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WZVN-TV: 5 TSA employees removed from duty @ Southwest Florida International (RSW)

WZVN-TV: 5 TSA employees removed from duty @ Southwest Florida International (RSW)

Old Jun 4, 12, 3:46 pm
  #16  
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MSNBC: Dozens of TSA workers fired, suspended for screening violations

Joe Myxter at MSNBC adds some new details:

MSNBC:
Dozens of TSA workers fired, suspended for screening violations


A short quote:
The Transportation Security Administration fired five employees and suspended 38 others [emphasis added] on Friday for violating security procedures at Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers, Fla.
I think the 38 suspensions had not been mentioned before. In addition:
The security workers violated protocol by willfully not performing random checks, TSA found in an investigation. The violations occurred over a two-month period in 2011, TSA spokesman David Castelveter told msnbc.com.
The incidents happened in 2011, so it has taken TSA at least six months to take action.
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Old Jun 4, 12, 5:32 pm
  #17  
 
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On NBC Nightly news right now...lead story.
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Old Jun 4, 12, 8:01 pm
  #18  
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It would be great if the TSO who hired on last year and reported on this was actually a roving 'secret shopper' sent to evaluate from the inside what actually happens at an airport.

I wonder if inside reports of misconduct by fellow TSOs that are submitted to the 'system' are given any more attention that reports from pax, or if they are ignored as well.

Unfortunately, this almost certainly means stepped up 'random' screenings for all of us pax.
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Old Jun 5, 12, 7:33 am
  #19  
 
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Originally Posted by chollie View Post
Unfortunately, this almost certainly means stepped up 'random' screenings for all of us pax.
Guaranteed.

It also means that any situation where "judgement" is called for will be met with the most restrictive, passenger-unfriendly decision possible.
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Old Jun 5, 12, 9:57 am
  #20  
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I would really really like to think that the TSO who allegedly 'blew the whistle' was a 'secret shopper'.

Perhaps if every TSO suspected every other TSO of watching and being ready to 'see something, say something', we'd start to see a bit of self-policing in the ranks.

The discipline on this should go all the way to the top. It would also be interesting to see how the actual numbers fall out after 6 months - sounds like a real house-cleaning now, but not so impressive if those fired are reinstated (like the BUF BDO was) and those who are suspended successfully challenge their suspensions. I wonder how many of the HNL workers are still on the job. One of them was a manager who was previously fired. He was a supervisor when he was originally fired. He sued and was rehired as a manager and given $500k back pay. Others who successfully appealed their firings included (no surprise) two supervisors and a lead - guess the buck doesn't really stop at the top with TSA.

In the meantime, I wonder what it is costing taxpayers to cover bringing in screeners from other airports to cover the shortage of workers? If I read it correctly, none of the suspended workers are suspended immediately - they have time to challenge (successfully) their suspensions. Also not clear is whether or not these suspensions are with or without pay.

Last edited by chollie; Jun 5, 12 at 10:06 am
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Old Jun 5, 12, 6:16 pm
  #21  
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Spokesperson: 1 of the largest disciplinary actions TSA has taken in its 10yr history

Gannett's Ledyard King provides some more interesting details in this article in the Federal Times:

Federal Times:
TSA disciplines 43 screeners over lax security

By Ledyard King, Gannett Washing Bureau
Last Updated:June 5, 2012


A short quote:
The 43, a combination of front-line screeners and supervisors, represent about 15 percent of the roughly 280 TSA employees at the airport. The number of workers involved makes it one of the largest disciplinary actions TSA has taken in its 10-year history, TSA spokesman David Castelveter confirmed.
Click the link and read the full article - it includes an explanation from Billie Vincent, a former security director for the Federal Aviation Administration, explaining why TSA's failing to do the random checks was a security failure.
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Old Jun 6, 12, 9:43 am
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
Gannett's Ledyard King provides some more interesting details in this article in the Federal Times:

Federal Times:
TSA disciplines 43 screeners over lax security

By Ledyard King, Gannett Washing Bureau
Last Updated:June 5, 2012


A short quote:
The 43, a combination of front-line screeners and supervisors, represent about 15 percent of the roughly 280 TSA employees at the airport. The number of workers involved makes it one of the largest disciplinary actions TSA has taken in its 10-year history, TSA spokesman David Castelveter confirmed.




Click the link and read the full article - it includes an explanation from Billie Vincent, a former security director for the Federal Aviation Administration, explaining why TSA's failing to do the random checks was a security failure.
My favorite quote from the article:

Castelveter said it's important to note that every person who flew through the airport was screened.

"It's the random secondary [check] that did not happen," he said. "At no time was a traveler's safety at risk and there was no impact on flight operations."

So why do we have random secondary checks?
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Old Jun 6, 12, 2:24 pm
  #23  
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"The security workers violated protocol by willfully not performing random checks,"

You cannot screen less than zero or more than 100%, and the number groped must be a whole number, but zero is a valid random number.

I know, such math is too high level for TSA management to understand.
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Old Jun 6, 12, 4:52 pm
  #24  
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Here's another good article:

WPEC-TV CBS12 News:
3 TSA workers at Fort Myers airport fired, disciplined

Tuesday, June 5 2012, 06:45 EDT


A short quote, showing how Rep. Mica is using this incident to publicize himself:

But Florida Congressman John Mica has written a letter to TSA administrator demanding more answers.

Rep. John Mica: If necessary we'll subpoena the documents and find out who knew about what, when and why it took a year, a year to take, disciplinary action.

This is just the latest embarrassment for the TSA. Last year, 48 screeners in Honolulu were either fired or suspended for improperly checking bags. In Newark, 10 workers were punished accused of stealing or sleeping on the job. Last week in San Diego, a man fresh out of jail boarded a flight to Los Angeles - without a ticket - before getting caught.

Rep. John Mica: TSA cries out for reform, totally out of control. This nonsense with TSA has to stop.

The TSA made similar mass firings in the past year in cities such as Honolulu and Charlotte, North Carolina.
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Old Jun 6, 12, 5:08 pm
  #25  
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WINK: Punished are 15% of all TSA employees at RSW; Suspensions are for 2-weeks.

Three articles from WINK News Now:

WINK News Now:
TSA disciplines dozens of workers at SWFL International

Jun 04, 2012 at 10:42 PM


and

WINK News Now:
Fort Myers TSA workers fired, disciplined

Jun 05, 2012 at 1:04 PM

A short quote, showing that these 43 workers are not just a few bad apples:
The 43 disciplined workers, a combination of front-line screeners and supervisors, represent about 15 percent of the roughly 280 TSA employees at Southwest Florida International Airport.

and

WINK News Now:
Official: TSA replacement workers in place at RSW

Jun 06, 2012 at 10:20 AM

A short quote, that describes the suspension punishment:
A spokesperson for the TSA emailed us this statement: "Those proposed for removal or suspension will have seven days to reply. The suspensions will be two weeks. We have brought in employees from other airports to cover so that there will be no affect on operations."
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Old Jun 6, 12, 5:24 pm
  #26  
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
Three articles from WINK News Now:

WINK News Now:
TSA disciplines dozens of workers at SWFL International

Jun 04, 2012 at 10:42 PM


and

WINK News Now:
Fort Myers TSA workers fired, disciplined

Jun 05, 2012 at 1:04 PM

A short quote, showing that these 43 workers are not just a few bad apples:
The 43 disciplined workers, a combination of front-line screeners and supervisors, represent about 15 percent of the roughly 280 TSA employees at Southwest Florida International Airport.

and

WINK News Now:
Official: TSA replacement workers in place at RSW

Jun 06, 2012 at 10:20 AM

A short quote, that describes the suspension punishment:
A spokesperson for the TSA emailed us this statement: "Those proposed for removal or suspension will have seven days to reply. The suspensions will be two weeks. We have brought in employees from other airports to cover so that there will be no affect on operations."
I would like to see the TSA spokesperson tell us what effect the cost of temporary TSOs from other airports will have on the taxpayer's wallet.
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Old Jun 6, 12, 8:17 pm
  #27  
 
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15% of the screeners at one airport in no way reflect upon the other 85% who worked side-by-side with them and either didn't know or didn't care that they weren't doing their jobs...

On the other hand, I have to say, I have a LOT more sympathy for these people who were, in essence, doing exactly what I've been wanting for nearly two years - not victimizing people at random by subjecting them to invasive and abusive screening methodologies without warrant, probable cause, or articulable suspicion.

As cynical as I am, I have to wonder how many of these "random" screenings were skipped due to laziness or apathy, and how many of them were skipped because the screeners actually have a conscience, and it visited them in the middle of the night and taught them the true meaning of the words "freedom", "liberty", and "dignity".
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Old Jun 20, 12, 6:20 pm
  #28  
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Fox4Now: Union fighting suspension, because workers were simply following orders

Fox 4 Now News is reporting that "union officials are now fighting the punishment, saying nearly 20 of those workers were simply following orders of their supervisors":

Fox 4 Now News:
TSA workers challenging suspensions at RSW airport

CREATED 5:11 PM


My prediction is that the union will win because TSA has publicly announced that it had taken adverse action against its RSW supervisors.
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Old Jun 20, 12, 8:57 pm
  #29  
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
Fox 4 Now News is reporting that "union officials are now fighting the punishment, saying nearly 20 of those workers were simply following orders of their supervisors":

Fox 4 Now News:
TSA workers challenging suspensions at RSW airport

CREATED 5:11 PM


My prediction is that the union will win because TSA has publicly announced that it had taken adverse action against its RSW supervisors.
I'm sorry but the" I'm just following orders is a crock" as I can see the prosecution asking questions like the following to/of the TSO's/defense

If you were ordered to jump off a bridge, would you?

If you were ordered to rob a bank, would you?

If you were ordered to lie, would you?

Oh and one more question-do you know the meaning of "you to the left and you to right?"
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Old Jun 21, 12, 9:00 am
  #30  
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Originally Posted by RatherBeOnATrain View Post
"TSA holds all of its employees to the highest professional and ethical standards," said TSA spokesperson Sari Koshetz in a statement, "and has zero tolerance for misconduct in the workplace."
Sari "zero tolerance for misconduct" Koshetz was the TSA spokesperson who was threatening mainstream media about not covering the viral YouTube video showing that the nude-o-scopes are competely worthless:

TSA Out of Our Pants:
BREAKING: TSA Threatens Mainstream Media Not To Cover Story

March 8, 2012
I guess the TSA definition of "misconduct in the workplace" is limited to "letting anyone not working for the TSA find out about people not doing their jobs..."
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