An 81 year old woman was forced to switch her seat on an El Al Airlines flight and is now suing in a discrimination lawsuit.
The woman, Renee Rabinowitz was sitting in business class on a flight from Newark (EWR) to Tel Aviv (TLV) back in December when the situation took place.
An Ultra-Orthodox man sitting in the window seat next to her complained about sitting next to a woman. One of the flight attendants offered Rabinowitz a different seat.
According to Gothamist, she told the NY Times that “she felt minimized…“For me this is not personal. It is intellectual, ideological and legal. I think to myself, here I am, an older woman, educated, I’ve been around the world, and some guy can decide that I shouldn’t sit next to him. Why?”
I have to agree here. If the man had a problem with who sat next to him then his seat should’ve been changed.
A liberal advocacy group, the Israel Religious Action Center says that El Al has put up with the demands of Ultra- Orthodox men and has taken Rabinowitz’s case. They feel there is a real case here since when Rabinowitz asked if she was being moved due to the man seated next to her, the flight attendant said yes.
This kind of behavior has taken place for some time. In 2014 a bunch of flights from JFK to Tel Aviv were delayed when Ultra- Orthodox men refused to sit next to women.
I hope that Rabinowitz wins the case and this kind of treatment stops. I don’t see why one person’s religious beliefs should impact another passenger’s rights.
Find out more from Gothamist here.