The Rutherford Institute has given guidance and advice for parents concerned about the possibility of their children being forced to undergo invasive, traumatic searches by agents of the Transportation Security Administration. This comes just months after a 13-year-old girl was allegedly groped by a TSA agent during a search at DCA.
For parents concerned about the possibility of their children being forced to undergo invasive or even traumatic physical examinations by agents of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), The Rutherford Institute – a non-profit civil liberties body – has released guidelines on how guardians can protect their young ones from any potential harm while traveling.
This guidance comes just a few months after a 13-year-old girl was allegedly groped by a TSA agent during a physical search at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). Published in a brief entitled Parents’ Rights to Protect Their Children from TSA Patdowns, the institute advises parents of their rights in relation to any potential search and screening procedures conducted by the TSA.
These include the right “to be advised of the reason their child is being subjected to any enhanced security screening, such as pat-down searches,” as well as the right “to speak with their child before they are subjected to a pat-down or other enhanced security measures and let the child know what to expect and offer reassurance.”
The institute also advises that, even during the TSA screening process, those passengers undergoing a search do not automatically waive their right to privacy as set out under the Fourth Amendment.
“Parents have a fundamental right to the care, custody and control of their children. As such, parents and legal guardians have a right to stand guard over underaged children and protect them from any attempts by government officials, including agents of the Transportation Security Administration, to separate minors from their parents in order to subject children to unwarranted, overtly intimate treatment at the hands of strangers during airport screenings,” the institute advises.