The flight attendants union of American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) on Friday, asked the business to recall the new uniforms, which according to allegations, are causing many health problems. 50,000 of the attendants and pilots were asked to wear these uniforms a few months back. However, the complaints have been pouring in since October.
The world’s largest airline company by fleet size, American Airlines, though, has said that the uniforms were tested thoroughly before they were introduced. This is the first time the company has changed the uniform in close to 30 years. They were introduced to make all the flight attendants have the same look.
Health Problems Caused By the New Uniforms
But the union disagrees, saying that the new dresses are causing rashes, respiratory problems, burning skin, itching, eye irritation, hives, and headaches. Plus, the female employees have also complained that the dresses are extremely sheer and not right for the workplace. A total of 1,600 health complaints have been filed by the cabin crews in the last couple of months.
After the complaints began to surface, American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) went ahead and offered alternative uniforms to the attendants and pilots. Representing 26,000 American flight attendants, the union, however, says that the offer doesn’t go far enough. The union statement said, “We feel a remedy that excludes a full recall of the uniform fails to adequately protect our members”.
In the meantime, a spokesman of the airline said that a third round of lab testing has been carried out to determine what is causing the problem. The test results have been shared with the union.
Uniform Vendor Has Dubious Record
The vendor, Twin Hill, which supplied these uniforms has less than perfect record. Alaska Airlines also ordered uniforms from this company for their flight attendants in 2011. However, the employees of Alaska Airlines too started filing health complaints. The business had to eventually withdraw these uniforms in 2014.
Alaska issued a statement saying, “Ultimately we were looking for certain sourcing standards to ensure the safety of the garments”.
Some people said that the Disperse Orange 37/76 chemical was causing the problems with the staff at Alaska Airlines. Twin Hill denied this and filed a court case. The court ruled in their favor, proving these claims to be false.
This time, though, the parent company of Twin Hill, Tailored Brands, haven’t yet issued any statement. The company also owns retailer Men’s Warehouse.