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WINK News - TSA Disciplines Dozens of Workers at SWFL International

News Article

Location: Ft. Myers, Fl

By Unknown

Five TSA workers have been recommended for termination, and dozens more face suspension after the agency found screening failures at Southwest Florida International Airport.

WINK News is learning the TSA made similar mass firings in the past year, including Honolulu and Charlotte, North Carolina, where it said agents didn't properly screen baggage.

Now, a Florida Congressman, who's also Transportation and Infrastructure Committee chairman, is wondering aloud about possible cover-ups at the TSA.

"TSA and some of its management operatives have tried to sweep this under the table," said Rep. John Mica (R-FL). He believes the Transportation Security Administration isn't telling the whole story about security failures at America's airports.

At Southwest Florida International, the TSA confirms it investigated several employees for failing to do proper random security screenings last year. Five TSA workers workers learned Friday they were being recommended for termination. 38 others face suspension.

Congressman Mica is upset that lawmakers and the public are just finding out now.

"Investigating it took that long, so again it leads me to believe there is a cover-up and an intentional stonewalling of Congress," he said.

The TSA says these random screening policies are "another layer of security."

An agency spokesperson insists all passengers and baggage were screened during the period under investigation; but the year-long investigation at RSW is only the latest at a U.S. airport in the past year to result in discipline.

Congressman Mica says the TSA's own investigations aren't enough.

"What's incredible is Congress is in the dark on one of the biggest meltdowns in security that we've had with the Transportation Security Administation," Rep. Mica said.

The recommended firings at RSW aren't immediate; the employees are given seven days to respond. Any suspensions would last two weeks.

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