Airport Plan Report Moves Forward

FlyersRights Voices Support for STRIP Act

Year-end Gift to Flyers Rights Education Fund

What Kate’s Saying

Airline Contingency Plan Research Moves Forward

When Kate served on the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Tarmac TaskDOT LogoForce in 2008, she was skeptical of the Airport Council International-North America (ACI-NA) position that no DOT rules were needed requiring airports to have tarmac delay contingency plans. ACI-NA assured the task force that airports already had such plans.

The many long tarmac delays caused by the weather disaster now known as “Snowtober,” particularly at Connecticut’s Bradley Field, were not entirely, or even primarily, the airlines’ fault. Instead, the strandings illustrated the lack of preparedness of some of our nation’s airports and widespread failures of communication, cooperation, and collaboration between the many agencies involved in our nation’s complex air travel system.

To determine the validity of that observation, member Peter Green spearheaded a research project on tarmac delay contingency planning at the nation’s hub airports. He sent Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to 65 large- and medium-hub airports and to over 100 small- and non-hub airports. We announced a December 30 release date.

Receipt of this data has been delayed by longer than expected response times from some airports, necessitating revision of the release date. We want to give the airports every opportunity to respond to our Freedom of Information requests, so we’re expanding the window of opportunity. We are very grateful to those airports that have already provided information, and look forward to presenting an illuminating look at the state of our airports’ tarmac delay contingency planning.

Our target release date is now January 16, 2012. Please make a tax-deductibledonation to the Flyers Rights Education Fund now, so that Kate can take the results of our airport survey to Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood personally. Our limited resources make that trip otherwise impossible.

FlyersRights Voices Support for STRIP Act

Recent news stories, from this month’s humiliation of Lenore Zimmerman at JFKto last week’s TSA confiscation of a cupcake at Las Vegas’ McCarran AirporthaveTSA Funny Logo caused many of our members to express concern about airport check-in procedures. These incidents demonstrate, in our view, failures of leadership, insufficient guidance, and inadequate training. Our members’ attitude reflects the perception that virtually unlimited power is being granted to these agents who frequently have neither the skills nor the resources to exercise that power wisely.

The recent rash of publicized TSA excesses has caused Tennessee Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn to say “Enough!” She has introduced H.R. 3608, the Stop TSA’s Reach In Policy (STRIP) Act. The bill would prohibit any TSA employee not trained as a federal law enforcement officer or eligible for federal law enforcement benefits from wearing law enforcement uniforms or wearing a police-like metal badge.

“It is outrageous that in a post 9/11 world that the American people should have to live in fear of those whose job it is to keep us safe,” Blackburn said. “Congress has sat idly by as the TSA
strip searches 85 year old grandmothers in New York, pats down 3 year olds in Chattanooga, and checks colostomy bags for explosives in Orlando. Enough is enough! The least we can do is end this impersonation which is an insult to real cops.”

Congresswoman Blackburn’s office contacted Kate to ask for our support. FlyersRights strongly supports Congresswoman Blackburn’s bill. While we understand that most TSA personnel diligently work at their tasks, we agree with Congresswoman Buchanan’s assertion that “It is outrageous that in a post 9/11 world that the American people should have to live in fear of those whose job it is to keep us safe.” Moreover, we agree that the uniforms and badges worn by TSA gate personnel imply a degree of training and expertise that is not supported by current TSA training. believes that TSA personnel should not be called TSA Officers until they are thoroughly trained in law enforcement procedures and the appropriate exercise of law enforcement powers.

Make a Year-end Gift to Flyers Rights Education Fund

You still have a few more days to take advantage of the matching gift challenge from FREF LogoBoard Member Paul Hudson and friends of Ralph Nader. The coalition Paul put together will match your donation to the Flyers Rights Education Fund, dollar for dollar, through the end of the year


If you’ve given recently, please accept our thanks. For those of you who haven’t, perhaps you’re looking for one more tax-deductible donation for 2011. Please consider our education and services arm, the Flyers Rights Education Fund, and help us carry our message forward.

Please donate now, and help Kate get to Washington to meet with Secretary LaHood.

Thank you!

What Kate’s Saying

FOX Business Willis Report

Kate Hanni talks TSA on The Willis Report
Kate Hanni talks TSA on The Willis Report


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