Family booted from flight because distressed two-year-old daughter wouldn't wear face mask

A couple was booted from a United Airlines flight because their visibly distressed two-year-old daughter refused to wear a face mask.

Now viral video, as seen above, of their interactions with airline staff shows the pair arguing their point - which fell on deaf ears.

Uploaded to social media at the weekend, Eliz Orban said she, her husband and her toddler were set to fly from Denver into New Jersey.

But prior to take-off, they were asked to get off.

“We just got kicked off the flight because our two year old would not put on a mask, and we tried,” a teary Orban said in the video.

Eliz Orban, in a self-captured video, recounts the ordeal.
Eliz Orban, in a self-captured video, recounts the ordeal. Credit: Eliz Orban

The video itself shows her husband attempting to put a face covering on the squirming toddler.

She covers her mouth with her hands while he says: “You have to.”

After a break in the video, a crew member approaches the family and informs them they have to get off.

“Hello, sir, I’m going to have to ask you to grab your belongings and exit the aircraft,” the man says.

“You’ve gotta be kidding me,” Orban’s husband said.

The curt reply: “No, sir.”

A crew member tells the family they need to get off the plane.
A crew member tells the family they need to get off the plane. Credit: Eliz Orban

Orban’s husband tried to explain he was doing his best but the crewmember was unwavering.

“I’ve got to ask you to get off this plane,” he says, offering “non-compliance” as a reason for forcing the family off the plane.

Orban later wrote she was left in a state of “confusion, disbelief, disgust and humiliation” at the ordeal.

Video of the incident has drawn mixed reactions since being posted, with some arguing the airline response was unnecessary.

Others, however, pointed out crew members were just following policy.

Orban's husband attempts to put a face mask on his daughter.
Orban's husband attempts to put a face mask on his daughter. Credit: Eliz Orban

United Airlines’ website explicitly states that anyone aged two or older must wear a face mask on their flights.

“[We require] all customers over the age of two and employees to wear a face-covering on board,” its website reads.

It also refers to an excerpt from the US Department of Defense explaining how mask use and air filtration systems minimised the risk of transmitting COVID on a plane.

Face masks have become common-place on planes across Australia too, but are mostly offered rather than required.

 

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