Employees of American Airlines refused to allow a 15-year-old unaccompanied minor to purchase food during a layover. According to Business Insider, the boy was flying home to Albany, New York after visiting his sister in Jacksonville, Florida.
During a layover at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, the teen requested to go get something to eat multiple times. However, he was denied.
What we know:
Though the layover was supposed to be an hour long, his connecting flight was delayed, extending his layover closer to two hours.
The teenager’s sister, Jennifer Roback, told Insider that her brother was denied going just a few feet away to a store he wished to purchase something to eat from. Instead, he was told he had to stay with a group of other unaccompanied minors for the entirety of the layover.
A hungry kid:
“He didn’t have breakfast so he hadn’t eaten all day and was just left hungry,” said Roback. “I was upset about it because my brother’s never flown alone before so it was a big trip for him. It bothers me that his way back wasn’t great and I was angry for him.”
Upon picking up the boy from the airport, his stepmother headed to the airline’s counter seeking answers. There, American Airlines employees apologized, attributing the situation to staff shortages.
Staff shortages to blame?
“I know that there have been a lot of staff shortages because of the pandemic, but I feel like companies are now just trying to use that as an excuse. It’s one thing if someone closes a register at a grocery store, but it’s another thing when you deny children food,” said Roback.