Chaos at airports as TSA ‘sick outs’ increase to almost THREE TIMES normal rate and now there are calls for unpaid agents to go on STRIKE

Tuesday, January 15, 2019
By Paul Martin

Transportation Security Administration reported a national absence rate of 6.8 percent on Monday, compared with 2.5 percent on the same day last year
Officials declined to provide specific absence figures, citing security risks
Given that there are some 51,000 screeners are employed by the TSA, the nationwide absentee rate Monday likely exceeded 3,800
Monday marked the first business day after security screeners saw their first missed paycheck since the shutdown began in late December
Travelers at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the world’s busiest, have been warned to arrive three hours early amid long security checkpoint lines
Airports in Houston, Miami, and Washington had to close checkpoints this week
A New York Times opinion piece on Monday urged TSA workers to go on strike, though such action is illegal for federal employees

By MEGAN SHEETS
DAILYMAIL.COM
15 January 2019

The number of security screeners failing to show up for work across the US has tripled in the fourth week of the partial government shutdown.

The Transportation Security Administration reported a national absence rate of 6.8 percent – about one in 13 – on Monday, to a 2.5 percent rate one year ago on the same day.

Monday marked the first business day after security screeners saw their first missed paycheck since the shutdown began.

TSA officials remain concerned they could soon reach a ‘tipping point’ where large numbers of their agents quit and look for paid work elsewhere.

A New York Times opinion piece published this week suggested that employees should go on strike to send a message to lawmakers and President Trump – though such action would be illegal.

In the meantime, travelers have been advised to get to the airport three hours early amid nightmarish security lines.

At Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the world’s busiest, some passengers have had to wait more than an hour to get through checkpoints.

‘It’s chaos out here,’ passenger Vincent Smith said as he stood in a line that snaked through the Atlanta airport’s atrium and baggage claim areas. ‘This line, I’ve been here about 15 minutes and it has moved two feet.’

In a statement Tuesday morning, TSA officials said: ‘Nationwide, TSA screened 1.89 million passengers yesterday. Overall, 99.1 percent of passengers waited less than 30 minutes; 94.3 percent of passengers less than 15 minutes. In TSA Pre Check lanes, passengers on average waited less than 10 minutes.’

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