United Airlines is under major fire after news broke on Sunday that two teenage girls were barred by a gate attendant from boarding a flight from Denver to Minneapolis because they were wearing leggings.
After being blasted on social media for their “intrusive and sexist” policy, the airline released a statement about their decision to not allow the girls to board the flight. Jonathan Guerin, a spokesman for United, confirmed that two teenage girls were told they could not board a flight from Denver to Minneapolis because their leggings violated the company’s dress code policy for “pass travelers,” a company benefit that allows United employees and their dependents to travel for free on a standby basis.
He said, “It’s not that we want our standby travelers to come in wearing a suit and tie or that sort of thing. We want people to be comfortable when they travel as long as it’s neat and in good taste for that environment.” In a series of tweets, the company said the incident was not simply the result of an overzealous gate agent, but that United Airlines reserved the right to deny service to anyone its employees deemed to be inappropriately dressed.
The company’s defense just wasn’t good enough for past, present or potential customers. Model Chrissy Teigen who has flown with the airline, tweeted:
Guerin says the company is aware of the criticism they’ve received, but said they were “working as hard as they can to tell people what is actually going on.”