Because the phrase “Ladies and Gentlemen” is not perceived as inclusive by some, Alaska Airlines has advised its flight attendants to stop using it when making onboard announcements. The airline sent a reminder to its flight attendants that says:
“As Flight Attendants, we are used to certain routines and habitual behaviors when it comes to how we do our job. The processes of performing the safety demo, setting up our galleys and carts for service, and many others are second nature to us, and we don’t give them a second thought. One of those deeply ingrained habits for many is starting our cabin announcements with the phrase ‘ladies and gentlemen’.”
The advisory memo continues: “What you may not know, however, is that ‘ladies and gentlemen’ is no longer part of our announcement scripts. Section 10 of the Flight Attendant Manual (FAM) and the announcement section of Block2Block no longer include any gender-specific references. Though it may take some effort to drop the habit of using the phrase, doing so is important in creating an inclusive environment for all our fellow Flight Attendants, other co-workers, and passengers.”
“Our MEC adopted a resolution on gender equality in December, 2020. The resolution affirms the MEC’s support of the right to recognition, acceptance, and inclusion of people of all gender identities and expressions both in and out of the workplace. As not everyone identifies as male or female, preceding cabin announcements with the term ‘ladies and gentlemen’ does not support a welcoming atmosphere for everyone. Let’s work together to create an inclusive environment by using language that is welcoming to all!”
Alaska Airlines isn’t alone; Delta, Japan Airlines, Brussels Airlines, and Lufthansa are some of the other carriers that have dropped the terminology that refers to well-behaved passengers.
The phrases that they are using may be “everyone” or “passengers,” or perhaps just a term like “Good morning.”
With all the air rage these days, perhaps the dropping of the phrase is an accurate representation of the seemingly fewer ladies and gentlemen flying than in years past, when people generally behaved better onboard.