DELTA AIRLINES WRITES TO THE ASSOCIATION OF BRITISH MUSLIMS


RE: THE TREATMENT OF AMERICAN MUSLIMS ON DELTA/ATLANTIC SOUTHEAST AIRLINES FLIGHT

FROM: Kathy Johnston
CC: Richard Anderson

17 May 2011 19:19
Dear Mr. Abbasi,

Thank you for writing to Richard Anderson to share your concerns.

There’s been a great deal of media activity around two customers who were denied boarding on flight #5452 (MEM-CLT) this past Friday.

As you probably already know, Atlantic Southeast Airlines (ASA) who was operating the regional jet for us, offered its apologies to the customers and is following up with the crew to understand circumstances surrounding this event. Atlantic Southeast worked over the weekend to answer questions about the situation, and we want to be sure you hear our perspective on this issue, and help clarify any questions you may have.

As the individuals responsible for the safety and security of their flight and everyone on board, pilots industry-wide do have authority over their aircraft within the parameters set by their individual carrier.  Although, following a situation like this it is standard to review the matter with the pilots and talk with them about their decision so we can have our own understanding.

On Friday, once all the follow-up screenings had been completed, Delta ground crew immediately offered our apologies and worked to get these passengers booked on our next available flight and did everything possible to help make the passengers comfortable while they waited.

We want you to know that as a global carrier we transport people from every country of the world, every religion, every ethnicity and every race, and we take very seriously the trust our customers place in us. Our employees represent countries all over the world, and wouldn’t have it any other way.

But most importantly, although we were not the operators of the flight, these passengers are our customers and we would like to join Atlantic Southeast once again in offering an apology for any impact the situation had on both them and their travel.

Sincerely,

Kathy Johnston

Coordinator

Customer Care

Delta Air Lines/KLM Royal Dutch Airlines

From: Mohammed Abbasi [mailto:mohammed.abbasi@aobm.org]

Sent: Sunday, May 08, 2011 4:04 PM

To: Anderson, Richard

Cc: Paul Salahuddin Armstrong; Adeel Rahman; David Rosser-Owen; Julie Siddiqi

Subject: Association of British Muslims /The CEO of Delta Airlines

Dear Mr Anderson

The removal of the Imams by your airline and the consequent uproar in the American Muslim community is now going worldwide via the media and the internet – but what were the exact circumstances of the reason your pilot removed the two gentleman off the aircraft?

What I can say is that as the CEO of Delta you need to put your side of the story via the media and yes via the Muslim community – if not in the United States do so via the British Muslims – but silence on your part over what looks like an Islamophobic incident by a single employee of yours makes the airline itself look as supporting such incidents against Muslims generally!

We as a human family need to be working together to rid ourselves of fears of one another.

I have copied my colleagues from The Association of British Muslims into this email and look forward to helping Delta Airlines put their side of the story if asked.

Warm regards

Mohammed Abbasi

Co-Director

Association of British Muslims

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