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TSA union calls for armed police at U.S. airport checkpoints

Nov. 3, 2013 at 10:18 AM

WASHINGTON, Nov. 3 (UPI) -- Armed guards should be posted at U.S. airport security checkpoints, the union that represents Transportation Security Administration agents said.

David Cox, president of the American Federation of Government Employees, said this weekend the shooting at Los Angeles International Airport -- in which a TSA agent was killed and two were wounded -- proved the necessity of standardizing security at the nation's airport.

"Every local airport has its own security arrangement with local police or some type of contract security force," said Cox. "There is no standardization throughout the country. Every airport operates differently."

Paul Ciancia, 23, was wounded in a shootout with police after he allegedly shot and killed TSA agent Gerardo Hernandez, 39, and wounded several other people, including two TSA agents.

Cox said members of his union have not requested that they be permitted to carry guns, but there was a consensus to have police or armed security on hand to handle any trouble.

TSA administrators said this weekend there were no immediate plans change the agency's security protocol, but said passengers flying this week would no doubt see additional security at airports nationwide, USA Today reported Sunday.

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