TSA regulations

24 11 2010

A lot of people will probably disagree with me on this.

There’s been a lot of press about the guy with the urostomy that leaked while being checked by TSA people.

I have had leaks before. But they were all my fault. I’ve never had anyone poke or even pull on my bag that caused a leak. I’m thinking there was an underlying problem there.

I know people are pissed. If that had happened to me, I’d obviously be upset. But I don’t think this should be used to stop safety procedures. Yeah, this sucks, but wouldn’t it suck more to be blown up? I’m pretty sure it would.

I think by making sure the appliance is applied well and is empty before going through the process would help. Also being clear and helpful and patient with the attendants will also be a plus.

Like I said. Reading the message boards, a lot of people are pretty pissed about this. They are yelling about ostomate’s rights, which I understand. But I don’t get why our rights are any different from any other person. If terrorists figured out that ostomates never had security measures like this then they would use that, wouldn’t they?




3 responses

3 01 2011

I’m appalled at your attitude. I recently completed a trip involving passage through 8 airports. Thankfully none of them were in the USA. Some of these experiences were little short of horrific.
I have a metal hip as well as an ileostomy, so I am always singled out for ‘special treatment’ when it comes to the security check. I have found that very few airport security staff know what an ileostomy is. I was subjected to a pat-down at every airport I passed through a full strip search at two of them and partial strip searches at most of the others.. At two airports my request to be searched in private was totally ignored and I was forced to raise my shirt and drop my trousers in public so that my ileostomy appliance could be examined. At every airport my belongings were left to be picked over by other passengers while I was subjected to these additional checks.
I’m sorry. but I don’t accept that the ends justify the means. Disabled passengers should be entitled to ensure that their disability is properly understood before being required to consent to a search. Furthermore there should be an automatic right for those of us with these disabilities to be screened in private.
If they want to take a sample from my ileostomy bag, they should also be asking for stool samples from able bodied passengers! I’m all for equality, but that isn’t what we are getting here!
If every able bodied passenger had to endure what I suffer every time I fly, there would be public outcry.
All the current security measures at airports do not make me feel any safer. There is a disproportionate amount of time spent humiliating and harassing the elderly and the disabled and an over-reliance on metal detectors. If a terrorist does succeed in getting on to a plane with weapons or a bomb I’m sure he will contrive to be one of the vast majority of passengers who get through security without setting off the walk through metal detector. Not all weapons are made of metal – and wines and spirits in glass bottles are readily available airside. Have you ever seen the injuries that can be inflicted with a broken bottle?
As passengers we pay the salaries of airport security staff, albeit indirectly – and this appears to have been forgotten. I believe that passengers, including disabled passengers, are entitled to be treated as customers, and not as criminals or objects of ridicule. I understand that security needs to be thorough and would not wish it to be otherwise. However there need be no conflict between the need for stringent security, and treating customers with dignity and respect, if some thought is given to the process and staff are properly trained and supervised. If we have reached the stage where it is really necessary to treat disabled people like this, in the name of security, then the terrorists have truly won!
I am shocked that a fellow ostomist could think otherwise.

3 01 2011

I respect your opinion. I can see that this is obviously a real issue that needs to be addressed.

Hearing about your experiences illustrates a couple of things for me. One, at least the airport staff are looking into security in a real way. Two, the way that this is carried out is pretty ridiculous.

I agree that there should be more privacy and respect. My concern was that I feel that some ostomates are asking for exceptions to be made for them. I agree that things need to be respectful. I don’t agree that searches should not happen. The strip searches especially are pretty intense. If they are considered necessary, I’m with you that they should be done in private. I think that should be true of anyone, not just those of us with disabilities.

My opinions are just that- my opinions. To me, I’d rather go through the indignity of a search than let something scary get on a plane. Would it be horrific? Yeah. I’m not saying it isn’t. I’m not saying it doesn’t suck or that it’s fair for those of us who are already dealing with so much to go through more. I know that many people don’t view having an ostomy as a disability.

I think you make some great points. I’m sure that as I experience the TSA procedures more when traveling my opinions will change or solidify more.

I’m sorry you had to go through all of these experiences, in one trip none-the-less!

Thanks for your input.

7 02 2011

Here are my 2 cents. I was in about 5 airports over this summer. I had ZERO problems. Perhaps because most of them let me just walk through the metal detector. I choose not to make myself stand out and need special attention.

The one time I had any kind of issue, I had to walk through that “freaky check you out all naked like” thing. Once I walked through that, I had to “step aside” I got the wand and a pat down. The girl radioed someone somewhere and asked me what it was, i said a medical device and she radioed back. It took about 5 extra minutes but afterwards she said ok, bye. I even offered to show it to her, but she said no. I got more issues with my facewash than I did my ostomy. I dont know when you’ve been flying or where, but I think that regulations have been getting better in regards to ostomies. And if you get a worker somewhere, who is uneducated, DEAL WITH IT. People get stopped all the time over everything. Sometimes its your fault, sometimes its not. Until there are better laws about this sort of thing, we’re going to have to just endure it. Trust me, after what ive been through, an ahole TSA officer is the least of my problems.

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