NAACP Issues American Airlines Travel Advisory

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The NAACP has issued a travel advisory against American Airlines, warning African-American travelers to tread lightly, for their safety might be compromised if they choose to fly with the airline.

The social justice organisation has documented what it calls "a pattern of disturbing incidents reported by African-American passengers, specific to American Airlines", according to its statement.

In the advisory, issued Tuesday night, the NAACP urged African Americans "to exercise caution, in that booking and boarding flights on American Airlines could subject them to disrespectful, discriminatory, or unsafe conditions".

An American Airlines spokesperson said the airline is "disappointed" about the advisory.

However, in one instance raised by the group, an African-American female passenger and their fellow traveller, who was white, were booked in first class seats.

The NAACP did not give names of the people involved in the incidents or indicate when they took place, and American did not comment on the specific allegations.

Last week, a 24-year-old black Harvard Law School student and her 4-month-old baby were removed from an American Airlines flight after she reportedly asked for her stroller back from checked baggage because of a delayed flight.

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A man said he was required to relinquish his purchased seats on a flight from Washington, D.C., to Raleigh-Durham, N.C., because he responded to "disrespectful and discriminatory comments directed toward him by two unruly white passengers".

The NAACP says it believes the airline may have a problem with racial insensitivity and bias. "We have reached out to the NAACP and are eager to meet with them to listen to their issues and concerns". The listed offenses mostly involve people being removed from flights.

Spokeswoman Shannon Gilson added in a statement that it would invite the NAACP to the airline's Fort Worth, Texas, headquarters. The flight bound for NY faced a five-hour delay due to weather and passengers were asked to return to the terminal's waiting area after boarding. The mission statement of the NAACP states that it "seeks to remove all barriers of racial discrimination".

Lawal was saying goodbye to her sister who was visiting from IN and about to board an American Airlines flight.

American Airlines CEO Doug Parker sent an internal memo to American staff addressing the controversy, which was provided to Bustle by the company.

The NAACP said it will keep its advisory in effect until their concerns are addressed and corrected. But until that happens, the travel advisory will remain in place.

In August, the NAACP issued a travel advisory for the state of Missouri in aftermath of high-profile incidents of police brutality.