Saturday, October 14, 2006

British Airways ... Repent!

I was tempted to head this post "Boycott BA!", but that would have been unfair.

Instead, perhaps justice might be better served by expressing profound disapproval of what the company has done and calling on BA to publicly announce a reversal of its policies.

I refer here to a story in the Daily Mail entitled Christian BA employee suspended for wearing cross necklace. Read it all here

The story reads, in part:

"The airline's uniform code states that staff must not wear visible jewellery or other 'adornments' while on duty without permission from management.

"It makes exceptions for Muslim and Sikh minorities by allowing them to wear hijabs and turbans.

"Under rules drawn up by BA's 'diversity team' and 'uniform committee', Sikh employees can even wear the traditional iron bangle - even though this would usually be classed as jewellery - while Muslim workers are also allowed prayer breaks during work time.

"But Miss Eweida, 55, from Twickenham, insisted her cross, which is smaller than a ten pence piece, was not jewellery but an expression of her deep Christian faith.

"She questioned why she was being forced to hide her religion when BA's Muslim and Sikh workers could express theirs.

"Miss Eweida said last night: "I will not hide my belief in the Lord Jesus. British Airways permits Muslims to wear a headscarf, Sikhs to wear a turban and other faiths religious apparel.

"Only Christians are forbidden to express their faith. I am a loyal and conscientious employee of British Airways, but I stand up for the rights of all citizens..."

"Miss Eweida is suing BA under the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003.

"Her case is being supported by her union, the TGWU, and she has hired Paul Diamond, a barrister specialising in religious affairs and an adviser for the Keep Sunday Special campaign, to represent her at her employment tribunal.

"And a petition of support has been signed by more than 200 fellow workers."


Warwickensis said...

And Britons wonder why they are losing a sense of British identity!

Well, what profiteth it a man...?

poetreader said...

It isn't likely to happen anytime soon, but were I to be flying somewhere that British Airways serves, and found that there was another airline serving the same place that had a more reasonable attitude, I would cheerfully pay a higher fare. Now, if they were consistent in banning ALL religious attire, and enforcing absolutely uniform dress, I'd have no objection, and would say to a Christian, to a Muslim, to a Sikh, or to a Jew who could not work under those conditions: "OK. Don't" I'd consider that to be an unnecessary rule, but a fair one. This discriminatory rule is not acceptable.