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Tag: airport screening

Airports Brace for Safety Issues As TSA Employees React to Government Shutdown

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

A government shutdown over border safety could soon cause serious security problems at airports, where more than 51,000 TSA employees began working without pay Friday.

The TSA reported a 55% increase in employees calling in sick Thursday, and some airport screeners have already quit, the agency’s spokesman Michael Bilello told Bloomberg.

The TSA is responding to staff shortages by planning to close some security checkpoints at airports nationwide beginning this weekend.

Airport authorities are expressing fear that the shutdown could soon worsen security screening.

“We’re very concerned that the current situation with government employees going without pay is unsustainable in the long term,” Christopher Bidwell, a senior vice president at the Airports Council International-North America in Washington, told Bloomberg. “We certainly have to be mindful of the potential for cascading operational impacts.”

Airports also are bracing for flight delays.

The group that represents more than 10,000 air-traffic controllers, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, filed a lawsuit Friday, alleging it’s against the law to force employees to work without pay.

Elderly Women Complain of TSA Screening at JFK Airport

file photo

By Danny Fenster
ticklethwire.com

Two elderly women claimed this week that TSA employees, during private screenings at John F. Kennedy International Airport, embarrassed them by asking them to lower their pants and expose private items to the officers, reports WPLG. One claims she was made to lower her pants and underwear so her back brace could be inspected; the other said she was made to lower her waste and show officers her colostomy bag.

The TSA says the officers followed proper procedures in both cases, the station reported.

But with the aging US population, such searched may become even more common, according to the WPLG report. Many prosthetics and medical devices cannot go through regular scans.

“You have pacemakers, you have artificial hips, you have artificial knees,” Rep. Peter King, a New York Republican and chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee said, according to the station.”As we get older and we keep ourselves together, it’s going to take more and more surgery. There’s going to be more and more medical improvements, but that can create what appears to be a security issue.”

Prosthetics can set off metal detectors, while bags and catheters create bulges in people’s clothing that security officials are likely to question.

The TSA says it continues to try and tailor screening procedure for different demographics. The agency has formed an advisory committee, with 70 disability groups, to adapt screening techniques.

To read more click here.

Airport Screening Machines to Get Less Personal

file photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Good news for those who think the Transportation Security Administration has gone too far in its efforts to screen airline passengers.

The Associated Press reports that TSA is installing news technology at some airports that will show a generic outline of s peson’s body instead of showing an image of the naked body.

AP reported that the new technology will be used in 40 airports including Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Miami and Newark.

The news service said TSA will eventually use the technology at other airports as well.

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