Thursday, January 5th, 2006
Update: SkyWest Apologizes for Breast Incident
Here is an update to SkyWest’s repeated requests for a mother to stop breastfeeding while on a flight from Fresno, Calif. to San Francisco last month. The mother received a written apology from SkyWest. Here are quotes from the letter, courtesy of The Eureka Reporter:
"’The only time a flight attendant should ask a passenger to stop breast-feeding is when the activity presents a safety hazard to the mother, child or other passengers. [...] If we receive a complaint from passengers about a mother who is breast-feeding, we will attempt to make everyone comfortable by offering the mother a blanket for her privacy and/or moving the offended passenger(s) to another seat, if possible. However, if the situation cannot be resolved in a manner that makes everyone comfortable, then the other passengers simply have to live with their discomfort, as we respect the rights of a nursing mother." [emphasis added]
The mother is satisfied with the apology, and a $100 gift certificate, and will be giving the airline a second chance.
The letter is a nice first step, but I’d like to know how the airline educates its staff about its breastfeeding policy and know that the airline will be refreshing that piece of training with all in-flight staff. If not, then legal action should be considered because that is one thing corporations understand. When there is one uninformed employee, there is likely more than one. The airline should do its best to avoid future discrimination. A letter and gift certificate is not its best.