British Airways pilots and cabin crew told to use gender neutral greetings

British Airways pilots and cabin crew told to use gender neutral greetings. image; Twitter

British Airways pilots and cabin crew have been told to use gender neutral greetings in future when greeting passengers onboard aircraft.

BA said it will switch to more gender neutral terms instead fro passenger announcements, as part of efforts to celebrate “diversity and inclusion.” The move follows other airlines like Lufthansa, easyjet and Air Canada. “We celebrate diversity and inclusion and we’re committed to ensuring that all our customers feel welcome when travelling with us,” said a BA spokesman.

Sir Martin Sorrell, the founder of the advertising agency WPP, told The Sunday Telegraph that passengers are no longer bothered by the use of traditional greetings.

The decision to stop using gender-based adjectives comes as a result of a survey that revealed a change in British Airways’ customer’s attitudes.

An increased number of families have been travelling since Covid-19 restrictions have been relaxed, prompting the airline wanting to “make children feel included in announcements as well as respect new social norms.”
British Airways didn’t immediately say whether it would be instructing staff to avoid gendered personal greetings like ‘Sir’ and ‘Madam’, or what could replace these terms during onboard interactions.

BA is not the first airline to adopt a new inclusive vocabulary as Japan Airlines started using gender-neutral terms in 2020, in what it said was a bid to “create a positive atmosphere and treat everyone with respect”.

Consequently, Mark Morimoto, a Japan Airlines spokesman, explained last year that “greetings and announcements in English at the airport and in the cabin would use gender-neutral language” including using terms such as “all passengers” and “everyone”.

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Last month, Air Malta also announced it would adopt gender neutral language, with executive chairperson David G Curmi stating in an internal communication to staff members: “Historically we have welcomed our customers as ‘ladies and gentlemen’.

“Going forward, our customer facing staff will start adopting gender-neutral language such as ‘guests’ and more generic customer greetings.”

 


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Ron Howells

Ron actually started his working career as an Ophthalmic Technician- things changed when, during a band rehearsal, his amplifier blew up and he couldn’t get it fixed so he took a course at Birmingham University and ended up doing a degree course. He built up a chain of electronics stores and sold them as a franchise over 35 years ago. After five years touring the world Ron decided to move to Spain with his wife and son, a place they had visited over the years, and only bought the villa they live in because it has a guitar-shaped swimming pool!. Playing the guitar since the age of 7, he can often be seen, (and heard!) at beach bars and clubs along the length of the coast. He has always been interested in the news and constantly thrives to present his articles in an interesting and engaging way.

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