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APFA National President Bob Ross Responds to Qatar Airways CEO Akbar al-Baker’s Sexist, Ageist Remarks

July 11, 2017 (Fort Worth, TX)  “As if we didn’t need an incentive already to speak out against Qatar Airways, the latest statement by its CEO Akbar al-Baker should do the trick. Speaking at a Dublin event launching service for his airline in Ireland, he called his U.S. competitors “crap airlines” and noted that his flight attendants’ average age was 26. He then announced that on U.S. carriers you would be served by “grandmothers.” Calling his remarks reprehensible and sexist would be an understatement.

“Each day our passengers board our aircraft with confidence, knowing that they are in the care of well-seasoned and highly trained professionals. Would Mr. Akbar al-Baker question the age of the flight attendants who thwarted Richard Reid, the “shoe bomber,” or those who evacuated the aircraft that landed on the Hudson River? We are proud of our members who are not revered for their youth, but for their roles as safety professionals and first responders.

“Maybe it is time to reconsider Qatar’s membership in the One World Alliance since he views U.S. airlines as “crap carriers.” Al-Baker’s crude remarks underscores why we are continuing to fight the Gulf carriers and their illegal government subsidies.”