Dingell Calls for FBI, DHS to Conduct Thorough Audit of No-Fly and Selectee Lists to Protect Innocent Americans
Washington, August 23, 2021
WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (MI-12) sent a letter to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Director Christopher Wray and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas calling for a complete and thorough audit of the No-Fly and Selectee Lists to ensure innocent American citizens have not been wrongly included. The letter also requests additional information on the current records for these lists, how often these lists are vetted for errors, guidance provided to affected individual, and who this information is shared with outside the U.S. government.
Since September 11, numerous innocent individuals have been mistakenly added to the No Fly or Selectee Lists, including prominent individuals like Congressman John Lewis and Senator Ted Kennedy, causing significant hardship for too many Americans. As of June 17, 2016, there were approximately 81,000 known No-Fly List records and around 1,000 were U.S. citizens, according to answers from the FBI and National Counterterrorism Center in a Congressional inquiry. Amidst current events, we must use this list to keep our country safe and ensure we are tracking the correct individuals that pose threats, not unnecessarily barring innocent people from easily travelling.
“Over the years, these reports and stories of innocent doctors, professors, lawyers, and others who have been added to the No-Fly List or Selectee List—including many individuals from my district—have become far too common. Inaccuracies in the No-Fly List and Selectee List are deeply concerning, leaving labeled Americans with lasting ramifications and no means of addressing or challenging the validity of their status,” wrote Dingell.
“The 12th Congressional District in Michigan is proudly home to one of the largest Arab American population in the United States,” Dingell continued. “These are the same communities who are consistently, disproportionally impacted by watchlists and counterterrorism practices—and specifically the No-Fly List and Selectee List. This is simply wrong and not in line with our American values.”
Rep. Dingell previously led her colleagues in calling for enhanced due process protections for the No-Fly list.
Full text of the letter is available here.