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Attire and Health Surveillance for School-Going Kids2

Should children be restrained for airport search?

Posted by Sylveef on 2019-08-10 19:34:50

In the poll Airport Security and Kids6


in the message section


a comment was posted under the title ‘Slightly Different take on this Topic’ by Jay Rosen on July 23,2019:

First of all, parents of prepubescent children 11 and under should have the child pre restrained upon arrival to the airport. There's no reason that the children can't be restrained throughout the entire process. They are with their parents and under the parents supervision at all times. When they get to the security check, their hands should already be cuffed behind their backs. They will be used to this by the time they reach security.

I strongly disagree with the above:

Every person is born free: man, women and child, that's the message of World Freedom Day. Nobody can restrict, cuff or leash children. That would produce shooters. When they enter into adolescence, they would like to take revenge from the society by shooting people. See what happened in United States, France, England and so many other countries.

I take the JohnG family as example as well as so many other families. It has now become almost the norm (I have got stories from United States, Canada, Germany, Russia, South Africa, India, Papua New Guinea, Japan, Brazil) that children under the age of 11 strip to briefs/panties only (it is slightly better for safety and hygiene reasons than staying nude during the flight) as soon as they enter the airport terminal, barefooted, hair (of girls opened completely) and remain in that state through security, boarding and during the flight. Their bodies are almost exposed completely, which averts the risk of weapons/contraband carried on their persons. Hence, most of the time security is lenient on them letting them pass through quickly. Occasionally they are subjected to complete strip search/cavity search for which the parents must brief them and train them.

How long you are going to restrain people. They are going to grow up into adolescents and then what?

As everyone now accepts that undressing is an integral part of going to doctor, going to airport undressed should also be accepted as a routine thing. These days children of most families under the age of 11 remain in briefs/panties only inside their houses and backyards. This allows them freedom to play and exercise.

Freedom for kids would let them enjoy the whole process. Parents should train and indoctrinate the children on the process so that they do not resist the process. One time they will resist, but the next time they will accept. Even in the doctor’s office, at times parents have to undress their kids forcibly for the exam, but the next time they do it themselves.

The best way would be to have simulation (role play) in the form of game before a journey is scheduled. A family from South Africa/United States did this for another family from Norway and that worked.

It was further suggested in the same post:

Secondly, as opposed to having the children fully nude or dressed in underwear, which may be torn if forcibly removed, I think it would be best to have the children wear nothing but a good quality disposable diaper.

My take on diapers! They are unhygienic and would produce rashes. I have avoided them on my kids even during early infancy.

The solution:

a) Skip one meal just before long flight. Traveling empty stomach would avoid vomiting.

b) Let them consume little water and soft drinks before flight. That should decrease need for urination. They’ll get lots of things to eat and drink during the flight. Let them enjoy these fully.

c) Establish routines for using washroom:

i) Just before security

ii) Just before boarding

iii) Every 90 minutes during the flight

iv) Just after disembarking

Respect for the rights and the freedoms is the core value system of a decent and a democratic society and that includes children in that society, too.

Would like to have the take of the community on these ideas. Please correct me if I am going wrong anywhere. I am giving below the protocols, which I follow with my kids:

I have 2 girls, aged 5 and 8 years and a boy 6 years old. I have taught them that modesty has no place in office of doctor as well as airport and aircraft.

During pleasant weather, boy dresses in briefs, shorts, cotton socks and leather shoes; the girls in panties, miniskirts, cotton socks and leather shoes, while going to airport from hotel or personal residence. Disinfectant powder is applied to dry skin before putting on underwear and socks. All children are totally unclothed from the waist up. Girls have hair open, with no hair pins/hair clips, only plastic hair bands used to hold hair. If it is cold, I give them blankets to wrap around.

As soon as they enter the front door of airport lounge, the children remove shoes, socks, shorts/miniskirts, hair bands and blankets (if wrapped around). These items are now packed in checked baggage (blankets are too much for hand carry). They now pass through strong X rays and are unsafe to wear before 24 hours and even then after thoroughly washed.

The children are now barefoot and naked except briefs/panties. This is what the airport authorities want as they want to see them playing clad in minimum clothing to make sure they are not carrying any prohibited item. At the security, they are patted down. Sometimes they are required to lower briefs/panties to ankles for a thorough search. A couple of times they were required to step out of briefs/panties, but mostly they have a light search and allowed to proceed.

They play in the lounge to consume their fullest energy, without the restrictions of clothing. They get tired when it is boarding time. Upon entering the aircraft in just briefs/panties, I clean their feet with baby wipes. In the plane, they get blankets and sleep through the journey, keeping away from mischief.

At the destination I buy them flip-flops and if cold some towels to wrap around in order to reach destination.


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