Following the horrible incident that transpired on a United flight Sunday night from Chicago to Louisville, United’s management team somehow managed to make things even worse. United’s CEO issued two statements, both of which were horribly insulting, apologizing that the customer had to be “re-accommodated,” etc. I’ve had respect for United’s new and well regarded CEO up until now, but this was just terrible and undid any goodwill he has generated up until now.
I fear this is probably too little too late, and of course it comes after United
lost “re-accommodated” a billion dollars worth of market cap in a day, but I guess better late than never. United’s CEO has just issued the following statement:
The truly horrific event that occurred on this flight has elicited many responses from all of us: outrage, anger, disappointment. I share all of those sentiments, and one above all: my deepest apologies for what happened. Like you, I continue to be disturbed by what happened on this flight and I deeply apologize to the customer forcibly removed and to all the customers aboard. No one should ever be mistreated this way.
I want you to know that we take full responsibility and we will work to make it right.
It’s never too late to do the right thing. I have committed to our customers and our employees that we are going to fix what’s broken so this never happens again. This will include a thorough review of crew movement, our policies for incentivizing volunteers in these situations, how we handle oversold situations and an examination of how we partner with airport authorities and local law enforcement. We’ll communicate the results of our review by April 30th.
I promise you we will do better.
Finally! Was it that hard to:
- Acknowledge how horrible the incident was
- Apologize to the customer for what actually transpired, rather than just for the fact that he was removed from the flight
- Acknowledge that the customer was treated in a way that no one should be
- Take full responsibility for what happened and to make it right
- Admit that their response up until now has sucked, but that they’re going to do the right thing
- Promise to provide an update to the public about what happened
Maybe too little to late, but at least that’s a real apology. If only United had responded this was shortly after the incident. I just wish they’d also apologize for their response up until now, which has been abysmal. They shouldn’t get a pass on that.
This has been a quickly-moving story with myriad updates. The full coverage of the United incident from the One Mile at a Time team is as follows: