Cathay Pacific Dismisses Crew Members Accused of Discriminating Against Non-English Speakers! (23.5.2023)

Blogger’s Note: My family has flown Cathay-Pacific to and from Hong Kong in the past and it is true that the female Flight Attendant Staff are renowned for being multi-lingual. To the average Westerner – this means they can speak ‘English’ – regardless of whatever other Chinese language (or Chinese dialect) they can also speak (this interpretation artificially places the ‘foreign’ English language above and beyond the ‘ethnic’ languages these women were born into and routinely speak with their families). This is an uncomfortable arrangement that evolved exclusively out of Western imperialism – a forced institution which saw predominantly Western travellers (but not ‘Asians’) routinely fly in and out of the former European colonies of Hong Kong and Macau (as well as other parts of Western-dominated Asia). Most of the Flight Attendants I interacted with were young and older women from Hong Kong, the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia – and although NOT all were ethnic Chinese – all were ‘Asian’ and all had to be able to speak ‘English’ and ‘Cantonese’ (the dialect of the Chinese language spoken throughout Guangdong province, Hong Kong and various other areas of Asia outside of geographical China) – regardless of their own ethnic language. What the Cathay-Pacific Staff did NOT have to do was speak fluent ‘Putonghua’ (what the West refers to as ‘Mandarin’) the language spoken throughout Mainland China – as the business model at that time was toward the ‘West’ – and NOT toward ‘China’! Times have changed – and given that China is now an economic powerhouse – it is true that within the modern business climate just as many ethnic Chinese people from Mainland China (and elsewhere) use the Airline as Westerners – and that this change in business demographic toward the Chinese Mainland should be recognised by the British ‘Swire‘ (family which still maintains a controlling shareholder stake in the business) – and reflected in the training of its Staff! The Cathay-Pacific Staff members who ‘discriminated’ against ‘Putonghua’ speakers on the flight concerned – hsve been ‘sacked’ – and I suspect this process was carried-out in a language they could ALL fully understand! ACW (23.5.2023)

2023-05-24 Editor:Zhao Li

(ECNS) — Cathay Pacific Airways announced the dismissal of three flight attendants and apologized to the public after a passenger accused them of discriminating against non-English speakers, which draw overwhelming criticism from Chinese social media.

Recently, a netizen posted on a social media platform, claiming that there was discrimination against “non-English-speaking passengers” by the cabin crew on Cathay Pacific Airways flight CX987 from Chengdu to Hong Kong. The netizen mentioned overhearing the cabin crew complaining and discriminating against passengers in English and Cantonese, and uploaded an audio recording.

Regarding the incident, Cathay Pacific Airways apologized twice on Monday evening and Tuesday afternoon, and stated that an internal investigation has been launched immediately.

Airline CEO Ronald Lam expressed his apologies on Tuesday evening to the passenger and society. He reiterated his company’s “zero tolerance” of any serious breach of its policies and code of conduct.

Ronald Lam stated that in order to prevent similar incidents, he will personally lead a cross-departmental working group to conduct a comprehensive review, reexamine Cathay Pacific Airways’ service processes, personnel training, and related systems, and further enhance the service quality of Cathay Pacific Airways.

He stressed the most important aspect is to ensure that all Cathay Pacific employees must respect passengers from different backgrounds and cultures and provide professional and consistent service in all service areas.