TSA Caught Covering Up Pat-Down Complaints, Lying in FOIA Response
September 11, 2012 22 Comments
A group called governmentattic.org was nice enough to file an FOIA request with the TSA requesting snail-mail complaints received by them regarding their then-new pat-down procedure (which they admit requires screeners to touch your genitals, buttocks, breasts, and everywhere else). Over a year and a half later, the TSA replied with 201 complaints submitted by members of the public in Q4 of 2010.
Considering the ACLU states that it received over 900 complaints in just a single month of Q4, it seems highly unlikely that only 200 people wrote to the TSA to complain. Luckily, I don’t have to simply have suspicions: I know that the TSA either destroyed or simply failed to release complaints, because I personally wrote to the TSA on November 6th, 2010, just 10 days before I decided to file suit, and my complaint is not included in the 201 released!
Lying in an FOIA response may constitute a federal crime. Sure, it’s possible that mine just got “lost,” but based on the ACLU number, it seems more than a few disappeared. Let’s expose this: if you sent a complaint about the pat-downs to the TSA, DHS, or Office of the President at the end of 2010, please have a look at the complaints released and let me know (either way) in the comments here whether your complaint was included.