Hundreds of TSA workers Fail Drug and Alcohol Tests

Dear TSA, the first step to addiction recovery is admitting you have a problem.

Ever feel like the blue uniformed agents of the Transportation Security Administration are less than the eagle-eyed front line of defense against terrorism you hoped they would be? Well, you might be right. A recent student revealed that hundreds of TSA agents across America can't even pass a drug test. The Blaze reports:

In its report published this week, KGW-TV found that 858 TSA workers around the country tested positive for drugs and alcohol between 2010 and 2016, according to federal records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request.

And the drug use occurred at some of the nation’s busiest hubs: 51 TSA workers tested positive for drugs and alcohol at Los Angeles International Airport, 41 tested positive at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City, 35 at Boston’s Logan International Airport and six at the Portland International Airport.

A spokesperson for the TSA said any employees who fail the drug and alcohol tests, which are administered randomly, are fired. The agency also targets employees it believes to be under the influence.

“Illegal substances include, but are not limited to, cocaine, marijuana, opiates, amphetamines, and phencyclidine ,” TSA spokesman Nico Melendez told KGW.

Wow. That's alarming. There's something particularly irritating about the TSA. The fact that it's an ineffective bureaucracy is one thing. But the fact that it's an ineffective bureaucracy that forces you to put your belongings in a bin and take your shoes off is quite another. They're supposed to help keep us safe, and they seem more obsessed with our moisturizer container size than actual safety. The report had some other disturbing details too:

“TSA employees have been criminally charged for using cocaine on the job, facilitating large scale drug and human smuggling, and engaging in child pornography activities,” the report stated.

And in February, TSA and airport employees were brought up on charges related to an alleged cocaine-smuggling operation going back nearly 20 years. The defendants allegedly transported cocaine-filled suitcases through security at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Between 1998 and 2016, Newsweek reported, roughly 20 tons of cocaine made it through the airport.

The TSA, which has 60,000 employees at 450 airports, needs reform.  But, as they say, the first step to addiction recovery is admitting you have a problem.

Photo credit: WikiCommons