Sydney fireman John McGirr accuses Virgin of discrimination
The Daily Telegraph, The Herald Sun, by Phil Jacob, August
VIRGIN Airlines has been accused of treating men like
paedophiles, after it made a man swap seats because he was seated next
to two minors.
Sydney fireman John McGirr, who wrote an online blog post titled "My
Virgin experience as a Paedophile", was on board a flight from Brisbane when
he was seated next to two males he estimates were between 8 and 10 years
Just before take-off Mr McGirr was approached by a flight attendant, who
asked him to move seats because the company's policy states that men cannot
sit next to unaccompanied minors.
"She said it was the policy and I said, 'Well, that's pretty sexist and
discriminatory. You can't just say because I'm a man I can't sit there,' and
she just apologised and said that was the policy," Mr McGirr wrote in a blog
"By this stage everyone around me had started looking."
A female passenger was then asked to take Mr McGirr's seat.
"After that I got really embarrassed because she didn't even explain. I just
got up and shook my head a little, trying to get some dignity out of the
situation," he said.
Virgin defended its policy, yesterday saying Mr McGirr's reaction was
typical of the industry.
"In our experience, most guests thoroughly understand that the welfare of
the child is our priority," a Virgin spokeswoman told the media.
"Our intention is certainly not to discriminate in any way,'' the airline said in
a statement, before stating that it would review its policy.
The decision by Virgin inspired Mr McGirr to pen what appears to be a
satirical letter to Virgin, suggesting some amendments to their seating
Amendment 1# Men should only be allowed to sit next to other
Because after all the majority of individuals who commit rape are men. Shouldn’t we then presume that we are all rapists and can't be trusted to
sit next to any female. Actually that discounts male to male rape. Sorry.
Amendment 2# No male should sit next to anyone.
An empty seat will be allocated next to every male at all times to ensure
the safety of women and children.