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Many U.S. airlines are over-staffed due to reduced flight times and low demand for air travel amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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United Airlines has been charged in a new lawsuit for providing staff on charter flights to athletic teams with flight attendants who are “young, white, female and predominantly blond / blue-eyed”.

According to the lawsuit obtained by USA TODAY, filed Friday by Kim Guillory, a black woman, and Sharon Tesler, a Jewish woman, both “over the age of 39”, Major League Baseball, National Collegiate Athletic Association and National Football League teams between which the San Francisco 49ers, Los Angeles Rams, Kansas City Chiefs and New Orleans Saints have flown on team charter flights in recent years with “dedicated crews” who were unfairly equipped with crew members who “fit into a visual image specific . ”

“United Airlines is proud of our expertise in diversity, equity and inclusion,” the airline told USA TODAY in a statement provided by spokesman Jonathan Guerin on Sunday. “While we cannot comment on this ongoing litigation, the flight attendants included in our Sports Team Charter program are broadly representative of our overall population of flight attendants with regards to age and race. It is important to emphasize that the suitability of the Flight attendants working on a charter flight relies solely on performance and presence and has nothing to do with age, race or gender. “

(Photo: United Airlines)

The lawsuit argues that teams have the ability to fly with a “leisure crew”, which opens the door to any flight crew member and results in a higher level of “age, race and gender diversity” or “dedicated crew”, which United says it “encourages the majority of its customers to choose to hire”. These “dedicated teams”, the cause claims, are made up of young, white and “predominantly blonde / blue-eyed women.”

“The selection and assignment of in-flight charter coordinators, ‘dedicated crews’ and the ‘dedicated list’ for the charter program were, and continue to be, illegally based on race and ancestry, age and gender,” he says. the cause .

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Tesler, a United employee for 36 years, said she had experienced “multiple incidents of United employees discriminating against Jewish individuals”, with both abusive comments about Jews and Israelis and her dark hair, which she claims was called “Jewish. “. “She says she was told to cut her hair to” align with United’s visual image of a stereotypical white flight attendant. “

Guillory, a flight attendant who has worked for United for two years and was awarded seniority based on her 26-year employment at Continental Airlines, said she was “subjected to continuing discrimination, harassment and retaliation which is increased in severity and frequency “and had repeatedly raised his concerns about the lack of diversity among crew members on NFL charter flights.

Despite United’s policy against accepting gifts over $ 25, dedicated crew members “also receive tickets and the ability to participate in games and playoffs, including the Superbowl, extremely valuable passes that guarantee access to the field. (which aren’t even available to the general public), merchandise, and more, “according to the cause.

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Previously: A black couple from New Jersey claim they were racially profiled at a Boston hotel

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