A Muslim family filed a formal complaint against United Airlines after being booted from a flight for security reasons.
Shortly after boarding a flight from Chicago to Washington, D.C., Eaman-Amy Saad Shebley, her husband and their three children were asked to exit the plane when she asked about a five-point harness, a seatbelt for kids.
“We’re going to ask that you step off the aircraft with all your belongings,” a flight attendant told the family in a video that captured the incident.
After Shebley’s husband asked why, the attendant said, “because they are investigating.”
“Is it a discriminatory decision?” Shebley asked the pilot, who came out to join the flight attendant in asking the family to leave.
“It is a safety of flight issue,” the pilot could be heard saying.
But the family claimed they were targeted for “how they look.”
“Shame on you United Airlines for profiling my family and me for no reason other than how we look and kicking us off the plane for ‘safety flight issues’ on our flight to DC for the kids spring break,” Shebley posted on Facebook. “My three kids are too young to have experienced this.”
The family was placed on another flight to reach their destination shortly after what they believe was an incident of discrimination. But United Airlines insisted it was not.
“We rebooked them on a later flight because of concerns about their child’s safety seat, which did not comply with federal safety regulations,” the airline said in a statement.
“Both United and SkyWest hold our employees to the highest standards of professionalism and have zero tolerance for discrimination,” the statement included.
This recent incident is a reminder of the discrimination Tahera Ahmad faced on the same United Airlines flight path in 2015.
While seated on a United Airlines plane to Washington when she asked a flight attendant for a can of soda, she was given an open one and told she couldn’t have a closed can because she would use it as a weapon.
Many are using the hashtag #RememberTaheraAhmad and #TaheraAhmad as they take to social to post their outrage over what happened to the Shebley family.
Check out the video Shebley took of her family’s removal from the flight below and let us know what you think in the comments.
(Photo: Eaman-Amy Saad Shebley via Facebook)