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America’s Transportation Security Administration Agrees to Stop Profiling Black Women with Natural Hair at Airport Pat-Downs

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For a few years now, women of African American decent have complained of being targeted by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) in America for unnecessary screening of their natural hair when travelling. Even Solange Knowles, who also had her hair searched by Florida TSA shared experience saying “My hair is not a storage drawer“.

But now #TeamNatural ladies can take a breather when travelling. TSA has finally agreed to retrain security officers with an emphasis on hair pat-downs for Black female travelers. They have also agreed to specifically track down complaints filed by black women at all airports they oversee to determine if discriminatory practices have occurred.

The pressure for this change first started in 2011 when a woman – Timery Shante Nance, described the “embarrassing” moment she was pulled aside after being cleared by a full body scan. She detailed how she watched Caucasian women with curly hair and bushy ponytails walk by security, while the security officer insisted on checking her hair which she had in a puff hairstyle. She eventually complained about the incident but got no response from TSA.

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We aren’t sure if this retraining will do a wealth of good, but we have one question – if the scanners at airports can see under your clothes, why cant it see through your hair? Is the hair pat-down necessary in the first place or just discriminatory?

Share your thoughts Natural hair Community!

Photo Credit: Dreamstime/Jason Stitt

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of BellaNaija.com. Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at)bellanaija.com or style(at)bellanaija.com | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle

10 Comments

  1. @edDREAMZ

    April 1, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    a.k.a EDWIN CHINEDU AZUBUKO said…
    .
    Gud news to all those travelling then…
    Congrats BUHARIANS….. Sai Buhari
    .
    .
    ***CURRENTLY IN JUPITER***

  2. Carliforniabawlar

    April 1, 2015 at 8:48 pm

    Ha!! Those effers keep patting my fros, twistouts and buns….annoying af!

  3. bruno

    April 1, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    why would you pat my hair, hair that took me 30 minutes to comb.

    oyinbo people warn yourself oh.

  4. bruno

    April 1, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    many oyinbo people have never seen or touched the natural hair that grows out of a black person’s head before, that’s why
    they want to feel it and pat it with their hands because they are excited about it. lol

    • Dom!!!

      April 2, 2015 at 9:09 am

      True!!!!

    • Nahum

      April 2, 2015 at 10:10 am

      I truly believe that is the reason too. White people are so frigging excited to touch our hair, its scary actually. Almost like an obsession

  5. Slice

    April 1, 2015 at 11:54 pm

    Pls check It to. Safety first

  6. Mimz

    April 2, 2015 at 12:27 am

    Lol!! Are you really going to make this about natural hair? I’ve had my nicely relaxed hair patted several times and i know a bunch of white and black women who have undergone the same experience. To be honest, all you need to do is pack your hair in a bun and you get that treatment. I’m actually happy that those scanners do not see through thick hair cos that means they do not use a very high level of radiation. I’ll rather get my hair messed with than get a blast of radiation.

  7. jinkelele

    April 2, 2015 at 8:33 am

    Arrant nonsense
    Wierdest ish I ever heard

    So they check wigs and big ass weaves too

  8. goddess

    April 3, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    I have experienced that TSA did pat my hair…My hair is not storage. I noticed white women have buns and up-do and the TSA did not even pat their hairs…only target black women…it is not right…it is discriminated..because we know better that we do not carry drugs..use Common sense.

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