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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

I Have a Beef with the TSA

By JC Leahy

I flew Delta Airlines out of Baltimore Washington International Airport on October 7.   At 7:30 a.m.  I went to the TSA security checkpoint at Gate C.  The first TSA employee I encountered was a middle-aged black woman.  I smiled and gave her a very pleasant "good morning."  She kept a flat-aspect face -- no expression -- and acted like I hadn't said a word.  I thought that was rude.  I thought that for a government employee responsible for public interface, such a cold demeanor was irksome, to say the least!!   I told her that she was being needlessly rude to ignore a simple, pleasant greeting.  I asked for her name or badge number.  She dismissively refused to give either.  I then asked to speak with her supervisor, who advised me that TSA employees are "no longer" required to give their name or badge number.  However, if I had a complaint,  I could fill out a complaint form. I accepted the form and took it with me to fill out later.  When I got around to filling it out, it asked for the "TSA Employee [name/badge number]  (if known)"   On the other side of the form, the instructions reiterated, "It would be helpful to provide the following and badge number of the TSA employee." Well how would I know THAT if the employee isn't required to tell me his name or badge number???  Even police officers are required to tell you AT LEAST their badge number so that the public -- their employers -- can complain about their mis-behavior.  For the TSA to think they above this kind of accountability is beyond unreasonable.

That's what I think.


"The Transportation Security Administration is unable to respond to your inquiry with the information you have provided. If you wish to pursue your request for information, please contact us with a detailed explanation of the information you are seeking."  Oh!!  It sounds like they need a name or badge number!!!!!


Anonymous said...

I believe that the TSA employee's supervisor lied to you when you were told that they are no longer required to give their badge number. Maybe they aren't required to give their name, but some other official form of ID must be available. It's easy enough for the supervisor to lie and then offer a complaint form to you, to get you, a customer, "off their backs". Rudeness and disrespect abound, at every level. It is unfortunate that too many people feel entitled to behave poorly. -- Susan McBride

Anonymous said...

If you had a phone camera you could have taken her picture. i learned a long time ago that conversations must be witnessed. a pen shaped voice recorder is handy.