and you can also register for the free 30-minute overview webinar on October 29, 2020 at 1pm EST. You can register HERE
Private Motor Truck Council of Canada
225 Main Street East
Unit #5, Milton, On