Dems probe claims of religious bias in DHS 'trusted traveler' program
Source: The Hill
By Melanie Zanona - 04/21/17 02:04 PM EDT
A group of Senate Democrats is demanding to know whether some members of an expedited airport screening program have had their status revoked because of their religion.
In a letter to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Friday, lawmakers pressed the agency on media reports that individuals with Arab- and Muslim-sounding names are having their membership to the Global Entry program revoked without explanation.
They said allegations that the decisions were based on religion would be discriminatory and likely violate the constitution. The group is seeking information from DHS Secretary John Kelly, by May 14, about how many individuals have had their Global Entry membership taken away and why their status was revoked.
“Removing people from the Global Entry Program because of their ethnicity or religion is not only immoral, it also likely violates the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution,” the senators wrote. “Since President Trump took office, members of the Arab and Muslim community have justifiably felt under attack.”