MONTREAL -- Federal Transport Minister Jean Lapierre wants a report explaining how security uniforms and badges disappeared from airports across Canada, CBC News reported.
More than 1,000 uniforms and parts of uniforms were lost or stolen, and nearly 100 security badges went missing over a nine-month period, CBC News reported after uncovering documents from the federal agency responsible for making air travel safe.
"I want a report by Monday morning on all the details of all those elements," Lapierre said when asked for his reaction on Saturday.
Lapierre also gave assurances that all airports in Canada are "now double checking the identity of every employee that comes in."
quote:Transport Minister not worried by uniform thefts CTV.ca News Staff
Transport Minister Jean Lapierre says Canadians don't have to worry about security problems at Canadian airports due to missing security uniforms.
"After reviewing the report with my officials, I am satisfied that all necessary actions on this issue are being taken to maintain an appropriate level of security at Canadian airports," he said Monday in a news release.
Lapierre was given a report by the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority about the recent misplacement of hundreds of uniforms and badges worn by screeners.
He says Canadians they have nothing to worry about and that authorities will undertake an audit of the current uniform program and existing controls.
The disappearances sparked fears they uniforms could fall into the hands of terrorists, who might try to use them to get close to a potential target, such as a jetliner.
Deputy Conservative Leader Peter MacKay asked Lapierre about the uniforms in Parliament's Question Period on Monday.
"These items, in the hands of terrorists, represent a real threat to Canada and her allies. Why was this government so unaware and so ineffective and why weren't the RCMP called in to investigate this breach?" MacKay asked.
Lapierre responded: "We're not talking about 1,100 uniforms, we're talking about parts of uniforms."
"You must realize that most of them are items like pants, like shirts. And when you talk about badges I mean, we are not talking about badges, we are talking about logos."
In the report, CASTA said: "CATSA issues 20 uniform pieces to each screening officer. There are currently approximately 4,000 screening officers who have been issued uniforms. During the period covered by the access to information request, approximately 75,000 uniform items had been issued to screening officers.
"A total of 1127 uniform items had been reported lost or stolen."
It broke those totals down as follows:
639 name tags bearing only the first name of the screening officer, 130 plain navy blue clip-on ties, 84 shoulder boards, 23 pairs of navy blue cargo pants, 17 navy blue belts, and 8 pairs of black steel-toe shoes.
It said the only complete uniform missing was lost in a house fire.