If you’re traveling by plane in the United States, you’ll undergo a TSA screening that always involves at least a little verbal communication. Yet, for some people with disabilities, verbal communication is difficult or impossible, making it challenging to communicate with TSA officers about this disability. In such situations, TSA screenings become inaccessible for some people.
In response to this, some states have offered a “communication impediment designation” addition for official IDs. This way, if a person cannot communicate verbally, their ID can communicate their situation in writing.
Since this designation is not widely known, the TSA will need to train its officers to check passengers’ IDs for a “communication impediment designation.” Once this procedure kicks off, TSA officers will have an easy way to know if a traveler has communication challenges and can make that traveler’s experience more manageable.
The TSA had indicated its support, stating, “We are committed to helping individuals with disabilities navigate the travel screening process and to ensuring that all passengers, regardless of their personal situations and needs, are treated with dignity, respect and courtesy.
In the future, the TSA may make the “communication impediment designations,” even easier for officers to spot by ensuring this designation shows up as part of a TSA ID scan.