Lucy Forck has spina bifida and at three-years-old travels in a wheelchair. While she and her family were traveling to Orlando, Florida to visit Walt Disney World, the family had an unfortunate situation occur while attempting to pass through airport security and board their plane.
Fortunately, Lucy’s mother Annie recorded the entire event on her cell phone.
Lucy was taken aside for a “pat-down” and a “wheelchair swab” specifically because she was in fact, in a wheelchair. According to reports, her father Nathan told TSA agents that singling her out was a form of discrimination. He told agents:
"You're not going to put your hand on my child without probable cause. Because she is in a wheelchair, we have to pat her down? That's discrimination against a disabled person—to just single her out for special treatment because she is disabled."
Obviously distraught by the entire ordeal, Lucy’s mother attempted to reason with agents who incorrectly told her that filming of the pat down was illegal.
"The problem is, I don’t allow anyone to touch my little daughter,” said Annie. “It just seems ominous for you guys to suggest that you have to do this in the dark. That in and of itself seems very inappropriate.”
After 45 minutes the TSA eventually agreed to inspect the wheelchair without little Lucy inside.
In an attempt to repair some of the damage from the February 9th ordeal the TSA issued a very short and mundane statement. It reads:
"TSA regrets inaccurate guidance was provided to this family during screening and offers its apology. We are committed to maintaining the security of the traveling public and strive to treat all passengers with dignity and respect. While no pat-down was performed, we will address specific concerns with our workforce."
Further, Lucy’s father Nathan received a personal apology from the TSA regarding the pat down.
In an interview with Fox News, Nathan said that the family had a great time at Disney World and that little Lucy seems to be back to normal.
What do you think, should the TSA be able to pat down children? What about people in wheelchairs?