Uniform shows too much flesh: Cathay Pacific flight crew

Uniform shows too much flesh: Cathay Pacific flight crew
Flight attendants (left and center) for Cathay Pacific are seen arriving at the international airport in Hong Kong.

Our uniforms are too revealing and they may lead to sexual harassment, complained some female Cathay Pacific flight attendants.

So, please redesign the uniforms.

The union representing Cathay Pacific's cabin crew - the Flight Attendants Union (FAU) - has complained that the blouses are too short.

And they show off too much flesh when the attendants bend down to get items out of a food trolley, reported the South China Morning Post (SCMP).

The union also said the skirts, introduced in 2011, are too tight-fitting, but management has so far rejected its pleas for a modesty makeover.

FAU honorary secretary Michelle Choi said: "The blouse is too short and does not cover enough. Whenever a flight attendant bends down, her waistline is exposed.

"We believe the company intentionally does this to make us look a bit sexier and to let the passenger see more."

Ms Choi said she believed the uniforms were contributing to an apparent rise in incidents of sexual harassment of cabin crew by passengers.

She estimates sexual harassment cases now affect female cabin crew members once every 10 flights.

And she thinks that part of the reason for the rise in such cases is because they treat their passengers so well.

"Some of the Marco Polo Club (frequent flier) members think they can do things to us because they are privileged and we somehow allow it. That is very bad."

Guidelines

Ms Choi said that when such cases are reported to the flight managers, they always say it is the crew member's decision whether or not to call the police.

"They tell you, 'It's your decision. Do you want to delay the flight by calling the police?'" she said.

She called on the company to issue specific guidelines on how to deal with instances of harassment on flights.

The matter is expected to be raised during a meeting with management on May 13.

In a written response, Cathay Pacific said it had modified the design of the uniforms in response to staff feedback prior to the official launch in 2011.

On the issue of harassment, the company said: "We do not tolerate any form of harassment and take the issue of sexual harassment very seriously."

This article was published on May 6 in The New Paper.

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