Is this airline’s uniform making staff sick?
Toxic travel bug
Airline staff usually wear their uniform with pride, after all they're often designed by celebrated fashion designers and mark the staff out as the elite of the skies, but in the case of American Airlines that pride has exited through the forward door along with the staff's health. According to Racked, American Airlines delivered new uniforms to its staff last September and "...at least 3,000 flight attendants who, since the introduction of the uniforms, have reported experiencing symptoms including respiratory problems, light-headedness, fainting, rashes and stopped periods. Some flight attendants have been able to keep working through their symptoms, while others have stopped flying altogether."
Racked reports that after receiving over "3,000 complaints from employees experiencing reactions to the uniform," the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (APFA) which represents "more than 26,000 American Airlines flight attendants" conducted tests on the uniforms, "...and found that one piece of the uniform, a short-sleeved jacket, was found to have levels of cadmium higher than acceptable textile industry standard. The APFA's tests also determined that the uniform contained formaldehyde, nickel and tetrachlorophenol - a corrosive chemical know to cause eye irritation." But it's still not enough evidence for American Airlines to make a uniform swap.
According to Racked American Airlines conducted their own tests and their results come back as "safe" to wear. This result could have differed from the APFA result because every garment has a slightly different textile/chemical composition and American Airlines may have gotten lucky by testing the few uniforms that are in the safety zone. Which is underwhelming news for the staff, American Airlines are standing by the uniforms and refusing to pull them. Their only concessions include teaming up with another supplier to provide staff with an alternative to the current uniform and announcing they won't renew their contract with current uniform supplier, Twin Hill, when it expires in 2020.
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