Open Access Bases to Require Visitor Passes Again


If you have the pleasure of living on a base where visitors simply show their drivers licenses to get on, or you count on showing yours when you forget your DoD ID card at home, that's about to change.

A new DoD background check system will eventually be used at military installation across the country and will require visitors to go through a special screening beyond just scanning their drivers licenses at the gate. Instead they will need to provide their full name, date of birth and social security numbers and receive a visitor pass.

Not all bases have an open access policy. But some, including Fort Campbell, Ky. and Fort Benning, Ga., had shifted to such a system over the last few years as they phased out issuing DoD car decals.

Fort Benning even closed its visitor centers entirely. An open access policy there made it much simpler for families attending basic training or Ranger School graduations and visiting Sand Hill or the Ranger Training Battalion area to gain access. And officials at the time said it raised no security concerns.

Read my news story about this over on Military.com.

 The gate security procedures at military bases, at least how they are enforced, pretty much run the gamut. Some of our readers said they just flash a nice smile and the guard lets them in. Others said they have to wait at the gate until someone can bring it to them. Still others said they go into the visitors center where their information is run and identity confirmed, or if the center is closed the gate guard does it in his shack.

But with the new system that could be about to end.

While many of us already feel extra safe living on base, some say that the gates bring a false sense of security. Do the new rules make you feel like base will be a safer place?

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