Friday, December 3, 2010

TSA Fights Back

Blowing the dust off this place after almost a year of inactivity to present to you, complete and unedited, the most recent edition of a publication called The TSO Voice, which I picked up at work (at General Mitchell Int'l Airport) while waiting for the employee shuttle. For reference, the flyer states that this is a weekly publication, although this edition is dated November 22, 2010.

AFGE Local Vice President in Memphis Appears on ABC News to Discuss Enhanced Pat-Downs

The largest and most trusted labor union at the Transportation Security Administration is running an ad in USA Today on Nov. 23 to alert airline passengers of new screening procedures and remind them that Transportation Security Officers are there to do their job and protect the flying public against threats and terrorism.

"The Transportation Security Officers who staff the checkpoints are frontline DHS employees. they are there to do a job that protects us all," says the ad paid for by the American Federation of Government Employees. "They have been charged with implementing the new policies with one goal in mind -- the safety of the flying public. Our nation's TSOs deserve our respect and our thanks."

The USA Today ad is one of AFGE's latest attempts to safeguard TSOs, who have been at the receiving end of passengers' anger and frustration following the implementation of TSA's new screening policies that include full body scans and enhanced pat-downs.

AFGE on ABC World News

AFGE Local 555 Executive Vice President Valyria Lewis appeared on ABC World News last Friday to discuss the pat-down situation. Lewis told ABC News that TSOs understand passengers' concerns, but TSA's top priority is to protect the flying public. Watch Lewis on ABC News

Because a high volume of passengers is expected during the holiday season, AFGE last week called on TSA to provide the travelers with educational pamphlets that spell out what passengers can expect and what their rights are.

"TSA must do a better job explaining these measures to the flying public," said AFGE president John Gage. "This absence of information has resulted in a backlash against the character and professionalism of TSOs."

AFGE strongly believes that TSA should work with local authorities to ensure that adequate numbers of law enforcement personnel are deployed to the airports to deal with anyone looking to disrupt the security process or assault a TSO in the line of duty.

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