This Trans Woman Faced Nearly an Hour of Hell at the Hands of TSA

Shadi Petosky

A transgender woman had to deal with the TSA for nearly an hour after issues about her gender came up.

Shadi Petosky was going through the Orlando International Airport TSA security checkpoint just like every other person traveling that day. According to NBC News the TSA agent pushed the button to scan a female. However, they were shocked when they saw an anomaly in her crotch area. When asked about what was in her pants she simply replied, “I’m transgender. That’s my penis.”

Petosky was interview by NBC News through a series of text messages where she said the agent responded to her comment with, “If you are a man, then go back in the machine and we’ll run you as a man.”

That is when things began to get out of hand. Petosky made it clear that she didn’t want to be run again as a man since she is a woman. The officer asked if she didn’t want to go through the machine again would she be searched by another TSA member. “If you don’t want to be run as a man,” the officer said, “we’ll have to search you. Are you a man or a woman?”

Petosky was offered the choice to be searched by a male or female agent, and even with the decision up to her, she felt as if she was at a standstill.

“I kind of froze. I have never been flagged in the groin before and didn’t want to make a female officer touch there, but didn’t want a man to do the pat down,” she said.

After being taken into a room, having two body pat downs, and her luggage fully searched, Petosky was released 40 minutes later and missed her flight. She tweeted her experience the whole time; the TSA said they will look into the situation further.