[nfbwatlk] NFB Cane-Related Airlines Incident

Lilly awaterlilly at comcast.net
Tue Mar 24 06:31:05 UTC 2015


Trust me, airlines can be pretty bad to physically disabled too. It infuriates me when they talk about me in third person when I'm sitting right there!  There is so much need for education on disAbility etiquette.

On March 23, 2015, at 11:20 PM, Mary ellen via nfbwatlk <nfbwatlk at nfbnet.org> wrote:

Removing the cane was a violation of 14 CFR Part 121.589(G), provided Sushel
stored the cane according to that section of the regulations.  I agree that
the rest of the story sounds odd, but I'm very much inclined to believe the
behavior of the airline staff has a lot to do with the level of fear of the
airlines and recent incidents of peculiar behavior on the part of airline
passengers.  I'm clearly not suggesting Sushel's behavior was in any way
questionable, just that flight staff are reacting based on what happened on
a flight they heard about last week rather than the actual circumstances of
this flight.  That doesn't excuse them for a complete lack of judgment if
the situation is indeed as described.  Unless I get clear data to the
contrary, my experiences with airlines incline me to believe the blind
person until provided with irrevocable proof that the airline staff is
correct.  I freely admit to a deep prejudice against airlines.  I think they
treat passengers terribly and blind passengers worse than everybody else.
Yes, I know there are exceptions.  I've had delightful experiences with
airline crews.  Nevertheless, if it weren't for the time involved, I'd
rather take the bus!



-----Original Message-----
From: nfbwatlk [mailto:nfbwatlk-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Arielle
Silverman via nfbwatlk
Sent: Monday, March 23, 2015 10:29 PM
To: Jessiaca Evans; NFB of Washington Talk Mailing List
Subject: Re: [nfbwatlk] NFB Cane-Related Airlines Incident

Hi Sushil and all,
Something about this story sounds odd to me. I know that flight attendants
often misunderstand the regulations regarding straight canes and mistakenly
make us turn them over. What I don't understand is why, if you complied and
gave up the cane, they would then remove you from the flight. Just asking
their names is not reason enough to remove you. After all, my husband tells
me that all flight crew members wear name tags. Rebooking you is costly for
the airline and hurts them by making a customer more unhappy. I can only
imagine that they did it because there was something else about your
interaction with Byron that made them feel threatened or like you were a
security risk to other passengers. The fact that Byron walked with you to
the gate and said he wanted to resolve things further makes me suspect there
might be something else going on. I'm not saying the airline was actually in
the right here; I'm just saying I don't think we have enough information
about this case to claim for sure that it was a case of blindness-related
discrimination. I'd like to hear what Alaska Airlines has to say in their
defense. While I think you probably do have a legitimate complaint, their
behavior just doesn't seem logical or consistent with typical airline
behavior, so I feel like I could judge the case appropriately only if I hear
both sides.
Respectfully,
Arielle

On 3/23/15, Jessiaca Evans via nfbwatlk <nfbwatlk at nfbnet.org> wrote:
> What an awful incident. You would think airlines would be more 
> educated in this day and age. I am sorry for your experience, and I 
> hope that something good comes from this.
> Regards
>
> Sent from my iPhone
>
>> On Mar 23, 2015, at 11:11 PM, Mary ellen via nfbwatlk 
>> <nfbwatlk at nfbnet.org> wrote:
>>
>> Sushil,
>>
>> What a horrid incident!  I had a similar problem with Alaska Airlines 
>> from Seattle to Dallas in November.  When I phoned to complain, I was 
>> told that the flight crew would be educated about the correct 
>> regulation.  Clearly my request that all flight personnel be notified 
>> about 14 CFR Part
>> 121.589(g)
>> went unheeded.
>>
>> I hope you file a discrimination complaint with the Department of 
>> Transportation, not just with Alaska Airlines.  By the way, since 
>> when has it been considered sinister to ask for the name of service 
>> personnel?
>> George Orwell is alive and well and works for Alaska Airlines!
>>
>> Mary Ellen
>>
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: nfbwatlk [mailto:nfbwatlk-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of 
>> Oswal via nfbwatlk
>> Sent: Monday, March 23, 2015 8:32 PM
>> To: 'Marci Carpenter via nfbwatlk'
>> Subject: [nfbwatlk] NFB Cane-Related Airlines Incident
>>
>> Hi Marci,  just wanted you to know that I was asked to leave  the 
>> Alaska Airlines flight 667 from Dallas to  Seattle this evening 
>> because of the NFB cane
>>
>> I had stored  away the  cane  by the window  seat but before the 
>> plane would take off, one of the crew member, Byron, asked  me to 
>> hand over the cane for safety reasons.
>>
>> I gave him  the cane but asked for his name. He gave me his name but 
>> it bothered him and he brought a second staff member to speak to me. 
>> I told him that I have already given the cane.  He told me that I  
>> had asked for their names; therefore,  they are going to take me off 
>> the plane. I assume that they were  looking for an apology from me 
>> for having asked  their names.
>>
>> After I got off the plane with my  two younger boys,  Byron followed 
>> me to the gate and  told me that he would like to resolve  the issue. 
>> I told him that  I want to get home this evening but now I can't 
>> because  he has taken me off the last flight of the day to Seattle.
>>
>> He told me that he could book me on the American Airlines flight  
>> next morning. I told him that I can take care of  it myself.
>>
>> I  did later get  seats on the morning American Airlines flight for 
>> tomorrow, and we are  staying at Wyndham overnight.
>>
>> Talk to you more when I get in  tomorrow,
>>
>> Sushil
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
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