TSA on the Job: Passenger Support Specialist
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TSA on the Job: Passenger Support Specialist

♪ music ♪ Deborah:
A Passenger Support Specialist for TSA is a Transportation
Security Officer that is trained specially
to help passengers with disabilities…. cultural differences… anything that needs assisting through the screening process. Passenger Support Specialists
are requested sometimes for many reasons– sometimes flying with
a child by yourself, sometimes just the ability
to have that security with somebody walking
you through. Just the fear of flying
can sometimes require a passenger to request
that extra support.Deborah:
A typical day for a Passenger Support
Specialist, I start in with
a morning briefing, I usually check my emails
for the day and see if I have a request for a Passenger Support Specialist. And, if I do, in most cases
I contact that passenger, let them know where
the meeting point is, make arrangements
to meet them. sometimes helping them
with their bags. I usually engage
with them to feel out what they need, what their
requirements are. Sometimes people just need
me to walk along with them. June: The program
is extremely important because when people have a need,
there needs to be a person that’s going
to supply that need that really cares about
what that need is. It doesn’t matter —
you just say what you need and that’s what we’re here for. And it’s important
for the passenger to have a personal
relationship with the Passenger Support Specialist because, first of all,
there’s trust. They also know
that we care about them and we’re going to do things
and treat them with dignity and respect. Deborah: I am
a 9-11 survivor; I was in the Pentagon on 9-11,
so I know the importance of security screening. The little help
that we do by screening passengers
every day makes a difference. It makes a difference. June: What I
would say to the traveling public is
please, if you need some help, no matter what it is, go ahead and talk
to TSA Cares and ask for a
Passenger Support Specialist because we’re here and
everyone that’s on that list really cares about not only
doing something but helping you. So it’s not a job to us.
It is something that we love. It’s a passion. Deborah: How are you
this morning? I love meeting new people. Every day working in the airport
requires that I do interact with travelers
on a daily basis and it just brings me joy
to see people make it through safe
and know that they’re going to be safe
when they get on the plane and know that
I made a difference. I’m Deborah Owens,
a Passenger Support Specialist here at the Ronald Reagan
Washington National Airport.

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