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Old Mar 6, 08, 2:42 pm   #1
 
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My first truly retaliatory TSA experience!!!



Just WOW. I am quite livid right now, so kindly indulge me. Sorry in advance that this is such a long post...

I just experienced a truly retaliatory assault from a TSO going through the B terminal (elite line, even) at PHL. I am just so angry right now. The only things that give me solace are posting here to a (I hope!) sympathetic audience and knowing that this is likely the best job the pathetic TSO will ever have.

So, let's begin.

I handed my ID to the TSO (we'll call her "O") and she began her thorough investigation. She said, "Remove your glasses" and I did (sunglasses). (I had forgotten they were still on my face.) When she finished her check, I took my passport and boarding pass from her and walked over to the belt to begin my process. I heard her snap to my traveling partner who was behind me, "Oh no she di'in't just snap those out my hand!" I knew I was going to get a retaliatory. My friend told me after we both got through the line that she immediately got on her walkie talkie and said something to the supervisor.

I am in the line pushing things down toward the X-ray machine and I looked around to see O huffing toward the guy on the other side of the WTMD. She said something to him and he made a point to look right at me. I knew that was it. Cattle chute, here I come.

Before I even walked through the WTMD, I knew what was going to be happening and I said to my friend that he should watch the games begin. The TSO who checked my ID, O, huffed over to me in the glass box and told me that I was supposed to let her know what bags were mine. I did and then she barked that I should step into the screening area. Please let me make you aware that I did not alarm the machine. *sigh*

Is it normal for an ID checker to check a person's ID and then ALSO give them the secondary?????

She was an absolute c-word to me and was absolutely taking pleasure in her secondary. I have never in my life been so completely felt up by anyone before. I was shocked. Oh, and did I mention that at least 4 other TSOs were just standing around were watching this whole thing with smiles on their simple faces?? Something that O asked me that was unacceptable (IMHO) was if I had any medical devices or implants. I told her that whether I do or do not is not her business and she snapped, "I just want a yes or no answer!" I said, "Well, you won't be getting one."

During the whole feel-up procedure, she was WAY too thorough. I mean, listen, I am not the type to be easily offended. Really I am not, but CRIPES what the hell was she doing? I DIDN'T ALARM so I asked her why she was doing such a thorough job. She kept smiling and laughing softly to herself and she was clearly taking pleasure in what she was doing.

I looked behind me and spied a woman and I asked if she was a sup and she said yes. I told her that I wanted to speak with her. O finally completed her exam and said that she was finished. Then I got to chat with the sup who I'll call "E."

E was even more of a peach than O was. I told her that I wanted a complaint form and she said, "I need your drivers license and your boarding pass." I told her that she did not need that information in order to give me a complaint form. She huffed away and came back with a paper and a phone number to call. I asked for her badge number and name, but she told me that if I didn't give her MY information she wouldn't give me HER information. I said, "Okay, thanks, E, badge number 12345." And then I walked away.

I guess they don't think that people exist who can remember names and badge numbers without writing them down immediately. Well, I can. I have them both written down so that I can write my complaint letter.

Can someone PLEASE help me to figure out the best way to write this letter??? I am so angry that I can't exactly compose it right now. Will writing this letter yield anything whatsoever?? Or should I just forget it and be thankful that I was born with the smarts to get a real job?

Comments?

***sigh***

I would have given my right butt cheek to have Spiff there with me.

At least I didn't give in to the sup's request for my personal info. Grrrrrr....

If it makes any difference, I am a female. I am also a Chairmans Preferred on US, so I am no newbie to travel.

(Oh, I apologize for any typos or spelling errors. I am honked off right now. I am about to get on a plane, but I'll be checking back in here as soon as I get to the hotel.)
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Last edited by honeytoes; Mar 6, 08 at 2:50 pm.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 2:46 pm   #2
 
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When I'm in the kind of mood you're in, I sit right down and write the letter I want. Then I wait 48 hours and read it. Sometimes I make changes to ensure it is professional and not personal, sometimes I don't. I tend to be as objective as possible while still being specific about what I thought was done incorrectly.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 3:00 pm   #3
 
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Whoa, if I read that clearly--you got a retaliatory screening because you snapped the ID/passport/BP from the ID checker unintentionally?

I'm so sorry for what you went through. You should contact the FSD, TSA HQ, and airport management.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 3:10 pm   #4
 
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Did you consider filing a police complaint for groping you? If she was getting as frisky with you are you allude to sounds like criminal complaint time.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 3:15 pm   #5
 
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But we've been assured numerous times here that there is no such thing as a retalitatory secondary or having screeners conspire to give one.

I would echo the suggestions of previous posters to write down everything you remember now while it's still fresh then leave it for 24 hours. Revise everything down to the facts and then revise again in 24 hours and mail off to everyone you can think of.

If you think this was more than the usual swab-everything-in-sight and you were being assaulted I wouldn't let it go easily. That thing working at the checkpoint has probably groped many more people and you won't be the last victim.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 3:29 pm   #6
 
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Please post a copy of your complaint on the TSA blog site (www.tsa.gov/blog). Many of their senior officials have posted that there are no "retaliatory secondaries." Going public on that site will get the attention of TSA management -- more so than a complaint which they will ignore -- and your report will erode what little credibility they have left.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:05 pm   #7
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FliesWay2Much View Post
Please post a copy of your complaint on the TSA blog site (www.tsa.gov/blog). Many of their senior officials have posted that there are no "retaliatory secondaries." Going public on that site will get the attention of TSA management -- more so than a complaint which they will ignore -- and your report will erode what little credibility they have left.
Doubt that will ever make the blog.... but worth a shot I guess.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:09 pm   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honeytoes View Post
I would have given my right butt cheek
Careful ..l. anything you "give" at a TSA checkpoint probably won't be seen again.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:18 pm   #9
 
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If that happened to me I would immediately ask for a true LEO and say that you were just sexually assualted. End of story.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:36 pm   #10
 
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"Something that O asked me that was unacceptable (IMHO) was if I had any medical devices or implants. I told her that whether I do or do not is not her business and she snapped, "I just want a yes or no answer!" I said, "Well, you won't be getting one."

If she was doing a hand held wand search then that is a required question to ask by the officer. Well, she shoudl have said "metal implants". But yeah, that's a question that is supposed to be asked when wanding so it was nothing unusual for a hand held wand search.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:48 pm   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honeytoes View Post
I would have given my right butt cheek to have Spiff there with me.
I wish I'd have been there too. You'd have seen flames coming off the complaint form.

Please fill it out and send it in. Also please call in the complaint to the TSA "hot"line 1-866-289-9673

Also, please describe the harassment in detail and send in a letter to your elected representatives. Ask them to overhaul or eliminate the TSA.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:59 pm   #12
 
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wow that really sucks a big one after reading near every post the last few days, i am now more ashamed to be part of this hell hole organization than before. you do not have to give your info when you ask for a complaint card, next time i would tell them to go f*** themselves. unfortunately it is only going to get worse. the "standards" with every new hire class get lower and lower. i have been with the TSA since day one. we used to have a lot of great people who cared about the job. now there are only a few of us left. even though it is my employer, i hope to see it disbanded.

sorry if this is incoherent but i have been up since 3am (another great benifit you get when working for the TSA)
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:59 pm   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JakiChan View Post
...I would immediately ask for a true LEO and say that you were just sexually assaulted...
Exactly my thought. I saw this happen to a co-worker at a SEA checkpoint shortly after 9/11 and it was clearly sexual assault by an abusive security officer.

If 9/11 operators can get fired for hanging up on children whose parents are dying, TSA officers should get fired for assaulting and abusing the public. You should see if the PHL authorities can pull the surveillance video of your incident as proof of your story.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 4:59 pm   #14
 
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It seems shockingly and blatantly retaliatory to let the "offended" TSA employee be the one who does the secondary. I wasn't there, I wasn't felt up, and I'm not even female, yet I feel offended by your experience!!!

And these animals get away with it.

All the nice TSA'ers - yes many really are polite and smile and try to do a good job - it all just goes into the trash when there is such a blatant abuse of power. And they are so untouchable. The standard lack of complaint forms, attempts to hide identity...

My sympathies to the OP.
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Old Mar 6, 08, 5:15 pm   #15
 
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Next time (I hope there isn't one) while they are feeling you just fart.
Would be priceless.

Ciao,
FH
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