Backs Bill To Provide Passenger Advocates At Security
The non-profit airline passenger advocacy organization
FlyersRights.org issued a statement Tuesday strongly supporting
creation of passenger advocacy positions at all airport TSA
checkpoints, an idea advanced by Sen. Charles Schumer and Sen.
Michael Gianaris. Founder and Executive Director Kate Hanni said,
"The recently TSA missteps, humiliating elderly women air
travelers, clearly demonstrate that airline passengers need someone
to turn to, on the spot, to prevent the kinds of mistreatment those
Hanni also noted that "The TSA's response to these incidents
further underlines the need for passenger advocates. The agency
regrets only that the passengers feel that they had a bad
experience, not that they truly did have a bad experience. An
on-scene passenger advocate could help all parties find more
acceptable solutions to individual problems."
Hanni cautioned, however, that "Passenger advocates at TSA
checkpoints must be truly independent to be truly effective. They
must be advocates passengers can trust and know that they, and not
the airlines' rights will be protected."
"FlyersRights urges that those who fill the new positions be
unconnected to either the airline industry or to the government.
They must be free to view each situation from all parties' point of
view, unencumbered by any one party's agenda."