Jun 22, 2017

Woman sues El Al for moving her seat

About half a year ago Mrs. Rena Rabinowitz announced she is suing El Al for having asked her to move and change her seat (in business class) in order to accommodate a Haredi male who did not want to sit next to her. Rabinowitz acquiesced and moved, but then sued.

As an aside, to digress, the attempt to move someone else is wrong. If someone does nto want to sit next to a woman, or to move his seat for any reason, he should be the one moved - not move the other person.

the court case has come to an end with a court-mandated agreement.

The Marker is reporting that El Al and Rabinowitz have come to an agreement, mandated and approved by the courts, by which El Al stewards and stewardesses will no longer be allowed to ask passengers to move and requesting such a move based on gender is illegal. El Al committed to training its employees to that effect. As well, they agreed on compensation to the tune of 6500nis.

One interesting point in the case is when El Al claimed they will not take into account any such seating request (i.e. to not be placed next to a female) in advance but during the flight if it helps passengers as a way of providing better service, being considerate of someone's religious sensitivities,  and helping the flight take off on time, they will try to accommodate. The judge then asked what would El Al stewards do if a passenger requests to not sit next to an Arab. El Al rejected any such accommodation outright and said that such a request would be immediately rejected, even at the expense of causing a delay.

El Al assumed it is not acceptable to discriminate against an Arab, and they considered asking one to move seats to be such discrimination, but when it is a woman they somehow no longer consider it discrimination.

Anyways, as per the agreement, El Al now has to find other solutions when such a situation will arise, as they committed to not asking women to move. Again, I don't know why the man was not being asked to move, considering he was the one with the problem, and maybe that will be El Al's solution in the future.

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