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El Al CEO Institutes Zero-Tolerance for Haredi Intolerance

Although much of the reaction is “What took so long?” and “Wasn’t it obvious that the solution is to remove those who are not happy with their seats?” it took the advent of social media and the social conscience of an Israeli hi-tech company to – hopefully – end the spate of flight delays caused by Haredi men refusing to sit next to women. As we reported earlier in the week, a New York — Tel Aviv El Al flight was more than an hour late as the latest drama played out aboard the plane – albeit only with male combatants – ending only when in the interest of getting the plane on its way, two women volunteered to move. Although in doing so the airline was willfully violating Israeli law, it reportedly offered no perks or “thank-yous” such as an upgrade for their heroic act. Such a gesture would apparently have caused too great an impact on the struggling airlines bottom line. In fact, the obvious solution of removing inflexible and uncooperative passengers from the aircraft before it loses its Air Traffic Control position resulted only from economic pressure when a hi-tech company announced it would not allow its employees to fly El Al because it discriminates against women. Company CEO says it’s now a new day and if passengers are unwilling to take their seat, the airline is unwilling to allow them to remain aboard the plane and will be immediately removed.