July 15, 2014

On the diversity of culture, faith, and opinions

As New York’s Hometown Airline, we’re no strangers to diverse opinions and cultures. After all, New York is THE cultural melting pot of the world, and New Yorkers are world renowned for their ability to share their opinions. We’re also proud to have customers and crewmembers that represent this rich mix of cultural backgrounds. So being a forward thinking airline with the deepest respect for the various cultures and beliefs of our 30 million customers a year, you can imagine our crewmembers’ collective pain when we’re accused of discriminatory practices, as is the subject of much public discussion stemming from this article in the Palm Beach Post.

The story presented by a customer is certainly riveting, and we understand that many who have read it feel entitled to get all the juicy details. However, out of respect for the privacy of our customers – even those who tell stories we don’t necessarily agree with – we will not share additional details for public discourse and will only say that the story presented in media reports in no way reflects the accounts from our crewmembers or customers on board.

We recognize that many observers of the story desire all the details so they can make their own judgments, and for many their opinion will be set regardless of any additional detail shared. We just request those who do feel the need to pass judgment take a moment to reflect on any of their past experiences with JetBlue and our award winning service, and think about the diversity of the 80,000 daily customers we serve before taking every story they see as fact.

JetBlue does not engage in discrimination on any basis. Maintaining the highest standards of safety for all of our customers and crew is our primary concern and JetBlue’s fundamental value. The decision to remove the customer from the flight in this instance was made in support of that value.

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22 Comments on “On the diversity of culture, faith, and opinions”

  • Posted by Rudi Stettner on July 15, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    Absent any plausible explanation on your part, I believe Dr. Rosenberg. Accordingly, Jet Blue will not be my airline of choice. Your crew tried and passed sentence on the doctor. I will do likewise

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 15, 2014 at 4:26 pm

    As we stated in our post, we recognize that many observers of the story desire all the details so they can make their own judgments, and for many their opinion will be set regardless of any additional detail shared.
    Our desire here was to help inform observers why we weren’t sharing our internal reports, and hopefully get some readers to pause and think about our long established level of service to our customers before deciding against us. While we’re disappointed you’ve decided our guilt in the matter, we respect that you’re entitled to those opinions.

  • Posted by F. Ends on July 15, 2014 at 6:29 pm

    “…we will not share additional details for public discourse and will only say that the story presented in media reports in no way reflects the accounts from our crewmembers or customers on board.”

    As they say on the ‘internets’, “cool story, bro’ but without pics ‘m not buying”.

    In other words, your failure to present alternative witnesses to Dr. Rosenberg’s (AND her colleague’s) version makes JetBlue the loser on this incident.

    “We recognize that many observers of the story desire all the details so they can make their own judgments…

    Stop insulting us! Your customers are simply looking for ALL of the facts, so we can determine whether its safe to fly on Jet Blue without wearing duct tape on our mouths.

    “….take a moment to reflect on any of their past experiences with JetBlue and our award winning service”,

    Thats great, you make the planes run on time!

    “And think about the diversity of the 80,000 daily customers we serve before taking every story they see as fact.”

    In other words, ‘please allow us to discriminate against Jews to placate all the OTHER people we sell seats to..’

    “JetBlue does not engage in discrimination on any basis. Maintaining the highest standards of safety for all of our customers and crew is our primary concern and JetBlue’s fundamental value. The decision to remove the customer from the flight in this instance was made in support of that value.”

    PROVE IT.

    Or perhaps start selling tickets to flights to Asia. By your continued “explanations” as to why you won’t bring forth other witnesses, you are certainly digging yourself a hole deep enough to reach China.

  • Posted by Michael Pierce on July 15, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    ” out of respect for the privacy of our customers [...] we will not share additional details for public discourse”

    With all due respect, this is a mistake. Your PR department may have confined you that taking the high road is the best approach, but the general population, who only receive one version of events, will feel JetBlue’s reluctance to respond a defacto admission of guilt. I’m sorry to say that this decision to remain silent is a corporate blunder you’ll come to regret.

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 15, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    Michael,

    We certainly recognize the implications of holding back information from the public who’d like to see it, but outside a legal request for it, the privacy of our customers takes precedent.

  • Posted by Joshua Ben-Yitzhak on July 15, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    I have been a loyal jetBlue customer for the past decade. I am very disappointed in this news. Since jetBlue refuses to disclose the details of what happened, myself, my family and many of my friends will have to support Dr Rosenberg. Given the uncivilized and confrontational nature of how Palestinians and Pro-Palestinians have historically protested against Israel and Jews, I have no choice but to believe Dr Rosenberg.

    I will not fly your airline again. My family will not fly your airline again. And I will discourage everyone that I know not to fly your airline which supports an anti-Semitic flight crew!

  • Posted by Ed Storm on July 15, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    This is your explanation? That you kicked a Jew off your airplane because it angered some Arabs?

    Antisemitism = JetBlue. I will never fly your airlines again. And I have started a Boycott JetBlue Facebook page.

    Good bye, JetBlue

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 15, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    Ed,

    Our crewmembers made a safety based decision based on the actions they personally witnessed, not because of the religious or cultural beliefs of anyone involved. We understand you and many others may have decided to believe something different and respect your right to those beliefs.

  • Posted by Mircea Goldstein on July 15, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Until proven otherwise, I believe JetBlue is defending a racist and discriminatory action by at least one of their employees. The victim, dr Lisa Rosenberg was discriminated solely on the basis of being Jewish.
    As a consequence I will do my best to get the story out to as many peoples as possible and will not use your services again until this matter is clarified.

  • Posted by Richar, MW on July 16, 2014 at 8:25 am

    Are people really going to be subject to “banning.” as your own Facebook post threatened, for continuing to discuss this on Facebook? Here’s your official post:

    JetBlue Airways Your comments and posts have been noted, repeated spamming posts will be subject to removal or banning. – Denise

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 16, 2014 at 8:32 am

    Richar,

    As outlined in our Facebook page description: https://www.facebook.com/JetBlue/info?ref=hl

    We encourage everyone to carry on a healthy conversation on our page, but comments that solicit for non-approved third party services, ‘spam’ the wall, use excessive profanity, attack individuals, or otherwise denigrate any protected group are subject to removal by the page admins.

    Repeated violations of those requests of our community are subject to banning. Banned users are welcome to continue their conversations in another location.

  • Posted by Riva Reznichenko on July 16, 2014 at 8:43 am

    HYPOCRITE!
    WHY DIDN’T YOU REMOVE THE MUSLIM WOMAN?

    Are you the true AMERICA JetBlue???

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 16, 2014 at 8:44 am

    Riva,

    JetBlue does not discriminate and the decision to remove the customer was not made based on their inclusion in any protected class. The crewmembers conferred and made a safety based decision based on the activity they themselves observed.

  • Posted by Liora Reznichenko on July 16, 2014 at 9:20 am

    I’m sorry, I am a tad confused. You kicked off a woman, a Jewish doctor, off of a flight in a market that serves primarily people of Jewish background and you feel no need for an explanation on your part?? My family, having a second home in the northern Miami area, and many friends of ours, uses your airline to travel back and forth to these homes and we are afraid that until you explain as to WHY exactly Dr. Rosenberg was in fact kicked off her flight, we will not be giving our business to your airline and will be sharing this negative experience via all social media platforms. Perhaps THEN, JetBlue, you might feel motivated to be more open regarding your decisons.

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 16, 2014 at 9:21 am

    Liora,

    As we stated, “Maintaining the highest standards of safety for all of our customers and crew is our primary concern and JetBlue’s fundamental value. The decision to remove the customer from the flight in this instance was made in support of that value.”

  • Posted by Shari S. on July 16, 2014 at 9:41 am

    Award winning service does not excuse discrimination. Your failure to explain what happened is working against you here. Saying that you are a good airline is not an adequate counter. It’s like saying the Nazis made the trains run on time.

  • Posted by Heidi Kohl DiSavino on July 16, 2014 at 11:19 am

    I came here looking for a reasonable explanation, because the story I heard/read did not seem plausible. However, your lack of response on this matter is causing me to deem Dr. Rosenberg’s version much more believable than once thought. This is, in my opinion, a situation where transparency will benefit you more than anyone else. If she acted inappropriately and in a dangerous manner, then let it be known. Otherwise, it looks like you have something to hide. I truly hope this is not the case. Unless I hear something from JetBlue explaining their actions, my family will no longer fly with you.

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 16, 2014 at 12:02 pm

    Heidi,

    While we appreciate the desire for people to want the details, our responsibility will continue to be to the privacy of all the customers involved. You’re welcome to look through various online sources where other customers on board have come forward with their own accounts.

  • Posted by F. Ends on July 16, 2014 at 12:41 pm

    “Posted by JetBlue on July 15, 2014 at 6:50 pm
    We certainly recognize the implications of holding back information from the public who’d like to see it, but outside a legal request for it, the privacy of our customers takes precedent.”

    Can’t wait to see that!

  • Posted by Yosef Hershkop on July 16, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    Hi JetBlue team,

    I’m not a frequent flyer but I have flown several times in the past 24 months specifically the NY FL routes. When iv’e been happy with Jet Blue service I have always publicly commended the team using my different social media outlets.

    Your simply not being honest about this story and that scares me considering the ramifications this story can have.

    Jet Blue needs to answer the following questions. 1) Why shouldn’t we believe a seemingly normal successful doctor who doesn’t have a history of false lawsuits. 2) What’s Jet Blue’s policies in regards to people voicing their political and religious opinions. 3) Why weren’t both parties to this altercation kicked off. 4) A strong rebuttal to claims that Jewish passengers are discriminated against.

    I truly hope this story comes to a nice ending for all parties involved.

    Thank You

  • Posted by Dov W on July 16, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    I too came here to find out JetBlue’s version of the story, but I find your lack of response suspect. What violation of privacy would ensue from releasing details of the incident without revealing any names?

  • Posted by JetBlue on July 16, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Don,

    You’re welcome to look around for additional reports. We are aware of a few news outlets and blogs that have stories more reflective of multiple reports from our customers and crewmembers, but there will not be an official release our reports without a legal request.

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