The Transportation Security Administration is conducting a hiring drive at DFW International Airport and Dallas Love Field as the agency prepares for a major increase in summer air travel this year.
The agency is hosting a job fair this week for the region’s two major commercial airports, offering $500 bonuses and a starting wage of $17.47 an hour, along with pay raises after six months that could bring the annual salary to more than $42,000 a year for full-time workers.
The TSA is looking for about 200 workers at DFW International Airport, which has 14 security checkpoints. The agency wants to add 20 to 30 agents at Dallas Love Field, which has a consolidated checkpoint.
After two years of declining airport traffic due to the COVID-19 pandemic, airlines and airports expect travel to return this year to levels close to those seen before the COVID-19 pandemic. Carriers such as Fort Worth-based American Airlines have even seen leisure passenger numbers surpass pre-pandemic levels in recent months, indicating that summer traveler crowds could be large even with a decrease. the number of business and international passengers.
DFW and Love Field are also busy airports for TSA work. Officers found more than 300 firearms on passengers and in bags at DFW in 2021, the second highest number in the country.
The TSA has had its own challenges over the past two years, first with COVID-19 cases among officers who closed checkpoints. The agency has also been stretched during the holiday season with the highest passenger levels over the past two years combined with an increase in COVID-19 cases with the omicron variant.
Then there is the national labor shortage. TSA officials said DFW Airport and Love Field did not experience staffing shortages, but other airports across the country did.
The TSA has about 50,000 employees nationwide, and agency administrators have been asking the federal government for more help since last summer due to the faster-than-expected rebound in travel and the nationwide struggle to find jobs. workers, according to reports from The Washington Post.
Last year, the agency handled 585 million passengers. DFW Airport, as the primary hub for American Airlines, was the nation’s second-busiest airport in 2021, behind only Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Georgia.
Candidates for the job do not need previous law enforcement experience, according to the TSA. New employees undergo six weeks of paid training, after which they will be eligible for a 5% salary increase when they obtain their transportation security officer certification. TSA employees are eligible for health and retirement benefits.
The TSA Career Fair takes place Tuesday and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Renaissance Dallas North Hotel, 1590 Lyndon B. Johnson Freeway, Dallas.