Flight attendants were greeting passengers at Sea-Tac Airport Monday and asking them to support an effort to overturn the Transportation Security Administration’s decision to allow small knives on board jetliners.
A United Airlines flight attendant was passing out leaflets. Travelers are being asked to contact their congressperson.
“We are on the front lines,” said Karen Levy, a United Airlines flight attendant for 35 years. “There is no reason to introduce anything on board that can induce panic.”
The TSA’s plan to begin allowing pocket knives smaller than 2.36 inches long, as well as sports equipment such as golf clubs and hockey sticks, is set to go into effect April 25. TSA officials say they want screeners to be watching more closely for items that can bring down an airplane like a bomb.
“Risk-based security screening makes sense,” said a spokesperson for the Association of Flight Attendants. “Introducing risks into the system does not.”
A Coalition of Flight Attendant Unions, representing 90,000 airline employees, held leafleting events last week at Los Angeles International Airport, Ronald Reagan International Airport in Washington, D.C., and Norfolk International Airport in Virginia.