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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 5, 2010
6:16 PM

CONTACT: ACLU

Mandy Simon, (202) 675-2312; media@dcaclu.org

TSA Expands Use Of Invasive Body Scanners

WASHINGTON - March 5 - According to reports today, the Transportation Security Administration will expand the use of full body scanners to 11 more American airports over the next two years. The body scanners, or whole body imaging devices, create a strikingly revealing image of the human body. The American Civil Liberties Union believes that this technology greatly infringes on civil liberties and there are serious questions regarding its efficacy in protecting airline travelers.
 
In the wake of the attempted Christmas Day attack, the government has announced intensified airport screening and there have been calls for the across-the-board implementation of full body scanners for all travelers. Both the House and Senate have held multiple hearings on airport security since January.
 
The following can be attributed to Laura W. Murphy, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:
 
“The Bill of Rights extends beyond curbside check-in and if the government insists on using these invasive search techniques, it is imperative that there be vigorous oversight and regulation to protect our privacy. There is no one measure or magic solution to keeping us safe, and while our government should strive for the best security possible, it must adhere to respect Americans’ civil liberties.
 
“Before these body scanners become the status quo at America’s airports, we need to ensure new security technologies are genuinely effective, rather than merely creating a false sense of security. It is far from clear whether this technology would have been able to foil the attempted Christmas Day attack and every resource we put into using these machines is a resource not spent on intelligence analysis or other law enforcement activity.”
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The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) conserves America's original civic values working in courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in the United States by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.



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