What the TSA does for travelers with disabilities, and what you should do!

airplane-file0001305960191Spring break is coming up, so it seems like the perfect time to remind you blog readers that if you’re flying anywhere, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has ways you can get help navigating airport checkpoints. TSA’s Passenger Support Specialists Program trains select Transportation Security Officers, lead TSOs and Sspervisors to take on the extra responsibility of helping passengers who may be in need of extra help at security checkpoints. The Transportation Security Administration website says more than 2,600 Passenger Support Specialists throughout the country assist passengers who require additional assistance with security and checkpoint screening, and Passenger Support Specialists receive specialized disability training provided by TSA’s Office of Civil Rights and Liberties Ombudsman and Traveler Engagement. The training for Passenger Support Specialists includes:

  • how to assist individuals with special needs
  • how to communicate with passengers by listening
  • how to communicate with passengers by explaining
  • disability etiquette
  • disability civil rights

The site encourages travelers who need special accommodations or are concerned about checkpoint screening to ask a checkpoint officer or supervisor for a Passenger Support Specialist to provide on-the-spot assistance. Travelers can request a Passenger Support specialist ahead of time, too, by calling the TSA Cares hotline at 855.787.2227.

Many of you won’t be traveling until next week or so, but since TSA recommends you call approximately 72 hours ahead of travel to give them a chance to coordinate checkpoint support with a TSA Customer Service Manager at the airport, I thought it best to publish this now…happy trails!


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