Transportation Security Administration Case Study

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Aviation and Transportation Security Act was enacted two months after 9/11 terrorist attack. This act federalized airport security under the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). It was signed into law by President George W. Bush. It authorized the creation of a new federal government agency specifically designed to strengthen the security of the nation’s transportation systems while also ensuring the free movement of people and commerce. As a result, a large government workforce of passenger and bagger screeners were enacted to replace the private contract screeners previously employed by airlines.

TSA- Transportation Security Administration
LAX- Los Angeles International Airport
SFO-San Francisco International Airport

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These assumptions concluded that all passengers were equally suspicious and the main purpose of airport security is to keep dangerous objects off of planes. According to Poole and Carafano (2006), “These assumptions resulted in the creation of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a federal bureaucracy that has cost a consid­erable amount of money without making Ameri­cans noticeably safer.” Federalizing airport security was needed to ensure that a high level of security nationwide was provided regardless of the size of an airport or its functions. However, this rationale and approach of a one-size fits all drove inefficiency because the differences in airport size and operations affected both passengers and baggage’s. Due to the federalization of airport security, disadvantages that have arisen with TSA. As a result, some airports have remained with the private sector due to its…show more content…
TSA has a major design flaw. Because TSA has a dual role, it creates a serious conflict of interest. According to Ybarra (2013), “All other aspects of airport security—access control, perimeter control, lobby control, etc.—are the responsibility of the airport, under TSA’s regulatory supervision. But for screening, TSA regulates itself.” Although its arms- length regulation is a good government principle, TSA’s self-regulation is problematic. As a result, many wonder whether TSA, is serious about it performance problems of its workplace because news has been broadcasted about TSA’s lack of workplace performance. For example, according to Ybarra (2013), “TSA screeners at Chicago O’Hare International Airport and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) missed three times as many hidden bomb materials as did privately contracted screeners at San Francisco International Airport (SFO).” Also, because TSA operates the vast passenger and baggage screening system, it takes the government 's focus away from proper federal activities such as terrorism intelligence and
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