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Airline Accused of Discrimination After Removing Black Passengers

Seven flyers claim discrimination as the reason they were removed from a Spirit Airlines flight, while others say the group was being unruly.

A group of seven black flyers are speaking out against Spirit Airlines, claiming they were removed by the captain over allegations of racism. The seven were escorted off Spirit Airlines Flight 868, scheduled for departure from Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW).

The group told ABC Affiliate KABC-TV they were boarding the flight when one of their seats was supposedly double-booked. The group claims as they tried to resolve the situation, a flight attendant became involved and made disparaging comments towards the group.

“A man was sitting in the wrong seat so he and the woman were supposed to switch seats, but they decided that they wanted to sit together,” Alexandra Wright, one of the flyers in the group, told KABC. “The flight attendant overheard the conversation. He came over and was just kind of making nasty remarks, making them switch.”

As a result, one of the couples in the group was asked to leave the aircraft. When they refused, police were called in to settle the situation. A flyer aboard the airplane posted a picture of police escorting the group off of the flight to his Twitter account, accusing the airline of being “racist.”

“I’m really humiliated,” Wright subsequently told CBS affiliate KCBS-TV. “Just for the simple fact that you hear about this type of stuff happening in America, discrimination issues and stuff like that, but to actually experience it first-hand.”

While the group claims discrimination, other flyers aboard the aircraft claim the situation was handled appropriately. Witnesses who spoke to KCBS claim the group was being disruptive over the incident. According to LAX Police, nobody in the group was cited or arrested. The aircraft departed LAX without further incident 45 minutes late. Spirit has not yet publicly commented on the case.

[Photo: Twitter / Tyler Grosso]

Comments are Closed.
Jane42 November 4, 2015

" If one group insisted on sitting together they should rejigged someone else and settled it that way. It’s not easy, but it’s a better solution imo." Why? Isn't the best solution that everyone just sit in their assigned seat? I am not sure if this was a double book or someone just not in their assigned seat. If someone wants to move to accommodate them, that is fine - but if not, that is their prerogative. I am not quite sure if it was one of the group in the wrong seat or someone else. Either way, the FA has the right to ask them to sit in their assigned seats. Kind of sounds like a kindergarten problem............ Either way, how this is a race situation, I am not sure.....

drvannostren November 4, 2015

I don't usually criticize the reporting, and I won't do that here either BUT, this story is VERY incomplete. The facts aren't all there. This is clearly gonna be he said/she said. One side claims racism, the other side claims that they were being unruly. I also don't usually blame the airline, but in this case, had they not double booked the seat the situation would've been completely avoided. It also doesn't sound like the FA did a great job in resolving it. If one group insisted on sitting together they should rejigged someone else and settled it that way. It's not easy, but it's a better solution imo.

Gringa November 4, 2015

You can't act like jerks and then pull out the race card.