Tuesday, July 17, 2007

A Victory for Traveling Parents

It may seem like I create controversy everywhere I go, but I want you all to know that I won this one...

After having a great time at Aunt Liz and Uncle Michael's wedding, Scott, the girls and I headed out of North Carolina via the Piedmont Triad International Airport in Greensboro. While going through security, we had a tiff with the TSA folks. Here's a copy of the letter I sent to them the day after we got home...

Dear TSA, While traveling with two toddlers yesterday from the Piedmont Triad International Airport (Greensboro, NC), I was not allowed to bring two sealed Minute Maid Juice Boxes through security with me. My children are two and four years old, but I was told I was only allowed to bring juice for a "baby." I was told that if my children could walk on their own they were too old for the regulation. Although I knew this to be false, nothing I said convinced either representative that I talked to that they were mistaken.

The first TSA representative who talked to me was extremely rude and passed me on to her supervisor immediately. Her supervisor was not rude, but clearly did not know the TSA regulations well enough to know that families with babies and toddlers are, according to the TSA website, allowed to take juice through security and onto the plane. We have traveled through Denver, Charlotte, Colorado Springs, and Oakland since the regulations were changed in November and have not had problems at any of those airports. The TSA supervisor told me that he could "not control what happens at other airports" but that he follows the TSA regulations.

For the sake of other families with small children traveling from Greensboro, I hope that the TSA representatives there will be educated about what is and is not allowed to be carried on by parents of babies and toddlers.

Hillary Dickman

Just a few minutes ago I received a call from the person in charge of TSA at Piedmont Triad International Airport. She apologized, conceded that I was right about the regulations and her TSA employees were wrong, and said that she would be having a meeting with them to clarify the regulation for them and change the way they handle security for parents with small children.

One small step for Hillary, one giant leap for traveling parents! At least, parents traveling from Greensboro...

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