We have all been witnesses as to how United Airlines executives appear to be tone deaf as to why the public is so outraged and contemptuous of its recent action of forcing a paying customer who was sitting down on a United plane, to be removed against his will because the airline needed room for four of its own employees. This public relations nightmare has been exacerbated by the CEO’s follow-up letter where he is attempting to justify/ excuse the lack of professional courtesy by his agents towards a paying client when he should be fully aware that these tactics were indefensible, period, end of story.
Fortunately, passengers were astute enough to film the entire event as the gentleman doctor of Asian decent was was being dragged across the ground, being pulled by his arms while screaming. While the video has gone viral in the USA, it is nothing in comparison to how it is being viewed in China. The tweeter feed is buzzing with comments along the lines. “and the U.S. dares to talk about “human rights.”
This is such a shameful instance to where it becomes obvious to the business community that the UA work environment/ culture requires a major overhaul. In some older blogs, I argue that businesses need to face up to the reality that developing a healthy positive work/ business culture, where the consumers and the employees are treated with respect and dignity, have to be part of its risk management plans.
And as you might guess, this incident with United Airlines is not an isolated event.
Here is the rest of the story…
On 1/7/16, Hugo Martin of the LA Times penned the following article,“The U.S. Department of Transportation has fined United Airlines $2.75 million over the carrier’s treatment of disabled passengers and for stranding passengers on delayed flights for more than three hours.”
“The federal agency said an investigation of United Airlines’ treatment of disabled passengers was sparked by “a significant increase in the number of disability-related complaints.”
“A review of these disability-related complaints revealed that United failed to provide passengers with disabilities prompt and adequate assistance with enplaning and deplaning aircraft,” the Transportation Department said in a statement.”
“Those complaints included an incident in October (2015) when a passenger with cerebral palsy was forced to crawl out of a United flight because airline crew failed to provide him with a special wheelchair that he requested. The airline publicly apologized to the flier a week later.””In an employee newsletter Thursday, United Airlines said it had begun testing a new smartphone app and other technology so that passengers and crew members can more quickly order wheelchairs on planes and in terminals.”