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Disgusting Discrimination (allegation) on Flight 996

Disgusting Discrimination (allegation) on Flight 996

Old Oct 19, 17, 3:37 pm
  #1  
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Disgusting Discrimination (allegation) on Flight 996

Worst decision ever: Upgrade to business from EZE to DFW


As I returned from my Father’s funeral in Argentina, Iupgraded my family and myself to business class. The flight was going verypleasantly while I was under the care of <redacted>. Everything tooka horrific turn once I woke up and decided to brush my teeth. I was first inline waiting for the bathroom and the seatbelt sign was off. There was a gentlemanon the other side of the bathroom waiting as well. He knew I was ahead of him.Suddenly, out of nowhere, came a flight attendant who asked me for my seatnumber. I said 9A. She then told me to go to the bathroom in the back of theplane. The flight attendant next to her corrected her, but she continued toinsist twice that I should go to the back of the plane. Finally she realizedthat I would not go to the back of the plane. She then sternly told me I shouldgo to the bathroom across the hallway. I said that I wanted to wait for thisbathroom because I was next in line. She sternly directed me to go to the otherbathroom, and she stated that there was no one in that bathroom. When I gotthere the bathroom was occupied and it had been all along. She lied to me. Thegentleman who was in line behind, got to use the bathroom before me. I feelthat I was victimized by a bully who targeted me for my race as well as forreverse discrimination regarding gender. The crew in the AA Business class onthe flight staff was well aware of the issue and they can identify her. She,however, would not give me her name. Ithen expressed my concern to the Purser who thought she could make the problemgo away by acting as if the flight attendant acted in her own right. I wasappalled. As a diverse female professional and mother of 2 diverse daughters, Icannot allow this to take place. As a humanbeing I cannot allow this type of abuse to be tolerated anywhere. At school Itell my kids to stand up to bullies and if someone is bullying somebody else,they should call them out. Not only was there a bully among AA Flight 996 crew, there were other flight attendants who covered for her. I am deeply saddenedthat my family and I have to use American airlines for our future travel. I sent my complaint to AA Customer Relations, and they were completely dismissive. IS THERE ANY WAY TO ESCALATE THIS? I really don't want to fly American ever again with how they have addressed this. That woman needs to be accountable for her actions.


Last edited by dstan; Oct 19, 17 at 4:24 pm Reason: AA employee name redacted
marinaperry is offline  
Old Oct 19, 17, 4:02 pm
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What can you say, American is just a horrible airline on so many different levels. Much of this stems from the fact that they simply don't care about their customers. Next time, record it with your phone and post it on YouTube. That's the only way they'll ever admit they were wrong.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:09 pm
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OP - Welcome to FT and sorry for your loss. Hopefully you come back to participate in this discussion, otherwise this thread will go where many others like it have before: nowhere.

This is a he said / she said situation - no way anyone here is going to have a proper understanding of the situation.

From what I can tell, sounds like OP, travelling back from what was likely an emotional time, had to wait a few minutes longer to access a lav than she should have as a result of some bad info from a FA. Misunderstandings happen...
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:09 pm
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Ms. Perry

We are a forum for frequent travelers who exchange ideas. This is not a way to contact American Airlines.

I'm not sure what to say of your experience as I was not there. I will say that some of us, including myself, sometimes make conclusions based on perceptions that might not be fully accurate.

I don't understand why you believe there was some form of discrimination. In my experience, most of the passengers in business on AA flights to/from deep South America are Hispanic. When I traveled on AA in business to Hong Kong, I believe most of the other passengers were Asian. As these flights are overnight, many people are dressed very casually, so I don't think there would be much perception of clothing.

Sometimes, however, some of the flight attendants on long haul AA flights can get cranky. I wasn't particularly happy with the service I had on a recent long haul flight. The flight attendant ignored me and I had to go to the galley anytime I wanted anything but I don't think it was because I was a white guy.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:22 pm
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Take them to court. You are entitled to be compensated for the damages you were forced to suffer in this horriifc incident.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:27 pm
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The name of an AA employee has been redacted per the FlyerTalk Rules: https://www.flyertalk.com/help/rules.php#privacy


Members are invited to continue to provide constructive advice to the OP about ways to pursue this further with AA. Those who have already provided helpful comments are thanked.

/Moderator
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:28 pm
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Originally Posted by bse118 View Post
OP - Welcome to FT and sorry for your loss. Hopefully you come back to participate in this discussion, otherwise this thread will go where many others like it have before: nowhere.

This is a he said / she said situation - no way anyone here is going to have a proper understanding of the situation.

From what I can tell, sounds like OP, travelling back from what was likely an emotional time, had to wait a few minutes longer to access a lav than she should have as a result of some bad info from a FA. Misunderstandings happen...
Oh no. This was clearly not a misunderstanding. Please do not assume that I cannot separate emotions from facts.
Thanks,
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:36 pm
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Originally Posted by C17PSGR View Post
Ms. Perry

We are a forum for frequent travelers who exchange ideas. This is not a way to contact American Airlines.

I'm not sure what to say of your experience as I was not there. I will say that some of us, including myself, sometimes make conclusions based on perceptions that might not be fully accurate.

I don't understand why you believe there was some form of discrimination. In my experience, most of the passengers in business on AA flights to/from deep South America are Hispanic. When I traveled on AA in business to Hong Kong, I believe most of the other passengers were Asian. As these flights are overnight, many people are dressed very casually, so I don't think there would be much perception of clothing.

Sometimes, however, some of the flight attendants on long haul AA flights can get cranky. I wasn't particularly happy with the service I had on a recent long haul flight. The flight attendant ignored me and I had to go to the galley anytime I wanted anything but I don't think it was because I was a white guy.
Let me tell you that I am a frequent flyer as well and that is why I am posting in this forum. This flight attendant was Caucasian and a female. Definitely Caucasian. Your assumption that people traveling on international flight are from the ethnicity that the flight originated, is ill advised. This was not the case. It is a fact that I had bought the right to use that bathroom so she had no right to send me to the back of the plane 3 times. Crankiness is not an excuse for anything. There are unemployed people who would love to have her job and she should not be in it if she is not fit to be in a client facing servicing position. Fortunately America has rules and laws against these types of people. Unfortunately American Airlines does not care. That is the bottom line.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:45 pm
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You're lumping in an airline based on one bad experience with one FA. I don't think you can say AA (an airline of tens of thousands of employees) is discriminatory or doesn't care about passengers based on this experience. Every big company has bad apples. That being said, you should absolutely reach out and complain through official channels if you felt you've been wronged. Judge them based on their response.

None of us were there so it's difficult for us to tell whether this was a miscommunication (ie the FA tried to help you by sending you to the other bathroom because he/she thought it was empty) or whether it was something more sinister. I fly hundreds of thousands of miles with American each year and have never seen an FA blatantly / purposefully send someone to another bathroom because of discrimination. That's not to say it can't happen.

I hear you with being annoyed about being asked / challenged on being in the business class area. It happened to me twice on a recent Swiss flight and the second time, I acted really offended. It just happened to be that I was in the last row of business and both times the FAs on the other aisle didn't know I hadn't just pulled back the curtain to use the bathrooms up front. Afterwards they were apologetic when I said something. That being said, I'd rather have them police the bathrooms because the alternative is a steady stream of economy passengers using business lavatories and a line. Those in business pay for more bathrooms per capita and the rules should be enforced.
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Last edited by lds89; Oct 19, 17 at 5:01 pm
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:47 pm
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Originally Posted by Allan38103 View Post
Take them to court. You are entitled to be compensated for the damages you were forced to suffer in this horriifc incident.
You are joking right ?
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:49 pm
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OP, sorry for your experience. AA is generally a wonderful airline and it is too bad your flight fell short of your expectations.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 4:56 pm
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As others have said, there is a limit to how much we can understand the circumstance of what happened as we were not present at the time. I am concerned that anything I say may also be unhelpful and upsetting (even if not intended to be). It is of course also much easier to suggest things after the event as well.

Definitely do complain as it is your right, but I do advise about getting too invested in this complaint. You may well find it upsetting further if the complaint is not meant with the appropriate sympathetic and understanding response from AA. You have already mentioned another example of the Purser not taking due care and attention to look into this. In my opinion this response by the Purser is equally bad if not worse as it may re-inforce this negative behaviour and suggest it is acceptable. The dismissive attitude is to my mind wholly unacceptable.

My response would have been to have been to have explained to the staff that I am seated in this cabin and that this is the appropriate W/C for the cabin. Why would I go to a lower class cabin and why are you advising me of this? I wonder whether the crew that advised you of using the back of plane was a much older lady who was embarassed to be corrected by a more junior member of staff, where she had originally thought (incorrectly, either by mishearing or misunderstanding) from your response and believing you were in an economy seat.

I do not know how you can escalate this with AA. But I think they need to investigate further. I would suggest a response explaining why their crew would behave in this way.

I can't comment on discrimination. I have been discriminated my whole life on a whole manner of things (like others) and do not complain as I don't believe it would do any good. My suggestion would be to fly with another airline in future to reach some closure if AA cannot respond to your satisfaction. It would serve them right for responding so poorly to your complaint. I would think if this person continues to behave in a poor manner that they would be fired sooner rather than later.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 5:08 pm
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Originally Posted by marinaperry View Post
This flight attendant was Caucasian and a female. Definitely Caucasian.
I didn't comment about the race or ethnicity of the flight attendant.

Originally Posted by marinaperry View Post
Your assumption that people traveling on international flight are from the ethnicity that the flight originated, is ill advised.
That's not an assumption and hardly ill advised. I have flown 3 million miles on American Airlines. I probably have another several hundred thousand on other airlines. I have flown 175,000 miles this year. I have flown through AA's primary Latin American hub of Miami probably 30 times this year.

I can't speak to your flight as I wasn't on it but I believe that a substantial percentage of passengers flying in business on American's deep South American routes (SCL/EZE) are Hispanic. It's my experience that many, perhaps most of the FA's on those routes are also Hispanic. To be able to work a long haul route like DFW-EZE, the flight attendants will either be language speakers or have significant seniority. If they didn't like South Americans or people of Hispanic ethnicity, they would bid another route.

I'm not here to excuse rudeness or poor customer service. As I mentioned, in my last long haul flight, I felt the flight attendants weren't very good. I don't think, however, that it had anything to do with my ethnicity.

One other note: I haven't been on the reconfigured 777-200 that I believe flies DFW-EZE. However, on the 777-300, the bathrooms in the business cabin are not the same on both sides. One is bigger and better for changing in my experience. I've certainly had FA's point me to the other side in various situations and discovered someone was already in line. It's somewhat like the line at the grocery store -- you switch lines because you believe one is quicker and it doesn't turn out as expected sometimes.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 5:11 pm
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OP - as much as I feel for you (and sorry for your loss), there was nothing suggesting the FA picked on you because of your race. And FWIW - AA would rather compensate on something more tangible (like a broken seat) rather than any form of confrontations.

Your only choice, really, is to pick another airline.

Originally Posted by Allan38103 View Post
Take them to court. You are entitled to be compensated for the damages you were forced to suffer in this horriifc incident.
Where is the evidence?

FWIW - even taken everything OP said as true, it is shy to make a discrimination case.

There is nothing implicating the incident was a result of a racial discrimination.

Simply because OP felt that does not make a case.
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Old Oct 19, 17, 6:04 pm
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Originally Posted by marinaperry View Post
Oh no. This was clearly not a misunderstanding. Please do not assume that I cannot separate emotions from facts.
Thanks,
(bolding mine) I didn't say that anywhere.

Nobody on this board can say what the facts were. It's he said / she said.

What I can say is that I have no facts to say it was discrimination (or not). But in most situations, misunderstanding or miscommunication, complicated in this case by the FA giving you bad information, is much more likely than discrimination...

May I ask what you want the airline to do in response to your messages? It is extremely unlikely that they will agree that discrimination happened, and they aren't going to materially compensate you because you had to wait a few extra minutes for the lav. If you have some idea what you are looking for - this community may be able to give you better advice.

----
As for using lavs in the rear of the cabin - if I'm in J on a long-haul, and the J lavs have a line, but the ones in back are open, I will happily walk back.
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Last edited by bse118; Oct 19, 17 at 6:07 pm Reason: typo
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