Airline Uniforms are Keeping the Faith
For airlines that fly internationally, cultural sensitivity is occasionally part of employee training. We have already talked about Alaska Airlines eliminating prayer cards from their first class meal trays. While the Alaskan carrier abandoned the in-flight faith, other airlines have gone the next step to ensure a religious vacuum while flying on their birds.
The Polish flag-carrier, LOT, may be added to the list of airlines that walk the fine line of being politically correct while upholding consistent uniform guidelines. The airline has been involved in quite a firestorm recently by banning cabin crew from wearing religious symbols that are visible to passengers. After much debate in the deeply religious nation, the carrier decided to renege on their decision and maintain original policy.
The Warsaw-based airline is not the only carrier to run into similar issues. In 2006, British Airways was involved in a very similar situation. BA banned religious jewelery for all employees and after heated political discussion, also changed their minds and reinstated the secular pieces.
Last year, an Air France employee was released from her duties after she refused to remove her hijab on her first day of training. The airline has maintained its stance on uniform standards and have not changed their mind. According the Air France, uniform scarves are to be worn only as the company prescribes and unapproved headpieces are not part of the uniform.
LOT will be the first European Airline to take delivery of a Boeing 787; we wonder how many flight attendants on that inaugural will be kissing their crosses?
[Photo: LOT Polish]