Alaska Lawmaker With Mastectomy Refuses TSA Pat-Down
Cissna, an Anchorage Democrat who was returning home after a medical treatment, underwent security screening at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, where a body scan showed scars on her body from breast cancer. She had undergone a mastectomy in the past, her chief of staff, Michelle Scannell, told The Associated Press.
The 68-year-old lawmaker had been through a pat-down three months ago and decided she would never again "submit to that horror." She said she told the Transportation Security Administration on Sunday that she would "not allow the feeling-up, and I would not use the mode that required it."
The TSA website's guidelines for prosthetics says, "Security officers will need to see and touch your prosthetic device, cast or support brace as part of the screening process." Many women who have had a mastectomy have a prosthetic breast.
Cissna said she has fought for assault victims' rights for 50 years.
"The very last thing an assault victim or molested person can deal with is yet more trauma and the groping of strangers, the hands of government 'safety' policy," she said. "The freedom of should never come at the price of basic human dignity and pride."
Cissna is expected back in Juneau on Thursday morning, according to the Anchorage Daily News.