TSA director under fire from travelers and lawmakers
WASHINGTON — “As soon as you mention TSA, a light bulb goes off and people start venting their anger,” said House Homeland Security Subcommittee Chairman and Republican Mike Rogers. He was questioning TSA Administrator John Pistole over accounts of the lack of professionalism on the part of TSA officials and the organization’s ineffectiveness.
Pistole responded by saying, “With over 630-million people a year, we are not going to have 100% customer satisfaction where every single person believes they received the best possible security screening.”
He pointed out that only 7% of the calls the TSA took were complaints.
However, the headlines tell a different story.
At the Southwest Florida International Airport last week, five TSA workers were fired and 38 more were suspended for not performing any random screenings last year.
In New York City, many people are concerned after two separate incidents at JFK International Airport.
One incident, which happened just a few days ago, involved a Swiss Army knife being detected in security. Yet, the passenger made it through the checkpoint, and on the plane with the knife.
The other incident, which happened before the Swiss Army knife incident, involved a six-inch knife that nearly made it through security. These incidents have some travelers in the Big Apple questioning the TSA’s ability to do its job.
“I don’t know if they’re actually checking for the right things,” said Mos. “I love that they’re so worried about taking my toothpaste or shaving cream, but a six inch knife can get through security.”
Pistole has said a new program will be tested that will be less invasive for travelers; it’s a measure that will detect behaviors, and it focuses on suspicious behaviors. They include nervousness and eye contact. He also says that the new measure could be one of the best ways to detect threats.