United Airlines, the carrier known for its “friendly skies,” finds itself under unfriendly fire after a gate attendant barred two teenage girls from boarding a flight from Denver to Minneapolis Sunday because they wore leggings.
Clip via CBS News
The girls were stopped because they were traveling under an employee travel pass, which has a dress code attached to it that bars such passengers from wearing revealing spandex or Lycra pants including leggings.
United Air spokesman Jonathan Guerin said the girls didn’t make a fuss about the issue, and willingly changed their clothes and took a later flight.
Gun regulation advocate Shannon Watts wasn’t so understanding, however. She took time out from infringing upon Americans’ Second Amendment rights to take on the girl’s cause. She tweeted:
— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) March 26, 2017
This was followed up by nearly a dozen other tweets, and soon the hashtag #LeggingsGate was trending. CNN contributor Jeff Yang saw hypocrisy in United’s decision, given a recent tweet the airline sent to its followers.
— Jeff Yang (@originalspin) March 26, 2017
But others saw hypocrisy on the part of the complainers.
— Deplorable?Rāzərbak (@MediaJuggernaut) March 26, 2017
United employees and family members of employees are subject to a dress code, whereas regularly ticketed passengers are not, and they can be seen boarding flights in any manner of attire, including pajamas.
Later that evening Guerin delivered a statement on United’s policy regarding “pass riders”, according to Fox 31 Denver.
We care about the way we present ourselves to you, our customers, as we believe that is part of the experience on board our flights. One of the benefits of working for an airline is that our employees are able to travel the world. Even better, they can extend this privilege to a select number of what we call “pass riders.” These are relatives or friends who also receive the benefit of free or heavily discounted air travel – on our airline as well as on airlines around the world where we have mutual agreements in place for employees and pass riders.
When taking advantage of this benefit, all employees and pass riders are considered representatives of United. And like most companies, we have a dress code that we ask employees and pass riders to follow. The passengers this morning were United pass riders and not in compliance with our dress code for company benefit travel. We regularly remind our employees that when they place a family member or friend on a flight for free as a standby passenger, they need to follow our dress code.
To our regular customers, your leggings are welcome.
Back in the early days of commercial air travel, men routinely wore suits and women wore dresses. Both sexes boarded flights with hats, and didn’t remove them until they were seated.
Folks on social media ridiculed the air carrier.
— Cate (@CateCosburn) March 26, 2017
— geoduck (@geoduck_cf4l) March 26, 2017
— Jared Mason (@JaredEMason) March 27, 2017
— Style for Dorks (@StyleforDorks) March 26, 2017
— Jared Mason (@JaredEMason) March 26, 2017
— Stacey Zapp (@szapp74) March 26, 2017
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