Transgender Man Was Forced To Remove Prosthetic By Airport Security
Airport security humiliated a transgender individual by forcing him to remove his prosthetic penis during a body search.
According to Daily Mail, the 2015 incident was featured in a complaint the Australian National LGBTI Health Alliance submitted to a senate inquiry committee on airport security.
The prosthetic in the passenger's underwear was detected when he stepped into a body scanner.
He told a security officer he is transgender, but the officer summoned his supervisor.
In the complaint, the passenger reportedly said,
In full view of other [travelers], the supervisor approached me putting rubber gloves on. He seemed more concerned with displaying his authority and making a spectacle out of the situation. When I asked him what the gloves were for, he told me that he was going to do a 'private search.' Not only did this make me feel incredibly uneasy, and anxious, but it was demeaning and unnecessary.
The supervisor then brought the passenger into a small room and told him to sign an unspecified form.
Before conducting the search, the supervisor put on a second glove.
When the passenger asked why this was necessary, the supervisor reportedly responded,
You want me to touch that thing with my bare hands?
The passenger was instructed to remove the prosthetic and put it on a tray before the supervisor administered a pat-down.
The passenger reportedly explained,
Once [the supervisor] was satisfied, he turned around and opened the door for me to leave -- my prosthetic still sitting in the tray. I asked him to close the door so that I could have some privacy as I placed my prosthetic back in place. He closed the door and... stood watching me as I put it back in place.
The passenger allegedly went on to say even though he "developed a thick skin" due to "some very confronting situations in the past," the supervisor's treatment made him feel "incredibly degraded" and "anxious about [traveling]."
The LGBTI Health Alliance said in a statement the passenger's experience served as an example of "pervasive discrimination against LGBTI populations" by airport security.
The senate inquiry committee addressed in the passenger's complaint will release a report on the incident in May.