Alaska Office of the Attorney General Complaint - Discrimination
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON -- My son is quadraplegic,spinal cord injury, wheelchair bound. He was born and raised in Alaska along with his 3 brothers.I went to Alaska when I was 19.My son was injured by a drunk driver in Wasilla on the flats in April 11, 1993.This year, we planned a vacation home to Alaska to visit family and attend a court date.It was a total nightmare.A horrendous experience that we will never forget. Alaska Airlines seem to have a policy that belittles those with disabilities and those of 60 yrs old, care attendants, and service dogs.Plans were made well in advance,calling Alaskair,emailing Alaskair,internet alaskair, and going to the airport personally.They were told an aisle chair would be needed, the wheelchair had gel cell batteries and did not need to be taken apart.A shower chair would be going with us. A service dog(with exam papers and written authority she was a service dog, a small chinese pug)and that we would need assistance.We were denied first class upgrades and the use of our miles to upgrade to first class and put in the bulk seating where everything had to go in the overhead bin.I was told to sit down when I needed to get the medication for my son when the plane was taxi ing in Seattle. I was denied use of the front bathroom in first class when the aisle was blocked in ecnomy and told to stand back behind the barrier to first class when trying to empty a urinal.Our medical supplies were sent to Ontario,CA and we were without them for one full night and most of the next day. Our shower chair never left Anchorage when we did, although it was booked in the oversize luggage and told it could not be delivered until 11p and asked if it would be alright to leave it in the back yard.Two stewardess on flight 177 were rude and very discriminatory. Maureen the one in first class stopped me in Seattle and would not let me bring the service dog on board, and would not read the papers saying she was a service dog.The man putting my son on the aisle chair told me to just go past her with the dog, although she had made me put everything thing down to get her the papers.She would not assist me with the carryons.In Anchorage, she was reported by their supervisor for being rude to the Anchorage crew. The Anchorage crew knew there was someone who needed an asile chair, but Maureen did not call them as she was suppose to do, instead she just stood there leaving us to sit on the airplane. Her co attendant, Alicia when asked to help me with taking the carryons off said she was busy. I looked at her and all she had in her hands was a papercup.If it had not been for Ebony,I would not have been able to empty my son's leg bag.The flight back was better due to Karen who had a husband in a wheelchair.Handicapp seating is cramped.Alaska Airlines was going to charge me $50 for bringing an extra item dog food.They took off the wheelchair in Seattle and kept saying there were 2 like it.I had to go and identify the wheelchair so it would be put back on our flight. Then they still took it apart, and the crew in Spokane could not get it connected. Alaska Airlines needs to teach their crew members including pilots about people with special needs.They are rude, discriminatory, and make those with special needs feel like they are inferior. they put more attention to those in first class. I guess they think all of first class pays the high price, but many use first class upgrade, mileage plan miles.People with disablilites need the extra room and the first class service. They are people too as well as their service dogs and care attendants.I am angry and very upset at the horrible treatment we experienced at the hands of Alaska Airlines from Spokane to Seattle to Anchorage and back to Spokane.The service dog caused no problems, did not even bark, stayed extremely close to my son.The meals were awful,the same sandwich both ways.I have written a complaint to Alaska Airlines.And have asked for compensation and that they give their people some training on how to treat people with disabilities.