Anti-Semitic slur by Flight Attendant

 
Old Feb 29, 12, 3:58 am
  #1  
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Anti-Semitic slur by Flight Attendant

I traveled to Las Vegas on Continental Flight 1569, along with a colleague of mine. We are both Orthodox Jews and wear yarmulkas which represent our Judaism. Upon boarding the flight we had a "typical" altercation with one of the other FA related to the overhead storage (my colleague attempted to help me stow my luggage, but the FA insisted that she do it). Okay, not a big deal - has happened before, will probably happen again.

We land in Las Vegas, deplane and head out to the car rental, when I notice I forgot a small item on board. All passengers had deplaned, so it was me, some ground staff, FA's and a pilot still gathering their belongings. As I'm walking down the jetway, I very clearly hear one of the FA's say to her colleagues "I hate Jewish people.. There I said it". Now the thing is, her back was to the plane (she was standing next to that door with the luggage chute), so she never saw me. I believe her colleagues were pretty shocked by the comments as they tried to get me in and out very quickly. When I came back off the airplane and came to my senses as to the severity of the comment, the FA was gone. I really don't know what I would have said to her. I can't remember ever feeling so appalled.

I am not one looking for media attention or even for this woman to lose her job. I truly believe that this is related to the airlines poor training and again, a lack of human beings being able to accept each other, regardless of religion and race. I will forward this letter to the powers that be at United, in hopes that before they invest money into fancy planes and iPhone apps , they get back to teaching the basics of how to treat a customer and fellow human being.

AVIZ
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Old Feb 29, 12, 4:05 am
  #2  
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Originally Posted by AVIZ View Post
I traveled to Las Vegas on Continental Flight 1569, along with a colleague of mine. We are both Orthodox Jews and wear yarmulkas which represent our Judaism. Upon boarding the flight we had a "typical" altercation with one of the other FA related to the overhead storage (my colleague attempted to help me stow my luggage, but the FA insisted that she do it). Okay, not a big deal - has happened before, will probably happen again.

We land in Las Vegas, deplane and head out to the car rental, when I notice I forgot a small item on board. All passengers had deplaned, so it was me, some ground staff, FA's and a pilot still gathering their belongings. As I'm walking down the jetway, I very clearly hear one of the FA's say to her colleagues "I hate Jewish people.. There I said it". Now the thing is, her back was to the plane (she was standing next to that door with the luggage chute), so she never saw me. I believe her colleagues were pretty shocked by the comments as they tried to get me in and out very quickly. When I came back off the airplane and came to my senses as to the severity of the comment, the FA was gone. I really don't know what I would have said to her. I can't remember ever feeling so appalled.

I am not one looking for media attention or even for this woman to lose her job. I truly believe that this is related to the airlines poor training and again, a lack of human beings being able to accept each other, regardless of religion and race. I will forward this letter to the powers that be at United, in hopes that before they invest money into fancy planes and iPhone apps , they get back to teaching the basics of how to treat a customer and fellow human being.

AVIZ
Is it because of the airline's poor training, or is it because the individual lacks tact and/or is a complete moron? As a fellow Jew, surely the airline cannot vet every single employee to see if they are biggots against one or more groups of people. If I had heard that remark, I prolly would've turned around and said I hate old, crotchy, FAs, but that wouldn't have gotten me very far. You can try to help correct ignorance, but you cannot help people that don't want to be helped. Best to let CO/UA deal w/ the employee.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 4:25 am
  #3  
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Originally Posted by uxb View Post
Is it because of the airline's poor training, or is it because the individual lacks tact and/or is a complete moron? As a fellow Jew, surely the airline cannot vet every single employee to see if they are biggots against one or more groups of people. If I had heard that remark, I prolly would've turned around and said I hate old, crotchy, FAs, but that wouldn't have gotten me very far. You can try to help correct ignorance, but you cannot help people that don't want to be helped. Best to let CO/UA deal w/ the employee.

Poor training for sure. I relayed the story on another thread of a crew from SFO-EWR gregariously yelling back and forth at each other in Spanish. I don't speak Spanish fluently but understand it a bit - and clearly heard multiple curse words and slurs that they NEVER would've gotten away with in English... They seemed to think that there was no way that others A) could hear them (I was in row 4) and B) that they would understand Spanish.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 4:34 am
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Sorry this happened to you, clearly the FA was out of line.


I don't think this is really a training issue though. I don't think any company 'trains' employees to not be racist, etc. While an employee should not talk like this at anytime while at work (and hopefully not at home either), I think it is slightly 'less bad' that the FA said this at a time when all passengers should have been gone. (OT to the bulk of your post, but I am surprised that you were allowed back on the plane so long after de-planing)
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Old Feb 29, 12, 4:35 am
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Originally Posted by glx View Post
Poor training for sure. I relayed the story on another thread of a crew from SFO-EWR gregariously yelling back and forth at each other in Spanish. I don't speak Spanish fluently but understand it a bit - and clearly heard multiple curse words and slurs that they NEVER would've gotten away with in English... They seemed to think that there was no way that others A) could hear them (I was in row 4) and B) that they would understand Spanish.
Curse words are one thing, but you cannot correct a person's beliefs with corporate training alone. A person should want to change their own beliefs. Or, the person should know that their beliefs are not PC, and they should have common sense to not share with others. There is no amount of training in the world that could keep a biggot's mouth shut. If there were, then biggots would not be so damn easy to spot.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 4:47 am
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I am very saddened to hear your story. Please do let UA know and insist on a response.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 5:10 am
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Wow. You had an awesome opportunity to yell out "La Chaim!" and scare the heck out of her.

Replace Jewish with fat/old/childen/black/white/asian etc. Can't train that away.

But, I suggest confronting unprofessional behavior "in the moment".
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Old Feb 29, 12, 5:35 am
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Originally Posted by AVIZ View Post
I traveled to Las Vegas on Continental Flight 1569, along with a colleague of mine. We are both Orthodox Jews and wear yarmulkas which represent our Judaism. Upon boarding the flight we had a "typical" altercation with one of the other FA related to the overhead storage (my colleague attempted to help me stow my luggage, but the FA insisted that she do it). Okay, not a big deal - has happened before, will probably happen again.

We land in Las Vegas, deplane and head out to the car rental, when I notice I forgot a small item on board. All passengers had deplaned, so it was me, some ground staff, FA's and a pilot still gathering their belongings. As I'm walking down the jetway, I very clearly hear one of the FA's say to her colleagues "I hate Jewish people.. There I said it". Now the thing is, her back was to the plane (she was standing next to that door with the luggage chute), so she never saw me. I believe her colleagues were pretty shocked by the comments as they tried to get me in and out very quickly. When I came back off the airplane and came to my senses as to the severity of the comment, the FA was gone. I really don't know what I would have said to her. I can't remember ever feeling so appalled.

I am not one looking for media attention or even for this woman to lose her job. I truly believe that this is related to the airlines poor training and again, a lack of human beings being able to accept each other, regardless of religion and race. I will forward this letter to the powers that be at United, in hopes that before they invest money into fancy planes and iPhone apps , they get back to teaching the basics of how to treat a customer and fellow human being.

AVIZ
Just walk away... Everybody has a right to hate anyone. Hasn't your mom ever taught you sticks and stone may break my bones but your words will never hurt me. If she didn't then considered that a lesson. Hatred will be here to stay no matter what anyone says. Its built into our genes whether you like it or not. Either learn to ignore or you will be fighting everyone who hates you.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 5:43 am
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I am sorry this happened to you. Definitely report this behavior
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Old Feb 29, 12, 6:11 am
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I am of two minds about this.

A) You can report this behavior to UA and they will crack down on it but it does nothing to help the FA change her position.

b) You can do nothing, but that doesn't help the FA change her beliefs either.

I would report the slur, but not include identifying information of the FA. Maybe that will encourage UA to introduce some training.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 6:56 am
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Originally Posted by redreeper View Post
Wow. You had an awesome opportunity to yell out "La Chaim!" and scare the heck out of her.


I flew ORD-FRA in the exit row, and two formerly Paris domiciled FA's were in the jump seats continually making catty comments about the airline and passengers in French. I feigned ignorance, but when deplaning I thanked them for the flight and wished them a nice day. In French.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 7:48 am
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Regardless of whether you believe this incident is an inevitable consequence of human behavior or an inexcusable outrage, the fact is that UaCo has a code of conduct for its employees, and this type of behavior is clearly in violation of that code.

And with good reason. Whatever the individual does on their own time is their business, but as soon as they put on the uniform and represent it, they have an obligation to act in a professional and decent manner.

Any bigotry on the part of even one rogue individual is, unfortunately, a mark on the good name of the company.

I strongly suggest you report the incident.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 7:54 am
  #13  
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Originally Posted by TWA Fan 1 View Post
Regardless of whether you believe this incident is an inevitable consequence of human behavior or an inexcusable outrage, the fact is that UaCo has a code of conduct for its employees, and this type of behavior is clearly in violation of that code.

And with good reason. Whatever the individual does on their own time is their business, but as soon as they put on the uniform and represent it, they have an obligation to act in a professional and decent manner.

Any bigotry on the part of even one rogue individual is, unfortunately, a mark on the good name of the company.

I strongly suggest you report the incident.
+1, if that wasn't made clear in my initial response.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 8:09 am
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Quite saddened to hear this, especially since I have met so many FAs on CO specifically who love Jews, and are fascinated by my religion and culture. Many on the TLV routes are so happy to talk to me about what it means to be a religious Jew, talk about Israel, etc. I even had this on EWR-ZRH a lot (before it became a UA flight). Real shame to hear that.
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Old Feb 29, 12, 8:10 am
  #15  
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Originally Posted by uxb View Post
Curse words are one thing, but you cannot correct a person's beliefs with corporate training alone. A person should want to change their own beliefs. Or, the person should know that their beliefs are not PC, and they should have common sense to not share with others. There is no amount of training in the world that could keep a biggot's mouth shut. If there were, then biggots would not be so damn easy to spot.
Couldn't agree with you more, but if the person doesn't have the common sense to STFU then they shouldn't be working in a customer-facing job.
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