Southwest Airlines reportedly booted a family with a disabled toddler off a flight — over fears the kid would remove his face masks, which he was sporting on the time.
Caroline Scott, of Northglenn, Colorado, suggested the airline about 3-year-old Orion’s sensory-processing dysfunction earlier than their flight to Florida on Friday, KDVR reported.
She additionally supplied a be aware from Orion’s physician and an occupational therapist amid fears that he may need bother protecting the masks on for the entire flight to Fort Lauderdale, in keeping with the outlet.
The family stated the boy was buckled in his seat and had his masks on when a Southwest worker out of the blue ordered them off the aircraft on the captain’s request.
“She said, ‘You have to get off the plane. The captain doesn’t feel comfortable with your family on it,’” Caroline stated. “We were not de-boarded for behaviors, but pre-emptively in case he might take off his mask, and he’s also three.”
The Federal Aviation Administration requires all passengers aged 2 and older to put on a face masks.
“It’s not OK. There was no empathy. There was no understanding. We were just humiliated. It was traumatizing and humiliating,” the livid mother advised KDVR.
“We thought we were doing the right thing and for being forefront and honest, we were punished for it,” she added.
The family booked a flight on United for $1,700 the next day, however this time they didn’t inform the airline about Orion’s dysfunction and the flight went off with no issues.
“We’re never going to disclose again, and that’s a shame because it should be, ‘How can we support people who need extra support?’ Not let’s kick them off the plane. No family should have to go through this,” Caroline stated.
In a press release, Southwest stated it “regrets any inconvenience this family skilled whereas touring, and our Customer Relations Team is contacting the family immediately relating to their expertise.
“Southwest Employees are working each day to ensure the requirements of the federal mask mandate with sensitivity during these challenging times,” the corporate stated.
“We appreciate the ongoing understanding and cooperation among our Customers and Employees as we work collectively to support the comfort and wellbeing of all who travel with us during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” it added.
The incident came about two days earlier than Southwest refused to allow an Iowa family to board a flight as a result of their 5-year-old autistic boy couldn’t put on a masks.
Cody and Paige Petek and their two youngsters had been in St. Louis for a connecting flight house to the Des Moines International Airport on Sunday after they had been turned away, KCCI reported.
Under Transportation Security Administration coverage, vacationers with disabilities who can not put on a masks resulting from their situation usually are not required to, in keeping with the report.
The airline stated the kid didn’t have a face masks exemption.
“Southwest Airlines considers applications for exemptions from this mask requirement from passengers with a disability who cannot wear a mask, or who cannot safely wear a mask because of the disability,” it advised KCCI.
“In this case, a traveler was not wearing a face covering prior to boarding and did not have an exemption to the federal mask mandate,” it added.
The airline didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark from The Post about whether or not Orion’s incapacity is taken into account an exemption.