Zainab Merchant, 27, was traveling from Boston to Washington, D.C. for delivering a talk when she was stopped at the airport by the airport security – and made to show her bloodied pad during the search.
The Harvard graduate student expressed how she felt extremely violated when the security officials further asked her to drop her pants, underwear and eventually her bloodied pad.
The Transportation Security Administration, an organization that is known to be gruesome and advocate Islamophobia came under worldwide attention again after treating a Muslim woman horrifically. Zainab, a mother of three, was on her period while traveling from Boston to D.C.. The TSA demanded her to show her bloodied pad for ‘security purposes’.
This was not the only horrific incident she had to face due to the aggressive behavior of the Transportation Security Administration, TSA. Zainab revealed she has faced such incidents repeatedly; nearly all her air travels have been extremely challenging.
In an interview with HuffPost, Zainab described how she was taken into the backroom and asked to strip. Security officials tried to intimidate her and did not even allow her to call her lawyer. After this act of violation, the officials covered their badges with their hands, so Zainab could not see their names as she left.
The American Civil Liberties Union extended solidarity with Zainab Merchant and wrote an extensive complaint to the Inspector General of the Department of Homeland security. The complaint jotted down Merchant’s and her family’s numerous encounters with the TSA that were intrusive and incredibly violating.
The complaint demanded an immediate accountability of the Transportation Security Administration. The ACLU has also called for a thorough investigation into the conduct of TSA and CBP officers, and for the release of Zainab Merchant’s previous records.
The full complaint can be read here.
ACLU has released a video on the incident. Watch it here: