WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-1) and Senator Bob Casey (PA) sent a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Administrator Michael Whitaker calling for the swift implementation of the bipartisan, bicameral Saracini Enhanced Aviation Act, which was signed into law as part of the landmark FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024.

In a joint statement, Congressman Fitzpatrick and Senator Casey said:

Over two decades have passed since September 11th, 2001, and nearly thirteen years since the policy requiring secondary cockpit barriers was introduced in Congress. The families of  9/11 victims have waited far too long for their government to act on requiring these lifesaving barriers. Alongside the indomitable Ellen Saracini, we have fought tirelessly to safeguard our skies and ensure the horrific events of 9/11 are never able to happen again. While we celebrate the monumental achievement of the Saracini Enhanced Aviation Safety Act finally being signed into law, our resolve to secure its swift and effective implementation remains unwavering. The time to act is now; we cannot afford any further delay.”

"I applaud Representative Fitzpatrick and Senator Casey for their efforts to ensure families like my own, directly affected by the tragic events of September 11th, 2001, have a seat at the table where recommendations for a rule on the installation of secondary cockpit barriers will be made,” said Ellen Saracini, widow of Captain Victor Saracini of United Flight 175. “Our voices deserve to be heard and the FAA Administrator now has the authority to guarantee that we are not left out of the decision-making process. I hope that Administrator Whitaker heeds this call from our bipartisan champions in Congress to keep those impacted the most by 9/11 at the forefront of this rulemaking process.”

Section 350(a) requires that within six months of enactment, the Administrator convene an aviation rulemaking committee (the "Committee"). This Committee is tasked with reviewing and developing recommendations for the installation of secondary cockpit barriers on mainstream commercial passenger aircraft, which are not already covered by other regulations or proposed regulations. While this provision provides a statutory deadline for action, it does not prevent the FAA from moving swiftly to implement this critical measure. Consequently, Rep. Fitzpatrick and Senator Casey strongly urge that the process to implement these requirements proceed as quickly and efficiently as possible.

Section 350(b) requires the Administrator to appoint members of the Committee comprised of representatives from mainline air carriers, regional air carriers, aircraft manufacturers, passenger aircraft pilots (represented by a labor group), flight attendants (represented by a labor group), airline passengers, and other stakeholders the Administrator determines appropriate. Pursuant to this, Rep. Fitzpatrick and Senator Casey strongly urge Administrator Whitaker to use his discretionary authority to appoint an additional representative from a key constituency: the families of the victims of September 11th, 2001.

Separately, Section 202 of the FAA Reauthorization Act requires the appointment of an individual to the role of Assistant Administrator for Rulemaking and Regulatory Improvement. Rep. Fitzpatrick and Senator Casey are calling on the FAA to leverage all available resources to ensure that, once the Committee authorized by Section 350 completes its work and makes its recommendations, a rule requiring the installation of secondary cockpit barriers on covered aircraft is promptly proposed and finalized as soon as possible.

Read the full letter here.


The Saracini Enhanced Aviation Safety Act mandates the installation of secondary cockpit barriers in all mainstream commercial passenger aircraft, thereby ensuring the safety of Americans while fortifying our defenses against potential terrorist attacks similar to 9/11.

The Saracini Enhanced Aviation Safety Act was named in honor of Congressman Fitzpatrick’s and Senator Casey’s constituent, Captain Victor Saracini, who tragically lost his life when his plane was hijacked and flown into the World Trade Center on September 11th, 2001.

This pivotal bipartisan, bicameral legislation was signed into law by President Biden on May 16th, 2024, as part of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024.