The head of the transportation security administration will be in airports across the country this holiday season in a new public service announcement. He's urging travelers to cooperate with the agency's enhanced security measures.
The TSA wants to make sure the busiest travel time of the year doesn't get even busier. In a new public service announcement, TSA head John Pistole is urging passengers at airports nationwide to support tougher new security measures.
"We very much appreciate your involvement, cooperation, and assistance in ensuring the safety of you the traveling public," Pistole says.
His message comes amid backlash over the government's use of full body scanners and pat-downs some say are too aggressive.
"At one point the agent had his hands actually in the top of my pants, my jeans, and I was taken aback by that," said one traveler, Kevin Haymes.
Protesters are calling for national opt-out day Wednesday, urging fliers to opt out of body scans forcing extra pat downs. Experts say even if just a few people participate, dozens of airports could experience huge delays.
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said, "We hope people will not opt out. We hope people will understand the goal, the purpose for what is being done.”
Napolitano defended the stepped-up measures Monday along with several travelers.
"I like it,” said Kristy Griffin. “I figure I have nothing to hide so I'd rather everyone be searched and everybody be safe."
The TSA says about one million passengers have been patted down in the past month, and just a fraction of them – 700 – have complained.