Thursday, November 23, 2006

BA Forgets We Have a Choice

British Airways (BA) is going through another authoritarian phase and should be avoided if you're a male Christian.

Until 1987 BA was a typical customer-hostile state enterprise - our kids called its ratty flight attendants "Grims". Then
Mrs T privatized it and it flowered as new managers put the customer first. By the early 90s it was the world's most profitable airline and my lifeline between San Francisco and London - vastly better than United and American.

But the new managers died or retired and BA has been losing passengers
since 2002 as it reverted to its old ways - here are two examples.
In October 2006...a Christian employee of British Airways, was asked to cover up a necklace which depicted a Christian Cross and was placed on unpaid leave when she refused to do so... Christian groups accused British Airways of double standards, as Sikh and Muslim employees are not prevented from wearing religious garments at work.
This is a wonderfully ignorant policy - the flag BA flies is made up of the Christian crosses of St George, St Andrew and St Patrick. And BA's competitors capitalize on their national dress - Emirates flight attendants wear cute headscarves and JAL's wear natty Kimonos. Now even Brit Members of Parliament are protesting.

To BA, not just its national religion is toxic -
male passengers are too!
...British Airways has a policy of not seating adult male passengers next to unaccompanied children, even if the child's parents are elsewhere on the plane....The policy came to light following an incident in which ... a retired journalist, was asked to move from his seat next to a 9-year-old girl...
The poor guy (he's 76) commented (my ellipsis):
"The discussion (with the flight attendant) went on for several minutes but she refused to back down and said we could not take off until the problem was sorted out. I heard her muttering to a colleague that everyone would have to disembark.

"She didn't seem embarrassed - just rather irritated that it was taking up so much time.

So BA is back to being Grim - thus do incompetent managers destroy shareholder value.

Male Christians (and everyone else) can find better airlines than BA here.