Grounded for going up a dress size: confessions of Emirates cabin crew
Emirates flight attendants have their weight monitored by airline bosses and may be suspended for being obese, former staff of the airline have claimed.
Describing the airline authorities as “the burden police”, former cabin crew members say their weight was tracked by bosses who put some staff into an “Look Administration Programme” in the event that they went up a costume dimension.
Employees are reportedly instructed that is to make sure they’re placing on a “glamorous Emirates face” always.
Ex-staff additionally allege that they had been threatened with pay cuts if they didn’t sustain with the UAE-based airline’s picture coverage.
Karla Bayson, 36, who labored for Emirates for 9 years till 2021, instructed Insider that this coverage included no tattoos seen whereas in uniform, solely purple, clear or impartial nail polish and neat hair always. All fairly customary for customer-facing airline employees.
What was much less customary, Bayson mentioned, was seeing colleagues who had placed on weight being instructed by bosses to “lose it.” She claims that each two weeks after a warning, they’d be “checked once more” to see that that they had dropped the additional kilos.
She additionally instructed reporters that some employees had been suspended from inflight duties for gaining weight.
“In the event that they see you coming out from the uniform, they’re going to place you on the bottom,” she mentioned.
Bayson claimed the airline was strict on ladies who had given delivery, generally grounding them till they “lose what’s required”.
She says she suffered from nervousness when pregnant in 2020, as she had gained 44 lbs (20kg).
One other nameless Emirates supply instructed the web site that it’s widespread for workers to “inform” on one another relating to weight acquire.
“A tradition of telling on one another to administration is prevalent,” mentioned the supply, a former HR enterprise companion who labored there for 5 years.
These within the Look Administration Programme have common conferences scheduled with HR advisers, the supply mentioned, whereas being given weight-reduction plan and train plans to comply with.
If the burden isn’t misplaced shortly, they claimed, flight attendants are topic to a collection of warnings, weight checks and even pay cuts.
The allegations had been backed up by one other nameless supply who mentioned that they had labored for the airline for 10 years.
They mentioned that the airline tracks cabin crew who have to go up a uniform dimension – if this occurs inside six months or beneath, “the questions start”.
This supply estimated that solely round “150 folks out of 25,000” had been on the programme at any given time.
One other ex flight attendant, Maya Dukaric, claims that “weight police” employees would strategy some crew members at airports, saying, “Hey, babe. It’s good to sluggish it down.”
Journey trade analyst Henry Harteveldt instructed Insider that, whereas most European and US airways had dropped official picture insurance policies, a number of airways internationally nonetheless see flight attendants as a part of their advertising technique, resulting in strict look tips.
“Some airways which have stricter necessities are typically very targeted on their model,” he mentioned.
“They view flight attendants as one of the seen and most necessary representations of that model picture to the general public.”
Although the Emirates web site doesn’t give any public-facing details about its look coverage, it does state in its hiring tips that cabin crew ought to be “bodily match for this demanding function with a wholesome Physique Mass Index (BMI)”, in addition to stating that girls having to put on heels and “a full face of make-up”.
In September 2021, Duygu Karaman instructed the Mirror that she stop her job with the airline in 2019 after the “strict” and “upsetting” weight monitoring by the airline.
After a member of employees complained that she was “too heavy”, Karaman claims that she was requested to shed extra pounds, after which monitored for a yr to verify that she had stored the burden off.
A spokesperson for Emirates instructed The Unbiased: “As a world airline, we deal with the wellbeing of our staff with the best precedence, and we consider being match and wholesome, each bodily and mentally, is a essential facet in them finishing up their duties safely and successfully.
“It might not all the time be obvious to our clients, however the obligations of our cabin crew are huge, and their capacity to affect and obtain secure outcomes when wanted, requires in depth coaching and a minimal customary of bodily health.
“We’re happy with our colleagues who type Emirates’ cabin crew: who present unwavering, distinctive service and who assist preserve the protection and high quality of operations and repair Emirates is thought for. We don’t touch upon inside insurance policies or procedures or particular, confidential instances of present or previous staff”.