TSA Accused of Anti-Black and Hispanic Discrimination
Thursday, August 16, 2012
Federal airport screeners in Boston have admitted to racially profiling minorities going through checkpoints at Logan International, creating yet another serious problem for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
More than 30 TSA workers revealed that the “behavior detection” program at Logan routinely focused on Hispanics, especially those traveling to Miami, and blacks sporting urban attire, such as baseball caps worn backwards.
“They just pull aside anyone who they don’t like the way they look—if they are black and have expensive clothes or jewelry, or if they are Hispanic,” one white TSA official told The New York Times.
TSA workers targeted so many minorities that it caught the attention of the Massachusetts State Police, who wound up asking the federal agency what was going on at Logan.
A TSA spokesman promised there would be “consequences” if the agency determines its workers went overboard in pulling aside Hispanics and blacks.
In addition to Boston, TSA workers in New Jersey and Hawaii also have been accused of racially profiling passengers, although in smaller numbers than those reported at Logan.
To Learn More:
Racial Profiling Rife at Airport, U.S. Officers Say (by Michael Schmidt and Eric Lichtblau, New York Times)
Profiling Reports Spur Call for Action (by Jenna Russell and Wesley Lowery, Boston Globe)
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