Mom Tells Tale Of ‘Horrifying’ TSA Security Check That Traumatized Her Son
(Facebook / Jennifer Williamson)
Dealing with airport security is often a major turnoff from flying. But for one mother and her son, the experience was nothing short of traumatic. Jennifer Williamson, mother to a 12 year old son named Aaron recounted their most recent experience at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in Texas, and it was troubling to say the least. In a Facebook post that subsequently went viral, Williamson stated that “We were treated like dogs because I requested they attempt to screen him in other ways.”
Aaron has Sensory Processing Disorder, and because of this Jennifer asked the TSA agents if it would be possible for an alternate screening procedure, per TSA regulations. The TSA agent took her son and performed a pat down on him, which Williamson filmed. The pat down lasted two minutes. That seems a little long for a pat down, even if there was some sort of suspicion. According to a statement the TSA released regarding the incident, the screening was given to “resolve an alarm of the passenger’s laptop.”
However, Williamson’s account of the experience is different. “Let me make something else crystal clear. He set off NO alarms. He physically did not alarm at all during screening, he passed through the detector just fine.” For a child with SPD, any sort of ordeal like this that involves a lot of physical contact would be distressing. And of course it is incredibly distressing for a mother to watch. To his credit, Aaron stays very calm throughout the extensive pat down. Despite his calm, Williamson explained that “He is still several hours later saying “I don’t know what I did. What did I do?” I am livid.” As many mothers would be in such a tense situation.
In their statement, the TSA is standing by their actions and procedure. “The video shows a male TSA officer explaining the procedure to the passenger, who fully cooperates,” per the statement. “Afterward, the TSA officer was instructed by his supervisor, who was observing, to complete the final step of the screening process.” There were also two police officers on the scene as well.
Regardless of what the TSA statement may read, Williamson is still shaken and wants to of course advocate for her child. “Please, share… make this viral like the other children’s videos with TSA.” She pleads. The post has now been shared over 100K times. Hopefully, Williamson is able to get the answers that she seeks and Aaron is not affected too deeply.