Kayla Eubanks was told she could not board her flight due to the way she was dressed has received an apology from Southwest Airlines after the video of the encounter went viral online.
via BuzzFed News
In a detailed thread on Twitter, Kayla Eubanks shared with her followers the events she said took place at LaGuardia Airport on Oct. 6 as she attempted to make her way from New York to Chicago while wearing a black halter top.
She told BuzzFeed News that staff at the boarding gate refused to let her on her scheduled flight because she was in breach of the airline’s dress code.
“Lewd, obscene, and offensive — those were the words of choice,” said Eubanks.
In a statement to BuzzFeed News, a spokesperson for the airline said that it had apologized directly and issued Eubanks a refund as a “gesture of goodwill.”
The 22-year-old explained that she would have typically gone for a different look for the airport, but on this occasion, she chose to wear a halter top and did not imagine that it would be an issue.
“Generally I wear, like, T-shirts, sweats, or whatever to the airport, but it was supposed to be like 77 degrees in Chicago when I landed. It’s only an hour-and-a-half, two-hour flight.”
Eubanks said that after dropping off her luggage and making her way through the airport, she arrived at the boarding gate where a member of Southwest Airlines refused to allow her on the flight.
In footage shared online, Eubanks can be heard clarifying with staff that the reason she wasn’t being allowed through the gate was her halter top. She responded by asking the member of the airline staff to produce the policy, which the worker was not able to do.
According to the airline’s policy, the dress code advises customers to: “Dress to impress. While Southwest’s dress code is relaxed and casual, you will be expected to present a clean, well groomed, and tasteful appearance.”
The airline did not provide clarity on what could be considered a breach of the dress code but shared that it did its best to “promote a family-centric environment.”
Following a back-and-forth exchange with airline staff, Eubanks was finally able to board the flight on the requirement that she wore a shirt loaned to her by another member of the staff.
We have to wonder if another woman was wearing the same top would the airline call her outfit “lewd, obscene or patently offensive,” things that make you go hmm. Regardless in the end Kayla was given an apology and refund.