The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to adopt a new policy on security background checks that alarming among some of its scientists. Described in a communications plan shared with the agency’s senior staff. To effectively bar the agency hiring as employees or contractors of foreign nationals. The employees should reside in the United States for a total of 3 out of the last 5 years.
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The new revisions based on government-wide security policy. Interpreting those rules more strictly than some other agencies. The change is effective to hires after 1 October. It is not applicable for existing employees. The new rule affects about 50 people a year most of them postdoctoral fellows in short-term positions.
Some scientist’s distress the change preventing the agencies from bringing in foreign talent. The change focuses on the rules for receiving standardized government identity cards that allows access to agency facilities, data and computer systems.
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The Communications plan, describes revisions for 13-year-old policy known as the Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12 (HSPD-12) that requires secure and reliable forms of identification for all government employees. But federal agencies denied allowed to hire ineligible foreign nationals at their discretion. To issue alternate ID cards until requirement of 3-year residency. At that point, they can receive an OPM background check for the PIV card.
To get Personal Identity Verification (PIV) card, new hire should go through background check performed by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM). That office has said it can perform a background check only if the candidate has 3 years of U.S. residency.
A new HSPD-12 policy, issued in January by the Department of Health and Human Services, which includes FDA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Institutes of Health.
The revised HHS policy no longer allows FDA to assume the risk of hiring ineligible candidates. The phase-in process foreign nationals start an FDA job in fiscal year 2017 ends 30 September can still get an alternate ID card with restricted local access to FDA facilities and certain computer systems.
FDA appears to be tougher standards than required under the government-wide directive or HHS policy. HHS agencies can still bring foreign nationals using alternative access cards
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An FDA spokesperson acknowledged, but said FDA’s responsibility working with companies to regulate drug and food safety apply special requirements. She said we differ from the other HHS operating division. Possession of trade secrets and confidential commercial data valued in the billions of dollars.