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Siberian Apr 19, 2013 9:16 PM

American Airlines
I was one of the thousands of passengers who were stranded due to American Airline's computer failure this past Tuesday (4/16/13). I remain concerned in how AA agent supervisors failed to assist two passengers with disabilities at the O'Hara Int'l Airport in Chicago that night. One female passenger with asthma was not assisted by an AA supervisor to retrieve her asthma medication from her luggage outside of security that night. She told me that she asked what would happen should she have an asthma attack, and the supervisor informed her that they would call 911. In another case, a different AA supervisor did not assist a disabled passenger in locating hotels in the area, as he was not in a position to sleep at the airport on a cot alongside the 500 other passengers there. The supervisor informed me that there was no internet access for passengers at airport for us to try to find a hotel for this person. Later the next morning, I saw a kiosk with a computer that offered internet access for passengers! It was clear that the female agent did not want to be bothered assisting this person with his disability in any way, shape, or form.

I intend to file a discrimination complaint. Little did these two supervisors know that I have enforced civil rights laws for a different Federal agency, and am very well aware of how these are enforced. I am awaiting a phone call next week from an employee with the Department of Transportation who is going to assist me with filing my complaints against American Airlines. And I will do, precisely that. They should have helped these two passengers, and I am going to make sure that American Airlines will never again discriminate against a passenger ever again.

Please be advised that the Act that protects passengers from discrimination is the Air Carrier Access Act. The U.S. Department of Transportation enforces this Act. You can contact the U.S. Department of Transportation directly at 1-800-778-4838 if you witnessed or experienced an act of discrimination by American Airlines or any other Air Carrier who is covered under this Act. The U.S. Department of Transportation can guide you in how to file a discrimination complaint and what your rights are as a person who is disabled.

This website, here, where we can post our experiences is a good place for venting and making other consumers know of our experiences. But if you want to do some good, then take the extra step and file a complaint with the appropriate agency that has jurisdiction to correct the injustice you are experiencing. Not only will it provide an extra opportunity to vent, but you will be helping to protect other travelers' rights as well. When you pay for a service, the airline you paid has the responsibility to deliver those services, and they never have the right to mistreat you or treat you in an inhumane manner. When you take this extra step, not only are you protecting yourself, but you are protecting other people from harm. When you are dependent on agents at the airport for getting you home, you are in a sense powerless, totally dependent on them. It is very wrong for those agents to abuse their power and when that abuse happens it is imperative that steps are taken to prevent that abuse from continuing. In the two cases of discrimination I personally witnessed which I cited above, the two passengers were not treated in a humane manner. And I cannot allow for that to continue with American Airlines. And so I have chosen to take the legal steps available to me to ensure that this does not happen again to someone else.


jimworcs Apr 19, 2013 11:19 PM

Totally agree, please keep us updated on the outcome.

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