TSA Forces Disabled Boy to Remove Leg Braces

Police officer complains of TSA overkill
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 16, 2010 4:46 AM CST
FILE - In this Jan. 4 2010 file photo, TSA officer Robert Howard signals an airline passenger forward at a security check-point at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, in SeaTac, Wash. The Transportation...   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, file)

(Newser) – A developmentally delayed child was forced to remove his leg braces at the airport to prove he wasn't a security risk. "Unfortunately, it's no joke," writes Daniel Rubin for Philly.com. The child, Ryan, was en route to Disney Land to celebrate his fourth birthday when TSA officials ruled he must clear customs without his leg braces, on his own two feet. To prevent injury, his parents walked just ahead and just behind him though security.

The boy's furious father, a police officer, complained to a TSA manager at the airport, and was told to "calm down and enjoy his vacation," Rubin writes. Back home, he called the airport manager, and eventually got an apology. According to TSA policy, Ryan should have been granted access to a private screening area where he could have been swabbed for traces of explosive material.

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