|Sounds like the TSA is still getting into trouble as recently as April of this year. Four individuals (two current and two former employees) were arrested at LAX for bribery. This is the third bribery case involving the TSA this year alone. In the same month of April, another TSA employee admitted to accepting a $1,200 bribe from a passenger for allowing him to pass through while smuggling oxycodone from Florida to Connecticut.
Presently the TSA employees approximately 50,000 employees and most are run through a comprehensive background check when hired. The criminal background check includes fingerprinting and running their information through sex offender registries, terrorist watch databases, and national criminal databases. However; recently it’s been reported that many of the employees dressed in uniform, trained and working have not been screened because of the length of time for the information to be returned.
Ultimately the employees of the TSA are run through the same process that all of the other airline/airport employees are run through including those that are only allowed in secure areas. What is surprising though is the number of crimes that occur as the result of the actions of TSA employees. When you consider that there are many that have not yet been through the screening process also realize that presently the background check is only performed when hiring.
According to the New York Times the agency has let nearly 500 employees go because of theft alone. In hearing how many iPods, iPhones and other items have gone missing when passing through TSA, personally I am going to start to keep a better eye on my stuff when traveling. In one case TSA agents were sentenced for stealing $40,000 from a checked bag. Not that most of us would ever carry nor check $40,000 in cash anytime soon.
Even volunteer coaches and league administrators in youth sports are screened each and every year! Interesting to realize that volunteers are screened on a regular basis, yet the employees that are there to protect us while traveling to prevent another 9/11 incident are only screened prior to their employment. There are conversations might be happening now as the House in the House Oversight and Government Reform committee are holding a fourth hearing on TSA practices. Maybe in the near future the highly funded TSA will soon come in line with a background check reoccurring process that is performed on our children’s volunteer coaches. There is even a Senator that wants the TSA shut down because of the level of corruption that has been prevalent.
So next time you go through the airport, realize that the individuals that are checking your bags and patting you down are not highly paid and temptation is present as they review your belongings. Also consider that the last time this individual was thoroughly run through any type of background check process was when they were hired. And some of those agents may not have yet been thoroughly screened.
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