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TSA Fires 14 After Drinking Incident

Travelers Today       By    Carly Okyle

Updated: Jul 01, 2012 02:13 AM EDT

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After having to fire workers for sleeping on the job and firing more employees for being implicated in a bribery scandal, the Associated Press is reporting that the Transportation Security Administration is now firing eight federal air marshals in the New York office, including a supervisor, for allegedly drinking alcohol during a training day. In addition, the TSA is suspending six more individuals for not reporting the misconduct, the agency said on Friday.

While one of the employees accused had probationary status and was therefore immediately fired, all of the other workers can appeal the decision. At the time the AP article was written, the TSA wasn't sure if any workers had retained attorneys.

The TSA said that the workers were drinking at a restaurant in February. The article said that "the incident was reported to a website that allows employees to alert leadership of inappropriate behavior."

While none of the workers was scheduled for flight duty on the day of the incident, but according to the TSA, consumption of alcohol is forbidden anytime they are on the job.

The agency said that some of the marshals had their service weapons with them at the restaurant, and that they were required to relinquish those weapons, along with their credentials, when they were fired.

"TSA holds all of its employees to the highest professional and ethical standards and has zero tolerance for misconduct in the workplace," said Nico Melendez, an agency spokesman. "TSA's decision to remove the individuals involved in the misconduct affirms our strong commitment to the highest standards of conduct and accountability."

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