THAI plan to ground “unsexy’ stewardesses slammed

BANGKOK (AFP): A top labor union representative today slammed plans by Thai Airways International (THAI) to ground older stewardesses not sexy enough to meet its hostess profile. THAI is planning to replace older stewardesses with younger, sexier models, labour union president Jaemsri Sukchotesri said, by moving over-45s to ground staff positions. “THAI is not selling sex. We are simply selling service and passenger safety,” she said, yet management appears to have put the emphasis on good looks instead. THAI reportedly intends to hire 1,000 new stewardesses before the end of this year in spite of employing 25,000 workers for its small fleet of 74 aircraft. The German airline Lufthansa, in contrast, has a fleet of 500 aircraft but employs only 19,000 workers. THAI is overstaffed and thus there is no reason for hiring new stewardesses at all, K. Jaemsri said. “We are not faced with cabin crew shortages. Although the airline plans to add more aircraft, that does not mean it needs more cabin crew.” She also rejected as untrue the company’s claims that the airline has been hit this year with an unusually high number of stewardesses taking maternity leave. The union, which represents about half of THAI’s workers, has sent a letter to the airline’s chairman asking him to scuttle the recruitment plan.

Phuket News
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