British Airways recently apologized for refusing to issue a plane ticket to a girl who has Down syndrome. This all began when this twelve year olds’ mom called the airline to book a ticket for her daughter to travel from London to Scotland to visit her aunt and told the agent that her daughter has Down syndrome but is very independent and that she wanted her to travel as an unaccompanied minor. The mom said she was told by the customer service agent that "we don't take children with Down syndrome." When Saunders asked why, the agent responded: "Because we've had problems in the past." This led to a complaint that resulted in a British Airways spokesperson apologizing, stating their customer service agent had made a mistake and that they will ensure the matter is addressed including instituting a companywide disability awareness program and additional training for all customer service agents.
It almost always comes down to training. Such a simple thing for employers to put in place before there is an incident such as this one.
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