“‘Aggressively attempted to do a body cavity search in public”
It’s been too long since we talked about how TSA is easily one of the worst government agencies in existence, but this story is a great reminder.
A forty-two-year-old mom with breast cancer said she felt ‘violated’ after TSA agents attempted a body cavity search in public at the Los Angeles airport. Her crime? She informed agents she was traveling with a medical cream in her bag, like she had done numerous times before without issue. In order to continue traveling with the cream, she had to suffer a pat down ‘with pressure’, said the agents.
Denise Albert notified TSA of her chemo port in advance. They made her remove her shoes (treatment caused sores on her feet) even though she’s a PreCheck flyer, she removed her wig so they wouldn’t ruin it, and blue-gloved agents insisted on feeling up her port to “clear the area”.
The Alberts captured footage of the incident:
From the Daily Mail:
The security agents then pulled her aside, and said she would have to take off her shoes and undergo a full body pat-down ‘with pressure’ if she wanted to take the medical cream with her, Albert wrote.
The agents flouted the TSA pre-check protocol by asking her to take off her shoes, leaving her bare feet freezing for 20 minutes due to her medical treatment, she claimed.
Albert asked to sit down, since her chemotherapy has left her feet covered in sores, which she did not want touching the ground.
They later offered to conduct the search in the privacy of a room, but Albert said she couldn’t walk there because they wouldn’t return her boots.
The radio host said the agents then told her they would ‘apply pressure from head to toe’, and she decided to take her wig off, saying: ‘I didn’t want them to touch it, move it, or ruin it’.
At a certain point, one agent ‘forceab[ly] and aggressively put her hands down my jeans in the back’, Albert wrote, before adding that they ‘aggressively attempted to do a body cavity search in public’.
Video footage showed one woman touching her chest, despite Albert’s medical port. She had also undergone a lumpectomy to remove a growth from her breast.
She said as a TSA PreCheck passenger, she was not required to remove her shoes and agents were supposed to ask whether there were any tender areas they should avoid.
Later, when they went through her bags, they joked about finding her fake eyelashes, and Albert told her she had lost all her hair as a result of the cancer treatment.
A supervisor finally intervened and gave Albert a ‘regular soft pat down’ inside a private room.
She said she had ‘never been so humiliated or felt more violated in my life’.
After taking her horrifying experience public, Albert received an apology from the TSA and a promise to investigate the incident. TSA also promised to train their employees on proper handling of individuals with medical needs.
Gotta love the pervy blue-gloved agents protecting us from a mom undergoing cancer treatment. Bonus: we pay for this.
Defund this godforsaken agency and defund it now.
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