Well I was wondering when this was going to happen. In case some of you may not know, the TSA management at Dulles International Airport decided to mark screeners whom were unable to come to work during the past two months record breaking snow storm AWOL. AWOL or absence with out leave is a very serious charge to have against you if you are a screener. If you have this on your record, your TSA “career” is basically over. With this marked against you, a screener will always be passed over for promotions and advancement within the TSA. This is a very piss poor policy as it is never applied across the board for everyone. Management loves to abuse this power as I have seen it abused many times at CVG.
From what I have read it looks like Dulles management is being held accountable for their actions, because they did not follow their own procedures for granting leave (imagine that). All screeners who missed work because of the storm are now being granted leave instead of AWOL. Other airports should take note.
I’m not sure why but most of TSA management believe they are untouchable. They feel they can do whatever they want at any given time. They continue to treat screeners as if they are somehow beneath them. They lack the basic managerial skill to figure out a plan for a snow storm that they knew was on the way, so they take out their aggravation on the screeners. These are the same managers who are supposed to make the big decisions in the event of a terrorist attack (makes you feel real safe doesn’t it). Hopefully who ever made the decision to give screeners AWOL was fired. They have no business being in the position they were given.
Well everyone, here is another of our fine TSA employees hard at work ounce again. Apparently TSA analyst Douglas Duchak though it would be great idea to introduce a logic bomb into a TSA network before he was terminated. The target specifically were systems that handled the “No Fly List”. From what I have been reading it was a failure and Duchak was arrested.
I would like to point out these are the type of people the TSA continues to hire on a daily basis. This person had access to peoples vital information and committed a criminal act. We are lucky this was a low risk attempt because the “No Fly List” in itself is pointless. But imagine if this person decide to steal your private information such as your social security number. The results could be disastrous. These people who are hired by such low standards have open access to our information and are allowed to basically do whatever they want. As tax payers we deserve better than this.
Screeners who work for the TSA have many reason to dislike their employer, mostly stemming from the abuse by their own management who enforce inconsistent policies. One such policy is the requirement that screeners must provide a doctors note when you are ill. This is one of the most inconsistent and argued policies management likes to enforce. The policy is this: If a screener misses more than two days due to an illness they are required to provide a doctors note. That in itself is fair enough and was never really an issue. The problem is that the managers want the doctor’s note to state the diagnosis and prognosis of the persons illness, so they can determine for themselves if they will approve the leave. This is the part most people have a problem with. They wanted screeners to voluntarily give them access to their private medical records. Now I can understand doing this if the illness would not allow a screener to perform their functions in the future, but this was normally not the case. This is nothing more than an abuse of their position used to intimidate screeners. A manager would inform a screener they must provide this information or they will be marked AWOL (Absent Without Leave) which can destroy a screeners “career”. I talked to several physicians about this and was told it would be a huge violation for them to provide this information with out the patients consent.
Now I for one never allowed them to intimidate me with this policy. It is well know that the TSA openly discriminates against its employees and allowing them access to this information would only provide them with more ammunition. There is also the issue that the TSA and especially CVG, has the nasty habit of “misplacing a persons paperwork”, it seems to disappear into the ineptness that is the TSA operations center. I have actually asked managers if there was some kind of void that would mysteriously suck our paper work into oblivion. This happens nation wide. Why should a screener be forced to provide this information, it’s only going to get misplaced or posted on the internet just like the super secret SOP a few months back .
One last thing I would like to talk about is the inconsistent way this policy is enforced. The TSA basically works on the principal of “Who you know and Who you blow”. It is the same way with this policy. There are only certain Screeners who are forced to provide this information while others are able to skate by free and clear. These are normally the other “yes men” in the organization. The Screeners who bust their ass everyday are persecuted by the managers at every opportunity. This is just another reason TSA management needs to be held accountable for their actions.
It seems to be one story after another lately for the TSA. It appears a screener from LAX was arrested for child pornography. A screener Bill Alfaro was accused of having 1500 videos of children on his home computer. This is the second recorded arrest in two weeks of a screener involved with children.
This has to make Americans wonder how these people are getting employed. TSA officials claim there is no way for them to know about a person’s personality based on their background check and that it could happen with any organization. There is a small part of that which is true but what gets me is the TSA does make any attempt to stop these people from gaining employment. As it stands now the Tsa has lowered its standards so far that a person is not required to have a high school education. Their turnover rate is so high, they will take anyone. This is one of two main factors, the second being piss poor management, that makes the Tsa what it is today.
There need to be a change and needs to happen now. The Tsa needs to first treat their employees with respect and as professionals. This simple task alone will greatly reduce turn over and improve morale. The second thing they need to do is raise their standards to that of a professional organization. It really is that simple, if current management can not accept this then they need to be let go.
For some reason the Tsa management believe we as Americans will allow ourselves and our children to be screened by criminals. They refuse to step out of their Washington offices to see how things really are. Tsa management are firm believers that if they can’t see it then it must not be true.
This appeared a few days ago. This is the story of a Tsa Screener from Orlando who felt the need to have a teenage sex slave. This article is from the NY Dailey News:
A perverted Transportation Security Administration employee’s alleged plot to turn a 15-year-old girl into his “sex slave” was foiled after his arrest for abusing the teen, according to cops in Florida.
The 57-year-old Bennett acknowledges he “groped” the girl, according to the station, citing a police report. But the girl’s version of the encounter is reportedly more graphic.
On a MySpace page that apparently belongs to Bennett, he says he is a S&M-oriented swinger out to meet “submissive females,” the station reports.
Cops say Bennett was forthcoming about his plans for the teen in a statement to authorities.
“He advised, in a written statement, he actually asked her to be his sex slave,” the report reads, according to WKMG.
Bennett works for the federal agency at Orlando International Airport. A TSA spokeswoman said his status with the agency, in light of his arrest, won’t be known until at least today, WKMG reports
After reading this you may be wondering how someone like this could become a an employees of the TSA. Well its quite easy. The Tsa states they do background checks on each of their employees, that is in fact true. What they don’t tell you is that some of these checks can take up to a year to perform. Because the Tsa has such a high turnover they will allow a new hire to perform screening functions before their back ground check comes back. This has happened several times at CVG in the past so it’s not really that surprising, the part that should make you think is the fact this person was allowed to screen children. America really needs to wake up so they can see what is going on in their airports.
Well this just came across CNN today. Apparently managers of a Federal Air Marshall’s office in Florida decided to invent a game that ridiculed Minorities, Gays and Women. Here is the Article from CNN:
(CNN) — The Transportation Security Administration has launched an internal investigation into an air marshal field office in Florida where supervisors are alleged to have used a crew assignment board to ridicule and keep score on women, gays and minorities, sources told CNN.
The board, resembling the TV game show “Jeopardy,” includes categories such as “pickle smokers,” “our gang” and “creatures,” which sources said were names used by managers for gay men, African-Americans and lesbians.
A photograph of the board was sent to CNN. The Transportation Security Administration confirmed the investigation in a written statement but did not elaborate on when the board was in use, where it was displayed or how it was used.
“Following a referral from DHS Office of the Inspector General, TSA’s Office of Inspection is conducting an ongoing investigation at the Orlando Field office,” the statement said.
“The Transportation Security Administration is dedicated to ensuring all employees are treated in a fair and lawful manner,” it said. “Accordingly, TSA takes all allegations of misconduct seriously. The Federal Air Marshal Service will continue to provide its full cooperation and support to the investigation.”
TSA’s Office of Inspection will present its findings to TSA’s acting administrator for appropriate action, the agency said.
The Tsa which operates the Air Marshall Service has had a long history of Discrimination bases on court filings and my own personal experience. With that said, I’m really not surprised as I have seen similar incidents at CVG. They have the same management. What I do find surprising is that the Public continues to put up with this kind of treatment. These are the people who are supposed to keep us safe. Instead we end up with this. It says in the article, there will be in investigation. I’ll believe it when I see it.
This is just another example of why the TSA should be dismantled.