Delta Air Lines has banned the passenger who went on an expletive-laden rant in support for president-elect Donald Trump on board Flight 248 from Atlanta to Allentown on November 22.
“This individual displayed behaviour that was loud, rude and disrespectful to his fellow customers,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian wrote in a memo to employees. “He will never again be allowed on a Delta plane.”
In addition, Bastian announced that Delta will refund the tickets for passengers on board the flight.
A video of the incident, which shows the unruly passenger standing in the aisle of the aircraft hurling expletives at his fellow passengers, has been making its way around the internet for the past few days.
Delta was criticised in the immediate aftermath of the incident for failing to remove the disruptive passenger from the flight.
However, Delta later issued a statement apologizing for their inaction.
“We are sorry to our customers who experienced this disruption. We have followed up with the teams involved and all agree that this customer should not have been allowed to continue on the flight. Our responsibility for ensuring all customers feel safe and comfortable with Delta includes requiring civil behaviour from everyone. The behaviour we see in this video does not square with our training or culture and follow up will continue so we can better ensure our employees will know they will be fully supported to make the right decisions when these issues arise.”
In the memo, Bastian agreed that the passenger should have been removed from the flight.
“After questioning the customer, our team members made the best decision they could given the information they had and allowed him to remain on the flight. However, if our colleagues had witnessed firsthand what was shown in the video, there is no question they would have removed him from the aircraft.”
Delta Air Lines declined to comment when asked by Business Insider whether an all-out ban is an over-reaction to the incident.
Here’s Delta CEO Ed Bastian’s memo in its entirety:
Date: November 28, 2016
To: Delta Colleagues Worldwide
From: Ed Bastian
Subject: Disruptive Passenger on DL248
Thank you for the amazing job you did running our operation and taking care of our customers during the busy Thanksgiving holiday. At Delta, we strive to deliver a safe and reliable product while providing a customer experience that is second to none. You come to work every day prepared to serve our customers and to take care of each other while also dealing with the unexpected.
As you may have heard by now, last week a video began circulating around the internet showing a disruptive passenger on board a Delta flight. This individual displayed behaviour that was loud, rude and disrespectful to his fellow customers. After questioning the customer, our team members made the best decision they could given the information they had and allowed him to remain on the flight. However, if our colleagues had witnessed firsthand what was shown in the video, there is no question they would have removed him from the aircraft. He will never again be allowed on a Delta plane.
Part of being a reliable travel partner and a servant leader is acknowledging our mistakes so we can learn from them and respond more effectively in the future. Delta has apologised to the customers onboard that flight. We are also refunding those customers the cost of their tickets.
I also want to make sure all of you know we have your backs. The heightened tension in our society means that now more than ever we must require civility on our planes and in our facilities. We must stay true to Delta’s core values and treat one another with dignity and respect. We also must remain committed more than ever to the safety of our customers and our crew members. We will not tolerate anything less.
Again, thank you for all you do.
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