United Airlines: Rethink Your Dress Code

For those of you who have immersed yourself in the Twitter world, you probably saw that United Airlines was trending and usually when a company or service is trending, it’s not always for the best reasons.

On Sunday morning, two young girls were banned from a flight boarding from Denver to Minneapolis due to their attire. The two girls were both wearing leggings and due to United Airlines policy, this was “inappropriate” for the flight. A bystander took it to Twitter, outraged by the ridiculous dress code for the flight and wasn’t afraid to express her anger.

After further investigation into this issue, and a lot of back and forth between the United Airlines Twitter account and the public, it surfaced that the dress code for those who are “pass travelers” requires that you dress in a more business casual manner. In this case, this meant no leggings on the flight. Pass travelers are United employees and their family members who are allowed to fly for free. The dress code is enforced because they are technically a representation of the company, therefore the way you present yourself, even on a flight, is important to the company.

While it makes sense that the United Airlines agent was just following procedure for pass travelers, and it has come to the attention of the bystander who originally tweeted at United that these are just the rules, I still question the policy all together.

Yes, you should present yourself in a positive and appropriate way if you are in a situation where you are representing a company, even if it’s indirect representation. However, the fact that two young girls, who were teenagers according to The New York Times, were told they are inappropriate for wearing leggings is crazy to me. Leggings are comfortable and practical and based on what I’ve read about the whole situation, neither of the girls were dressed in a way that was obscene or caused discomfort for any other passengers – SO WHY DOES IT MATTER?

I wish that we lived in a world where what a girl wears is not constantly being shamed, ridiculed, and punished for wearing clothes that are really not a cause for panic. Why are leggings on young teenage girls seen as inappropriate???? Why are we still sexualizing the clothes that young girls wear????

So basically, my issue with this situation with United Airlines is not that the agent was doing his or her job, but that this rule against leggings even exists at all, especially when it’s enforced on young girls. All in all, what we wear should not be an issue that makes front page news.

(source: The New York Times)


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