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NeBaNi
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Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:28 am

On a flight from DTW to IAH, the family wasn't seated together, and when a woman in an adjacent seat row swapped seats so a family member could sit next to the autistic passenger, a flight attendant demanded they move back their original seats. Even after the other passengers defended the family, and after a supervisor who boarded the plane instructed the FA to allow the seat swap, the FA got the pilots involved, and one pilot made everybody deplane, refused to fly the plane and left the terminal with his crew. A replacement crew was found and the flight took off 2 hours later.

The article below has the details:
https://renespoints.boardingarea.com/2019/08/19/autistic-passengers-family-claims-delta-skywest-discriminated-against-them/
A couple of excerpts:
In their group was [Ayola's] brother who has autism spectrum disorder. “He is essentially nonverbal,” he explained, “making him unable to express himself oftentimes. He suffers from OCD, sensory overload, and many other symptoms that can make air travel particularly difficult for him. For his safety and the safety of those around him, it is important that he sit with a family member on flights.”

A woman seated in an adjacent row was willing to switch seats so two Isola family members could sit together.

This, for some reason, irked a flight attendant, who allegedly demanded Mr. Isola’s brother move back to his original seat. “We explained to her that he has special needs and that this small accommodation would be necessary,” he said, “however she continued to raise hell about passengers switching seats.” Fellow passengers came to the Isola party’s defense.

Twenty minutes later, a supervisor boarded the plane and instructed the flight attendant to allow the seat swap. The supervisor explained to the FA that seat swaps aren’t uncommon on flights.

The flight was now 45 minutes late. The flight attendant gets the pilots involved and purportedly claims the family is causing “a safety hazard.” One of the pilots decides everyone must deplane. That didn’t sit well with many people — including “airline management and airport security (who) got involved and told the pilot that there was no safety issue and that the plane should fly now.”

Mr. Isola said the pilot (I assume he’s referencing the captain) refused to operate the flight and then left the terminal, his crew following behind.

A new crew was needed to operate the flight, which departed about two and a half hours late.


So what's behind this complete breakdown in customer service? I'm a little surprised at the pilot and the FA refusing to listen to the ground/gate supervisor. I would have thought the Delta/Skywest teams would have put up a united front and resolved the issue in favor of the passenger, especially since it was a simple matter of a consensual seat swap.
 
planecane
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:32 am

NeBaNi wrote:
On a flight from DTW to IAH, the family wasn't seated together, and when a woman in an adjacent seat row swapped seats so a family member could sit next to the autistic passenger, a flight attendant demanded they move back their original seats. Even after the other passengers defended the family, and after a supervisor who boarded the plane instructed the FA to allow the seat swap, the FA got the pilots involved, and one pilot made everybody deplane, refused to fly the plane and left the terminal with his crew. A replacement crew was found and the flight took off 2 hours later.

The article below has the details:
https://renespoints.boardingarea.com/2019/08/19/autistic-passengers-family-claims-delta-skywest-discriminated-against-them/
A couple of excerpts:
In their group was [Ayola's] brother who has autism spectrum disorder. “He is essentially nonverbal,” he explained, “making him unable to express himself oftentimes. He suffers from OCD, sensory overload, and many other symptoms that can make air travel particularly difficult for him. For his safety and the safety of those around him, it is important that he sit with a family member on flights.”

A woman seated in an adjacent row was willing to switch seats so two Isola family members could sit together.

This, for some reason, irked a flight attendant, who allegedly demanded Mr. Isola’s brother move back to his original seat. “We explained to her that he has special needs and that this small accommodation would be necessary,” he said, “however she continued to raise hell about passengers switching seats.” Fellow passengers came to the Isola party’s defense.

Twenty minutes later, a supervisor boarded the plane and instructed the flight attendant to allow the seat swap. The supervisor explained to the FA that seat swaps aren’t uncommon on flights.

The flight was now 45 minutes late. The flight attendant gets the pilots involved and purportedly claims the family is causing “a safety hazard.” One of the pilots decides everyone must deplane. That didn’t sit well with many people — including “airline management and airport security (who) got involved and told the pilot that there was no safety issue and that the plane should fly now.”

Mr. Isola said the pilot (I assume he’s referencing the captain) refused to operate the flight and then left the terminal, his crew following behind.

A new crew was needed to operate the flight, which departed about two and a half hours late.


So what's behind this complete breakdown in customer service? I'm a little surprised at the pilot and the FA refusing to listen to the ground/gate supervisor. I would have thought the Delta/Skywest teams would have put up a united front and resolved the issue in favor of the passenger, especially since it was a simple matter of a consensual seat swap.


I'm just speculating but perhaps the missing part of the story could be that the result of the seat swap ended up with the autistic child sitting in an exit row? I've seen plenty of seat swaps on flights. My wife or I have swapped seats with people for various reasons in the past. I can't think of a time when an FA even noticed or cared. Why would they notice? For all they know, it could be a family or traveling party just swapping seats around. What's the difference?
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:42 am

planecane wrote:
NeBaNi wrote:
On a flight from DTW to IAH, the family wasn't seated together, and when a woman in an adjacent seat row swapped seats so a family member could sit next to the autistic passenger, a flight attendant demanded they move back their original seats. Even after the other passengers defended the family, and after a supervisor who boarded the plane instructed the FA to allow the seat swap, the FA got the pilots involved, and one pilot made everybody deplane, refused to fly the plane and left the terminal with his crew. A replacement crew was found and the flight took off 2 hours later.

The article below has the details:
https://renespoints.boardingarea.com/2019/08/19/autistic-passengers-family-claims-delta-skywest-discriminated-against-them/
A couple of excerpts:
In their group was [Ayola's] brother who has autism spectrum disorder. “He is essentially nonverbal,” he explained, “making him unable to express himself oftentimes. He suffers from OCD, sensory overload, and many other symptoms that can make air travel particularly difficult for him. For his safety and the safety of those around him, it is important that he sit with a family member on flights.”

A woman seated in an adjacent row was willing to switch seats so two Isola family members could sit together.

This, for some reason, irked a flight attendant, who allegedly demanded Mr. Isola’s brother move back to his original seat. “We explained to her that he has special needs and that this small accommodation would be necessary,” he said, “however she continued to raise hell about passengers switching seats.” Fellow passengers came to the Isola party’s defense.

Twenty minutes later, a supervisor boarded the plane and instructed the flight attendant to allow the seat swap. The supervisor explained to the FA that seat swaps aren’t uncommon on flights.

The flight was now 45 minutes late. The flight attendant gets the pilots involved and purportedly claims the family is causing “a safety hazard.” One of the pilots decides everyone must deplane. That didn’t sit well with many people — including “airline management and airport security (who) got involved and told the pilot that there was no safety issue and that the plane should fly now.”

Mr. Isola said the pilot (I assume he’s referencing the captain) refused to operate the flight and then left the terminal, his crew following behind.

A new crew was needed to operate the flight, which departed about two and a half hours late.


So what's behind this complete breakdown in customer service? I'm a little surprised at the pilot and the FA refusing to listen to the ground/gate supervisor. I would have thought the Delta/Skywest teams would have put up a united front and resolved the issue in favor of the passenger, especially since it was a simple matter of a consensual seat swap.


I'm just speculating but perhaps the missing part of the story could be that the result of the seat swap ended up with the autistic child sitting in an exit row? I've seen plenty of seat swaps on flights. My wife or I have swapped seats with people for various reasons in the past. I can't think of a time when an FA even noticed or cared. Why would they notice? For all they know, it could be a family or traveling party just swapping seats around. What's the difference?


Great point, but had this been the case, one of the flight crew or the supervisor would have made it clear that this was the reason. No reason is listed here, other than a single flight attendant refusing her supervisor.

And the crew walking off.

Over people wanting to help out and volunteering to help the young man not be alone.

Waiting to hear the other side of the story.
 
planecane
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:06 am

PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:
planecane wrote:
NeBaNi wrote:
On a flight from DTW to IAH, the family wasn't seated together, and when a woman in an adjacent seat row swapped seats so a family member could sit next to the autistic passenger, a flight attendant demanded they move back their original seats. Even after the other passengers defended the family, and after a supervisor who boarded the plane instructed the FA to allow the seat swap, the FA got the pilots involved, and one pilot made everybody deplane, refused to fly the plane and left the terminal with his crew. A replacement crew was found and the flight took off 2 hours later.

The article below has the details:
https://renespoints.boardingarea.com/2019/08/19/autistic-passengers-family-claims-delta-skywest-discriminated-against-them/
A couple of excerpts:




So what's behind this complete breakdown in customer service? I'm a little surprised at the pilot and the FA refusing to listen to the ground/gate supervisor. I would have thought the Delta/Skywest teams would have put up a united front and resolved the issue in favor of the passenger, especially since it was a simple matter of a consensual seat swap.


I'm just speculating but perhaps the missing part of the story could be that the result of the seat swap ended up with the autistic child sitting in an exit row? I've seen plenty of seat swaps on flights. My wife or I have swapped seats with people for various reasons in the past. I can't think of a time when an FA even noticed or cared. Why would they notice? For all they know, it could be a family or traveling party just swapping seats around. What's the difference?


Great point, but had this been the case, one of the flight crew or the supervisor would have made it clear that this was the reason. No reason is listed here, other than a single flight attendant refusing her supervisor.

And the crew walking off.

Over people wanting to help out and volunteering to help the young man not be alone.

Waiting to hear the other side of the story.


Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.
 
Cactusjuba
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:07 am

Nobody is just walking off the job. They'd probably be fired. You can bet the captain had discussed the matter with either his chief pilot, operations control center, security coordinators, etc. They likely instructed the captain to deplane, and crew scheduling changed their schedule. Delays potentially caused duty time limit violations.

Either way, poorly handled and a negative outcome.
 
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Super80Fan
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:18 am

I'm always amazed with how "stringent" the qualifications/training is to be a flight attendant and then you end up with loose cannons like this one. Makes me question the HR/recruiting departments at these airlines.
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Elementalism
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:19 am

Let me guess, bought economy and expected DL to accommodate them?I suspect there is much more to the story than we are being told right now. If this is how it went down then horrible customer service. But I doubt this is exactly how it went down.
 
spudsmac
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:25 am

One reason why they deplaned might have been for PR and to de-escalate. I used to fly passengers and after the whole Dr. Dao fiasco and the rash of passengers recording any type of disagreement many of us had discussions about how to deal with this. Many of us believed was the best solution is in the event of some type of outburst or escalation at the gate is simply deplane the aircraft and let the issue be resolved in the gate area instead of on the plane. I think this is the best solution for a couple of reasons, 1) it will likely bring the disagreeing parties a notch down because they want to avoid causing more issues (this isn't necessarily fair but it's true), 2) you're not trapped in a narrow metal tube, 2) any video recording made by others will not take place in the plane and will likely get less media attention, 3) it takes some leverage away from the disagreeing party because now it's easier to control them once they get off the plane.

I don't know if this happened in this situation but I can see it might how it could be what occurred. I do know that as captain if it starts to get out of control at the gate, I'm going to deplane, let it be dealt with in the gate area and then board again. Maybe the crew timed out, that might be why they didn't return and operate. I'm not defending anyone but trying to shed some light on the thought process of the crew in a situation like this.
 
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LaunchDetected
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 8:08 am

Those stories are always so strange, but we never hear the FA giving its explanation.
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 10:05 am

LaunchDetected wrote:
Those stories are always so strange, but we never hear the FA giving its explanation.


And you never will. Because they are bound to confidentiality with these things. Imagine how easy it would be for the company to figure out who it is if there were stories popping up from their point of view. Even if it was a third party that posted the information on their behalf, they can still face disciplinary action as crew, like practically any employee, are expected to not discuss negative things that have made it into the media.
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Amiga500
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:15 am

If they were in an exit row, I understand where the FA is coming from. The sensible thing then is to do a seat swap with others - so able bodies are in the exit row. Given the story says numerous passengers defended the family, you'd think that would not have presented a difficulty.

As of yet, I cannot think of any other scenario where the FA's actions are defensible. There are no reports of the passengers behaviour being hazardous or anything as of yet. I also note that the relief crew flew the flight with the re-arranged seating without difficulties.

I know first hand that getting someone that is severely autistic onto a flight is likely challenging enough without having the FA make things so much harder.

****If**** reality is similar to what has been broadcast so far, I'd be relieving the FA and pilot of duties. Permanently. If their judgement is that bad on an issue as clear as this - I don't want them put in a position where the quality of their judgement could be literally the difference between life and death.
 
Blockplus
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:08 pm

If the fa refused to fly, then the only course of action would be to deplane. Since there wouldn’t be an fa on board, you can’t have passengers on board. It is Skywest, and we don’t know there flight schedule. The pilots may have timed out due to the delay. Or may have gone to the flight office to stay not visible till another fa was brought up or recrewed
 
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diverdave
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:25 pm

This is kind of scary quote from a family member: "For his safety and the safety of those around him, it is important that he sit with a family member on flights."

If you start saying stuff like this around crew, they are (quite understandably) going to get nervous.
 
tmoney
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 2:24 pm

diverdave wrote:
This is kind of scary quote from a family member: "For his safety and the safety of those around him, it is important that he sit with a family member on flights."

If you start saying stuff like this around crew, they are (quite understandably) going to get nervous.


Your statement does not support FA's claim in the context given.
You'd rather leave the boy by himself (and thereby be of bigger risk) than let him sit with a family member?
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EBiafore99
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 3:06 pm

We only have one side of the story. As with most other postings like this, the poster was an angel throughout the whole ordeal and the flight crew were the tyrants. It could have happened this way, but my guess is there is more to the story.

For example, how did the seating snafu happened. Did the family plan out seating beforehand and DL screwed up? Or, did the family just throw caution to the wind? It appears this was a DL itinerary all of the way, so they should have been able to get their boarding passes for all segments when they checked in. Didn't they check the boarding passes?

These are important questions to better understand what happened. People complain about FAs on power trips, but from my experience, they also put up with a lot of [beep] from customers thinking they are the only ones that are important.
 
apodino
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 3:22 pm

About the crew walking off. I read on an unofficial source that the crew may have been out of duty time. This is way different than walking off. That being said I have a friend who flies for SkyWest and he says scheduling abuses crews all the time there and can get away with it since there is no union.
 
TheOldDude
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 3:37 pm

The story is nothing more than an allegation supported by unverified assertions that lack completeness. I’m skeptical.
 
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FredrikHAD
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 3:39 pm

And if the reason for the crew leaving was that they timed out, a 30 sec explanation over the gate PA would have taken away a good portion of the poor customer experience. Why is it so difficult to inform customers (not just this incident)?
 
Anthstr
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:23 pm

planecane wrote:
PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:
planecane wrote:

I'm just speculating but perhaps the missing part of the story could be that the result of the seat swap ended up with the autistic child sitting in an exit row? I've seen plenty of seat swaps on flights. My wife or I have swapped seats with people for various reasons in the past. I can't think of a time when an FA even noticed or cared. Why would they notice? For all they know, it could be a family or traveling party just swapping seats around. What's the difference?


Great point, but had this been the case, one of the flight crew or the supervisor would have made it clear that this was the reason. No reason is listed here, other than a single flight attendant refusing her supervisor.

And the crew walking off.

Over people wanting to help out and volunteering to help the young man not be alone.

Waiting to hear the other side of the story.


Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.


It could have been a Customer Service supervisor. CS controls the boarding process, and seat issues (including after passengers are already onboard, but while the door is still open) is usually their bailiwick at most airlines.

What I don't understand is if Customer Service was okay with this, why wouldn't they have just done a seat swap in their system and given new boarding passes to the passengers that swapped?
 
Junction
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:45 pm

FredrikHAD wrote:
30 sec explanation over the gate PA would have taken away a good portion of the poor customer experience. Why is it so difficult to inform customers (not just this incident)?

You're living in a dream world. Most people pay no attention to the PA announcements at the gate or onboard the aircraft.
 
Sokes
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:11 am

Flight attendants may want to read this:
https://www.autism.org.uk/about/behavio ... downs.aspx

So how many million $ compensation will the airline have to pay?
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ssteve
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:17 pm

Junction wrote:
FredrikHAD wrote:
30 sec explanation over the gate PA would have taken away a good portion of the poor customer experience. Why is it so difficult to inform customers (not just this incident)?

You're living in a dream world. Most people pay no attention to the PA announcements at the gate or onboard the aircraft.


Right, if there are 100 people stewing at the gate or on the plane wondering when their delayed flight is going to start moving... no one listens. Right.
 
KingOrGod
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:26 pm

If the option to pay for seat assignment exists, and the parents chose not to, then this one-sided shitstorm is on them, and them alone (I would never travel with my child and unassigned seats). They should not choose to rely on the goodwill of everybody to bend over for them - and then bitch to the world when it goes pear shaped. We don't know the weight and balance, exit row limitations etc etc etc, and given only one side of the story, I am also skeptical.
 
AWACSooner
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:31 pm

Junction wrote:
FredrikHAD wrote:
30 sec explanation over the gate PA would have taken away a good portion of the poor customer experience. Why is it so difficult to inform customers (not just this incident)?

You're living in a dream world. Most people pay no attention to the PA announcements at the gate or onboard the aircraft.

Tell me about it. This past weekend, while sitting at LAS waiting on my Mx delayed G4 flight to OKC, I listened while the gate agents next door called TEN TIMES for all pax to board their flight to BLI. Door closes, flight leaves...then come five pax asking about when the flight to BLI will board, then claiming they were sitting there the entire time and never heard a single announcement. Cue the popcorn drama and meltdowns...and G4 charged them for a whole new ticket to fly on a later flight to BLI...and deservedly so.
 
AZORMP
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:43 pm

planecane wrote:
PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:
planecane wrote:

I'm just speculating but perhaps the missing part of the story could be that the result of the seat swap ended up with the autistic child sitting in an exit row? I've seen plenty of seat swaps on flights. My wife or I have swapped seats with people for various reasons in the past. I can't think of a time when an FA even noticed or cared. Why would they notice? For all they know, it could be a family or traveling party just swapping seats around. What's the difference?


Great point, but had this been the case, one of the flight crew or the supervisor would have made it clear that this was the reason. No reason is listed here, other than a single flight attendant refusing her supervisor.

And the crew walking off.

Over people wanting to help out and volunteering to help the young man not be alone.

Waiting to hear the other side of the story.



Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.


I think it might've been either a DGS supervisor (DGS handles most of the DCI traffic in DTW) or potentially mainline.
 
Junction
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:00 pm

ssteve wrote:

Right, if there are 100 people stewing at the gate or on the plane wondering when their delayed flight is going to start moving... no one listens. Right.


Well, that must have been what happened in this case. There is no way the airport staff and flight crew would have just turned out the lights and gone home without communicating what was going on to the people who were on that flight. I don't buy that for one second.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:04 pm

KingOrGod wrote:
If the option to pay for seat assignment exists, and the parents chose not to, then this one-sided shitstorm is on them...


No, it isn't, actually. Read the CFRs that implement the Air Carrier Access Act. Passengers needing a safety assistant (which, IMHO, fairly well describes the child) are entitled to be seated next to the safety assistant. Carriers can't demand a seat reservation fee. They can't demand that seats be pre-assigned.

The pilots should have recognized immediately that they and the FA were out of their depth and gotten a Delta Complaint Resolution Official on it.
 
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:23 pm

FredrikHAD wrote:
And if the reason for the crew leaving was that they timed out, a 30 sec explanation over the gate PA would have taken away a good portion of the poor customer experience. Why is it so difficult to inform customers (not just this incident)?

Because the few people actually listening to the PA announcement then attack the messenger like they were the one who made the decision. I had to buy antacids in bulk. "yes, ma'am, it is our fault it's snowing so hard, the pilots can't see the ground from the cockpit. Let me see when the next available flight is."
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Cubsrule
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:37 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
KingOrGod wrote:
If the option to pay for seat assignment exists, and the parents chose not to, then this one-sided shitstorm is on them...


No, it isn't, actually. Read the CFRs that implement the Air Carrier Access Act. Passengers needing a safety assistant (which, IMHO, fairly well describes the child) are entitled to be seated next to the safety assistant. Carriers can't demand a seat reservation fee. They can't demand that seats be pre-assigned.

The pilots should have recognized immediately that they and the FA were out of their depth and gotten a Delta Complaint Resolution Official on it.


. . . assuming that the parents informed Delta of the need for a safety assistant at booking. Is there evidence of that? DL can't fix problems about which it has no knowledge.
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:38 pm

AZORMP wrote:
planecane wrote:
PSAatSAN4Ever wrote:

Great point, but had this been the case, one of the flight crew or the supervisor would have made it clear that this was the reason. No reason is listed here, other than a single flight attendant refusing her supervisor.

And the crew walking off.

Over people wanting to help out and volunteering to help the young man not be alone.

Waiting to hear the other side of the story.



Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.


I think it might've been either a DGS supervisor (DGS handles most of the DCI traffic in DTW) or potentially mainline.


DGS handles B/C terminals. The pictures make it very clear this was over in A, which is where probably 50% of the 76 seat flying is these days. Terminal A would have been Delta mainline
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Polot
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:40 pm

Cubsrule wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
KingOrGod wrote:
If the option to pay for seat assignment exists, and the parents chose not to, then this one-sided shitstorm is on them...


No, it isn't, actually. Read the CFRs that implement the Air Carrier Access Act. Passengers needing a safety assistant (which, IMHO, fairly well describes the child) are entitled to be seated next to the safety assistant. Carriers can't demand a seat reservation fee. They can't demand that seats be pre-assigned.

The pilots should have recognized immediately that they and the FA were out of their depth and gotten a Delta Complaint Resolution Official on it.


. . . assuming that the parents informed Delta of the need for a safety assistant at booking. Is there evidence of that? DL can't fix problems about which it has no knowledge.

True, but it doesn’t really explain why the FA apparently had a stick up his/her butt about passengers (willingly) exchanging seats. It happens all the time, and I have frequently seen FAs assist in the process. All they typical ask is that you wait until after everyone is on the plane so boarding doesn’t get confusing. If it was a weight/balance issue you can still work out a seating arrangement where everyone is happy.
 
Cubsrule
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:47 pm

Polot wrote:
Cubsrule wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:

No, it isn't, actually. Read the CFRs that implement the Air Carrier Access Act. Passengers needing a safety assistant (which, IMHO, fairly well describes the child) are entitled to be seated next to the safety assistant. Carriers can't demand a seat reservation fee. They can't demand that seats be pre-assigned.

The pilots should have recognized immediately that they and the FA were out of their depth and gotten a Delta Complaint Resolution Official on it.


. . . assuming that the parents informed Delta of the need for a safety assistant at booking. Is there evidence of that? DL can't fix problems about which it has no knowledge.

True, but it doesn’t really explain why the FA apparently had a stick up his/her butt about passengers (willingly) exchanging seats. It happens all the time, and I have frequently seen FAs assist in the process. All they typical ask is that you wait until after everyone is on the plane so boarding doesn’t get confusing. If it was a weight/balance issue you can still work out a seating arrangement where everyone is happy.


I agree with that, and didn't mean to suggest that what happened onboard was okay. I'm just not sure based on what we know now that DL could or should have done anythign differently prior to boarding.
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
yeginleduc
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 3:16 pm

Since i haven't seen a video on youtube about this yet go viral with bad airline crew behavior I am waiting for Delta and/or Skywest to release a statement. You would think these days that there would be at least 60 other cellphones on board that plane if the passenger or the crew were mis-behaving.

If this ends up being a FA and crew that didn't want to let consenting passengers swap seats then they should get whats coming to them. Even if passengers do pay for pre-assigned seats, if they are willing to change for families/disabilities, then why would you not let it just happen.
 
AZORMP
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 3:20 pm

DiamondFlyer wrote:
AZORMP wrote:
planecane wrote:


Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.


I think it might've been either a DGS supervisor (DGS handles most of the DCI traffic in DTW) or potentially mainline.


DGS handles B/C terminals. The pictures make it very clear this was over in A, which is where probably 50% of the 76 seat flying is these days. Terminal A would have been Delta mainline


Okay. I haven't seen the photos indicating one way or another. Thanks for the info.
 
AZORMP
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 3:20 pm

DiamondFlyer wrote:
AZORMP wrote:
planecane wrote:


Which indicates that there is more to this story. What kind of supervisor would it be anyway? The purser? Doesn't the captain have ultimate authority? The story makes no sense which is why I think that there are some critical facts missing.


I think it might've been either a DGS supervisor (DGS handles most of the DCI traffic in DTW) or potentially mainline.


DGS handles B/C terminals. The pictures make it very clear this was over in A, which is where probably 50% of the 76 seat flying is these days. Terminal A would have been Delta mainline


Okay. I haven't seen the photos indicating one way or another. Thanks for the info.
 
lavalampluva
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 5:58 pm

What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.
Remind me to send a thank you note to Mr. Boeing.
 
Elementalism
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:06 pm

lavalampluva wrote:
What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.


Im bugged when families dont purchase the correct seat to be near each other and then expect people to give up their seats because of their failure to plan properly.
 
planecane
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:11 pm

lavalampluva wrote:
What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.


It depends a bit on the length of the flight and what type of seat I'd be moving to. If I'm traveling alone and have a window seat I'd have no problem swapping to another window seat or an aisle seat. If the flight is short, moving to a middle would be no big deal.

If I'm flying over 3 hours, then I'm not going to give up a window to sit in a middle seat.

If I'm traveling with my wife, we'd be willing to separate for a relatively short flight but probably not if it is a 2 hr+ flight. You may say that it won't kill you to be separated from your wife for a couple of hours. By the same token, it won't kill a family if the mother or father is separated from the rest of them.

Now, I'd be more accommodating if it is a relatively young child (or children) traveling with only one parent but "family" implies a larger group.
 
ozark1
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:16 pm

I sure wish these kind of blogs would disappear. Seems like so many love to feed on the outcome when you may never know what really happened. Even someone at the scene may have interpreted it differently. But let me say in the angry society in which we now live, it's always guilty on the airlines part until proven innocent. We are not here to play psychologist and figure out who did what and who said what. We are here, or so i thought, to talk about commercial airplanes. (Topics like routes, fleet changes, plane groundings, in flight product, etc.) . These kind of horsehockey topics belong on FOX, CNN or the National Enquirer
 
WayexTDI
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Wed Aug 21, 2019 7:01 pm

lavalampluva wrote:
What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.

What bugs me is that families "demand" others to modify their own plans to correct the families' poor planning.

I don't mind flying Basic Economy when I fly alone (personal or business); but I refuse to fly Basic Economy when traveling with my family, as I want to chose our seats so we are together. And, if tickets are purchased separately, then I call the airline so they can link the common leg(s) to avoid (as much as possible) one party from being reseated without the other one.
I make my choices when booking tickets and I live by those.
 
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NeBaNi
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:21 am

Amiga500 wrote:
If they were in an exit row, I understand where the FA is coming from. The sensible thing then is to do a seat swap with others - so able bodies are in the exit row. Given the story says numerous passengers defended the family, you'd think that would not have presented a difficulty.

As of yet, I cannot think of any other scenario where the FA's actions are defensible. There are no reports of the passengers behaviour being hazardous or anything as of yet. I also note that the relief crew flew the flight with the re-arranged seating without difficulties.

I know first hand that getting someone that is severely autistic onto a flight is likely challenging enough without having the FA make things so much harder.

****If**** reality is similar to what has been broadcast so far, I'd be relieving the FA and pilot of duties. Permanently. If their judgement is that bad on an issue as clear as this - I don't want them put in a position where the quality of their judgement could be literally the difference between life and death.

In another article that quotes the autistic passenger's brother, he says they were not in an exit row:
“It’s never, in all of our flights, been an issue before,” Isola said. “It was not an exit lane and he was sitting very quietly."

From: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/20/delta-skywest-airline-passenger-autism
 
grbauc
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 4:37 am

Modern society loves these treads moral outrage Internet sleuthing, guessing judging detective work gang with partial information that makes it look like the whole airline just discriminates against certain kinds of passengers. When we all know these are isolated incidents in many cases. Many times I believe their started with an agenda.
These treads usually get a lot of clicks and action from the outrage and justice detective club. Facebook, Twitter knows that anger and controversy gets clicks. it’s unfortunate that it’s Spills over to other sites.
 
lavalampluva
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 4:47 am

WayexTDI wrote:
lavalampluva wrote:
What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.

What bugs me is that families "demand" others to modify their own plans to correct the families' poor planning.


Not every family can book flights months ahead of time. Sometimes travel plans are very last minute. Sometimes they book what they can and hope for the best.
Remind me to send a thank you note to Mr. Boeing.
 
Amiga500
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:11 am

NeBaNi wrote:
In another article that quotes the autistic passenger's brother, he says they were not in an exit row:
“It’s never, in all of our flights, been an issue before,” Isola said. “It was not an exit lane and he was sitting very quietly."

From: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/20/delta-skywest-airline-passenger-autism


Then I find it extremely hard to justify the FA's actions.

The Captain was put in a difficult position - but with the supervisor there supposedly saying "fly the plane" then it should have been fairly straightforward there too.
 
KingOrGod
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:29 am

grbauc wrote:
Many times I believe their started with an agenda.


That's too true.
 
KingOrGod
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:34 am

NeBaNi wrote:
Amiga500 wrote:
If they were in an exit row, I understand where the FA is coming from. The sensible thing then is to do a seat swap with others - so able bodies are in the exit row. Given the story says numerous passengers defended the family, you'd think that would not have presented a difficulty.

As of yet, I cannot think of any other scenario where the FA's actions are defensible. There are no reports of the passengers behaviour being hazardous or anything as of yet. I also note that the relief crew flew the flight with the re-arranged seating without difficulties.

I know first hand that getting someone that is severely autistic onto a flight is likely challenging enough without having the FA make things so much harder.

****If**** reality is similar to what has been broadcast so far, I'd be relieving the FA and pilot of duties. Permanently. If their judgement is that bad on an issue as clear as this - I don't want them put in a position where the quality of their judgement could be literally the difference between life and death.

In another article that quotes the autistic passenger's brother, he says they were not in an exit row:
“It’s never, in all of our flights, been an issue before,” Isola said. “It was not an exit lane and he was sitting very quietly."

From: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/aug/20/delta-skywest-airline-passenger-autism


See bolded text. How stupid a statement to write. I hope your're fired for every misjudgement you make in your job. Instead of educating these people about autism, let's just fire them. Way to go. :crazy:
 
rugeley123
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:00 am

Although we don’t know the full facts of the situation, I struggle to justify the FA’s actions or response here.

If the passenger is autistic, especially non-verbal, then everything possible should be done to accommodate the passenger’s needs, simple as. It would be clear that another family member needs to be with the individuals. It would be nice if the family informed the airline beforehand, and as a family with an autistic individual, I would have expected that as planning is usually the key to making trips like this with an autistic person. If not, I would have expected the airline / staff members to be informed at the airport before departure. This could have also been the family’s first trip on an aircraft, and wouldn’t necessarily know to inform the airline. As much as planning is important to those with autism, it’s not always possible. It seems that people don’t tend to have much experience with working with autistic people, and sometimes don’t know the length or struggles that many people working with autism, or those with autism, deal with on a daily basis.

Whatever happened, I can’t understand why the FA’s would not try and help the passengers or make a suitable compromise. Sorry, but if they don’t know how to work with passengers with such needs (which I imagine was done to some degree during training), then they are clearly not in a position to continue the role. This should have probably been dealt with in a similar way as a minor being separated from other family members.
 
WayexTDI
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 11:16 am

lavalampluva wrote:
WayexTDI wrote:
lavalampluva wrote:
What bugs me is the number of times i’ve seen a single passenger refused to move so a family can sit together.

What bugs me is that families "demand" others to modify their own plans to correct the families' poor planning.


Not every family can book flights months ahead of time. Sometimes travel plans are very last minute. Sometimes they book what they can and hope for the best.

Then, stop acting as if you're entitled to sitting together.
Flying is a privilege, not a right.
 
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stl07
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:00 pm

Elementalism wrote:
Let me guess, bought economy and expected DL to accommodate them?I suspect there is much more to the story than we are being told right now. If this is how it went down then horrible customer service. But I doubt this is exactly how it went down.

Since when did buying economy become such a crime to a.netters that you can’t even sit by your disabled child
Interesting how every thread is spammed with "bring back paid membership, there are too many spammers"
 
planecane
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Re: Autistic Passenger’s Family Claims Delta, SkyWest Discriminated Against Them

Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:09 pm

stl07 wrote:
Elementalism wrote:
Let me guess, bought economy and expected DL to accommodate them?I suspect there is much more to the story than we are being told right now. If this is how it went down then horrible customer service. But I doubt this is exactly how it went down.

Since when did buying economy become such a crime to a.netters that you can’t even sit by your disabled child

I think elementalism meant basic economy (or whatever Delta calls it) where you don't get advanced seat assignments.

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