ACT Party leader David Seymour says “creepy, American-style” scanners have no place in New Zealand airports.
The full body “naked” scanners will be rolled out at airports across New Zealand over the next two years after completing a trial at Wellington Airport.
The advanced imaging technology scanners will be installed at Auckland Airport’s international terminal in 2019, with Christchurch, Dunedin, Queenstown and Wellington to follow the year after.
But Mr Seymour says they have no place in New Zealand.
“It’s a sense of violation,” he told RadioLIVE.
The ACT politician, who has visited the United States on numerous occasions, says he always feels relieved when returning to New Zealand’s less invasive airport security.
The new generation of scanners have been featured in American airports since 2010, after a man snuck plastic explosives through security by hiding them in his underwear. He attempted to detonate the explosives while on a plane to Detroit.
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But Mr Seymour says the advanced scanners won’t improve security and therefore will be a giant waste of taxpayer money.
“There is no known danger that people are taking weapons or could take weapons through the existing security that we have,” he said.
He told RadioLIVE that the ACT Party stands against the Government spending money on a feature that is “going to invade our privacy, just because”.
The scanners use non-ionizing radiation to produce a genderless image, which highlights areas of the body that may need further inspection from staff.
While the scanners won’t be mandatory for travellers, those who refuse will be required to be pat down by staff.
“The invasion of your dignity and privacy does not justify any demonstrated security benefit. It’s just laziness on the part of the Government, imposing it upon us because they can,” Mr Seymour said.
Listen to the full interview with David Seymour above.
The Long Lunch with Carly Flynn, in for Wendyl Nissen, 12pm - 3pm on RadioLIVE and streaming live to the rova app on Android and iPhone.