The crews union, Unite, stated that the airline was “joining the 21st century” by allowing a change in the dress code.
The “mixed fleet” crop of women hired recently were restricted to skirts, unless exempted on religious or medical grounds. Apparently 83 percent of the crew wanted to wear trousers for warmth or protection, according to the union.
“Not only is the choice to wear trousers a victory for equality it is also a victory for common sense and testament to the organizing campaign of our members,” said Unite regional officer Matt Smith. “Female cabin crew no longer have to shiver in the cold, wet and snow of wintery climates, but also can be afforded the protection of trousers at destinations where there is a risk of malaria or the Zika virus.”
Female cabin crew working for British Airways will now be allowed to wear trousers at work following a ruling described as bringing the— Leonid Lisanov (@LisanovStrong) February 8, 2016
One small step...Female British Airways cabin crew win the right to wear trousers https://t.co/Xbp346og6m— J.P. Rodriguez (@EqualandProud) February 8, 2016
So,finally decided who wears the pants on #BritishAirways.CabinCrew win 2 year old battle to wear trousers instead of skirts on flights!!!— Krishna Kacker (@krishnakacker) February 7, 2016
This is surely a step forward in giving people more freedom to choose what they wear, and doing away with the sexist approach in professions such as flight attendants. Other airlines are also taking part in small but important changes; female crew members of Ryanair, for example, are no longer required to pose in bikinis for its annual calendar.
The airline industry has always been particularly sexist toward females, with some airlines making them parade in swimwear in order to be selected and imposing a wide range of rules regarding dress code and appearance.
However, this step by British Airways is a hope that in the future cabin crews will be chosen on the basis of their capabilities of being a good host, rather than on their bikini body. Allowing women to wear trousers too, gives females from more religious and cultural backgrounds to be part of the airline industry.
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