Readout of Secretary Napolitano's Remarks at The American Hotel & Lodging Association Legislative Action Summit

Press Release

By:  Janet Napolitano
Date: April 24, 2013
Location: Washington, DC

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today delivered remarks at the American Hotel & Lodging Association Legislative Action Summit, highlighting the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) priorities, including the need to reform and modernize our nation's immigration laws, and efforts to facilitate legitimate travel and trade.

"The hotel and lodging industry and DHS have a shared desire to ensure that the United States remains open and welcoming to business and tourists -- from across the country and around the world -- who support our nation's economy," said Secretary Napolitano. "We want to make sure that travel to, from, and within the United States is not only safe and secure, but also efficient."

During her remarks, Secretary Napolitano discussed the need for commonsense immigration reform and highlighted the Administration's efforts to secure the nation's borders. Over the past four years this Administration has dedicated historic levels of personnel, technology, and resources to the Southwest border, and undertaken an unprecedented effort to transform our nation's immigration enforcement systems into one that focuses on public safety, border security, and the integrity of the immigration system, and expedites legal travel and trade at our nation's borders and ports of entry.

Secretary Napolitano also highlighted the Department's work to facilitate legitimate travel. By expanding trusted traveler programs like U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) Global Entry program, DHS is working to increase travel and tourism in the United States, while maintaining the highest standards of security.

Currently available at 34 U.S. airports and 10 preclearance locations, Global Entry streamlines CBP processing for trusted travelers through biometric identification and reduces average wait times by 70 percent, with more than 75 percent of travelers using Global Entry processed in less than a minute. More than 1.5 million trusted travelers now receive Global Entry benefits, and these travelers have used its automated kiosks to expedite their entry more than four million times since the program's inception.