TUI staff have been accused of sexism in the way they distributed stickers
TUI staff have been accused of sexism in the way they distributed stickers

TUI Airways issues ‘sexist’ stickers to children on flight

TUI staff gave boys ‘future pilot’ stickers, while girls were issued with ‘future cabin crew’ stickers

Joanna Whitehead
Thursday 23 August 2018 10:50

TUI Airways faces accusations of sexism after its staff issued “future captain” stickers to boys and “future cabin crew” stickers to girls during recent flights.

Dame Gillian Morgan, 65, witnessed TUI staff issuing the controversial stickers to children when flying from Bristol to Cyprus on 15 August.

After looking closer, Dame Morgan realised that the stickers had been assigned according to the children’s gender.

The stickers at the centre of the sexism storm

Dame Morgan told The Metro that she was “absolutely sure” it was a deliberate decision to sort the stickers by gender, describing it as “deeply sexist”.

“The stickers were gender neutral, but it’s the way that they were handed out that makes it complicated. It happens implicitly all the time.”

Dame Morgan, who is the chair of NHS providers, a doctor and a scientist, acknowledged that the stickers may have been produced in good faith, but that TUI was responsible for their staff issuing them equally among boys and girls.

Other TUI passengers also expressed their disapproval on social media. Linzi Williams tweeted: “Lovely touch by @TUIUK flying out to Corfu Friday by giving children TUI stickers and activity sheet.... not so lovely that all the boys were given ‘future pilot’ stickers and the girls ‘future cabin crew’?! Sexist much?”

A spokesperson for TUI made the following statement to The Independent: “We’re sorry to hear a small number of customers have been upset by this. We think it has just been a simple mix-up since our future pilot and cabin crew stickers are designed for use for any child regardless of gender.

“The stickers are part of our activity packs which are intended to be used by crew to interact, engage with and create special moments for our customers on their holiday.

“The feedback we’ve had so far this summer has been overwhelmingly positive. Children fall in love with flying when they go on their holidays with us and we want to encourage their dreams of becoming future pilots and crew members.”

Dame Morgan said: “We desperately need more women to do science, maths and engineering, but little things like this take us backwards by providing restricting roles.

“TUI were trying, I think, to do the right thing, but fundamentally missed the point.”

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