TSA officers accused of racial profiling at Logan
BOSTON (WHDH) -- Those random checks at airport might not be so random after all.
The New York Times is reporting more than 30 TSA officers at Logan Airport say racial profiling has become commonplace.
A federal investigation is now underway. The TSA responded in a statement - saying, in part:
"Allegations of racial profiling in Boston have been reported to TSA and are currently under investigation. If any of these claims prove to be accurate, we will take immediate and decisive action to ensure there are consequences to such activity."
The TSA officers' internal complaints say Middle Easterners, African Americans and Hispanics were pulled aside by security-solely based on appearance.
Travelers we talked to at Logan said they haven't noticed anything too overt.
“I fly all the time, Dallas, London, all over. I don't see any discrimination anywhere,” said Ragu Nabaratin, a frequent flyer.
“In a month, maybe 2-3, once in a while I go through random check, but for the most part, it’s ok,” said Abhishek Gupta.
Others believe profiling is happening - and that doesn't bother them.
“If you want to check people, and you do it randomly, if you want to call it profiling, and at the end of the day they're doing their job…hopefully they're doing their job,” said Tom Bren.
The report says these officers stopped minorities with the thought those travelers would be carrying drugs, have open arrest warrants, or immigration issues.
Massport also released a statement tonight:
"There is no place for racial profiling in any security program. It is illegal and it is not effective. As the airport operator we take these allegations very seriously. We are eager to review the findings of a federal investigation into the matter.”
According to the New York Times there had been reports of racial profiling at airports in Newark, NJ and Hawaii, but nothing compared to the number of complaints in Boston.