Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Here We Go Again... Amy Alkon

*** Update - 12/6/2012  ***

Many of our readers have  asked if our officers are required to give their full name when asked by a passenger. Hopefully I can provide some clarification.

If asked, our officers are only required to provide their last name and rank. This information is printed on the nameplate on every officer’s uniform. Furthermore, supervisors, managers, and customer support managers are not required to provide the officer’s full name.

As far as the photo ID badge on the officer’s uniform, this is a badge that all airport employees must wear. It’s called a Security Identification Display Area (SIDA) badge. Basically, it’s a badge that allows employees access to non-public areas. One side of the badge has the employee’s full name on it. Many officers choose to wear their SIDA badges so their full name is not visible. vs. a name badge. This is permissible.

If at any time you need to file a kudos or complaint regarding one of our officers, the only information you need for us to be able to recognize an employee or resolve an issue is:

Last Name/Rank/Date/Time/Location

Our officers have a right to privacy, and TSA has the responsibility of protecting our officers from the harassment that could result from revealing their full names.  


Here we go again…  TSA seems to be a frequent and a convenient subject on Amy Alkon's blog. The writer’s language characterization towards TSA and our employees is offensive to say the least. Name calling, insults, the whole gamut...

In her latest screening incident, she’s angry because a supervisor wouldn’t give her the name of an officer who had just screened her. An officer who – by the way -  by all accounts other than Ms. Alkon’s, did her job by the book. It is more likely that she wanted this information so she could post the officer’s name on her blog as she’s done before with other incidents. In fact, she named and publicly accused one of our officers of rape after a routine pat-down in an earlier allegation.

Ms. Alkon says all sorts of things in this post, but what Ms. Alkon doesn’t tell you is that from the moment she entered our checkpoint, she began making statements such as “TSA gets paid to molest passengers and touch their private areas.” Does that sound like somebody who wants to get through the checkpoint smoothly? No, it sounds like somebody who makes a living by agitating situations and writing about them.

Also missing in the details, Ms. Alkon wasn’t selected for a pat-down as she states in this post. She opted out of advanced imaging technology (body scanner). It’s acceptable to opt out, but the standard protocol when a passenger opts out is that they receive a pat-down  not a free pass through security. If you read Amy’s comments, she knows this. As Ms. Alkon continued to make a scene, the checkpoint supervisor stated he would have to call airport police if she did not cooperate with the screening process.

We understand that not everybody likes or agrees with TSA’s policies and procedures. Part of what makes this country great is that we can openly complain on blogs such as this one, but I think it’s only fair that the blogger in question should be fair and accurate about what they write about and also consider the privacy of the individuals involved. After all, these individuals are doing the job the way they’ve been trained to do it. They show up to work daily with the intent of protecting our Nation’s transportation network.

I can assure you of one thing, an infinitesimal number of our employees know of Ms. Alkon. I can also assure you that reoccurring allegations like hers seem to be more self perpetuated rather than based upon reality and do nothing but detract from the mission at hand. 

If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.