SriLankan Airlines staff in national mission for Sri Lanka braving Coronavirus face discrimination
ECONOMYNEXT – Staff of SriLankan Airlines who are flying aircraft braving a global Coronavirus epidemic keeping Sri Lanka connecting to the world, bringing in vital medical and other supplies and also taking exports out is facing discrimination in society, the carrier said.
“SriLankan Airlines appeals from the general public to respect its employees for their service to the country at a time of need,” the airline said in a statement.
“SriLankan Airlines as the National Airline of Sri Lanka is categorised as an essential service to render air services to the Government and the people of Sri Lanka even at a time where there is risk to health, personal safety that includes the whole or part of the population.”
In addition to taking cargo in and out, SriLankan is also carrying returning tourists back.
The airline said staff was facing discrimination in social media.
“It is extremely unfortunate that these posts have subjected the Airlines’ staff and their immediate families to discrimination, distress and embarrassment at public places such as hotels, schools and hospitals,” SriLankan Airlines said.
Sri Lanka staff have regularly train on flying under contagion situations and are regularly updated with regard to operational safety adhering to directives from the World Health Organisation, the airline said.
Procedural guidance issued by the International Air Transport Association for cabin crew, technical staff and cargo handling are also followed.
SriLankan said it was requesting social media users to check the veracity of information and refrain from posting content that may discriminate, distress or demotivate the Airlines’ staff and their family members who are currently fulfilling a much-required national mission. (Colombo/Mar24/2020)
Kithmina Hewage- Institute of Policy Studies