Monday, November 22, 2010

TSA and Sanitary Pads

Pat downs at airport include hands in underpants and removing prosthetic breast


Repeated from Sacramento Examiner

What would you do if you were in the Sacramento airport and objected to the way your were being patted down or you questioned how or whether the agents were trained to monitor the measurement of radiation from full-body scanners? And what if you asked who monitors or watches the technicians that adjust the amount of radiation from the scanners that each person actually receives?

Which are more important for Sacramentans? Those questions above or whether pat-downs are too personal? Are those pat-downs going too far in airports? Women and men in other airports are raging about agents putting hands between underwear and skin to touch what's under that soiled sanitary napkin worn in your underwear. They're also enraged about being asked to remove a prosthetic breast when you're a cancer survivor.

What the passenger objected to was not only the gloved hand of the female agent touching her breasts, but according to the article the passenger explained, "Then she (the agent) went into the top of my slacks, inserted her hands between my underwear and my skin... then put her hands up on the outside of my slacks, and patted my genitals."

That passenger complained to the TSA supervisor and then on the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) website. Besides the many complaints about screening, the ultimate violation will come one day when someone who is supposed to pat down a female puts her gloved hand inside another passenger's underwear and gets her glove soiled by reaching to see what's being hidden in someone's sanitary napkin. It's bound to happen sooner or later.

Theoretically, that agent's possibly going to get a handful of body fluids. It's going to be a scenario similar to that or someone accidently disconnecting a colostomy bag and having their gloved hands covered in excrement. Or reaching inside of an incontinent person's plastic incontinence travel pants and getting soiled with urine. You can imagine what the TSA agents or private security individuals hired are possibly going to encounter in their plight to carry out their first priority which is safety.

Where is the line drawn between what agents are supposed to look at and what they think they want to see? For example, they are not supposed to ask cancer survivors to remove their prosthetic breasts, just to look at them.

Some agents may be so worried about 'contraband' being stuffed into a prosthetic breast, that they ask the person to remove the prosthesis from the bra. Basically, if anything was hidden in a cancer survivor's prosthetic breast, it would be inside, and the agent would have to rip apart the expensive prosthesis to see what's sewn or packed inside of it.

In the November 20, 2010 news article, "Cancer survivor forced to show prosthetic breast to TSA agents during airport pat-down," a flight attendant working for an airlines for more than 30 years was forced to show her prosthetic breast to a security agent during a pat-down at one U.S. airport. The flight attended is named in the article. As a cancer survivor, the flight attendant didn't want more radiation build-up of a full body scanner. So she chose to undergo the pat-down.

She went to a private room to be screened by a female agent performing a pat-down that resulted in being asked to remove her prosthesis from her bra to show to the agent. Unknown to her at time and apparently to the agent is that it's okay to ask to see a prosthesis, but not to ask a person to remove it to show close-up. Imagine being asked to remove your prosthetic arm or leg to show. So why be asked to remove a prosthetic breast after a masectomy?

If there were dangerous items in the prosthesis, they most likely would be sealed inside. Did the agent shake the artificial breast up and down to see whether loose bolts or other devices inside the prosthesis made noise? Are airports going too far? How far do you go when safety is the first priority? And which comes first, the health of the passenger or flight attendant or safety in general for all? How would you handle this situation if it were you as the agent or the passenger or flight attendant?

That's some of the shortcomings where the agents are supposed to look at a prosthesis, but why ask you to remove it? If harm was intended, the harmful substance would be deep inside the prosthesis and probably not be able to be seen even if you take it out and shake it. But the only one who can tell that to an agent who is going to pat you down is the agent's employer who needs to tell the agent you can look but you can't ask someone to remove a prosthesis.

People are being annoyed by this health trend of more invasive pat-downs or radiation-mongering scans. And a big question is whether the agents are informed just how much radiation is going to build up over the years in frequent flyers. What if the radiation is more than you're told? Again, when it comes to healthy trends, somebody has to watch the watchers to see whether they are doing their job safely and not abusively or just simply not given enough information.



Anonymous said...

Does anyone know of an environmentally friendly cleansing gel?

Anonymous said...

So,can you wear a pad or not?...Also is it illeagal to pat dowm a 12 year old..I mean are still children...right?