Home / Business / "It's by far the most humiliating experience": a Houston doctor forced to hide on a flight from American Airlines wants policy changes

"It's by far the most humiliating experience": a Houston doctor forced to hide on a flight from American Airlines wants policy changes

HOUSTON – A Houston doctor forced to hide on an American Airlines flight because of his outfit, said he wanted to see the company act so that no one else would experience a similar experience.

In an interview with KHOU 11 on Wednesday afternoon, Dr. Tisha Rowe said that she and her 8 year old son were already on board a flight to the airport. Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston, Jamaica, June 30, when a flight attendant asked her to get off the plane.

RELATED: American Airlines apologizes to Houston doctor who had to "cover up" to board a flight

Once her son and she left, Dr. Rowe stated that they had been greeted by another flight attendant.

His comment was, "Do you have a jacket? "Said Dr. Rowe." I think, "Why? Why do you care if I have a jacket? I want to go home and see my family."

Dr. Rowe said that she had been told to cover herself or she would not be allowed to come back. The family doctor testified that after lengthy discussions that did not change the crew's mind, she asked for a blanket, wrapped it around, and headed down the hallway of the plane.

"I am, like, head down all the time," said Dr. Rowe. "I do not want to see anyone's face. I am embarrassed. I am humiliated. I did not even look at one passenger. I just looked up to make sure I was sitting properly.

Dr. Rowe said the crew did not choose anyone else, including a slimmer woman wearing shorter shorts.

"If I, being Leticia Rowe, were a white woman in the same suit, if they thought it was inappropriate, would I think she would have taken that white woman off the plane? "Absolutely not."

American Airlines issued the following statement on Tuesday:

"We were concerned about Ms. Rowe's comments and we contacted her and our team at Kingston Airport to gather more information about what had happened. We apologize to Dr. Rowe and his son for their experience and have fully reimbursed their trip. We are proud to serve customers from all walks of life and we are committed to providing a positive and safe travel experience to all those who fly with us. "

KHOU 11 reviewed the rules applicable to American Airlines passengers. He asks passengers "to dress properly, barefoot or offensive clothing is not allowed".

Dr. Rowe stated that she had exchanged online messages with AA officials, but she had not personally spoken to them. She described their written apology as a "good first step".

"Start by making those incidents reportable," said Dr. Rowe, asking what she would say to the CEO of AA. "All of these incidents must be classified and you must examine them all to see the race in the incident report. You must check for any implicit bias in your organization. "

Dr. Rowe also stated that she would like AA to create dress code tests for their employees.

"In this test, put different types of bodies in the same outfits and see how often your employees think that women of color are inappropriate compared to other women," she said.

Dr. Geoffrey Berg, Dr. Rowe's lawyer, said on Wednesday that he was in contact with air officials.

"We have taken some steps that I am not yet ready to discuss," said Berg. "Part of what we asked for is that they do exactly what she said, that is, solve the problem."


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