Tamika Mallory is considering filing a lawsuit, or joining a pending complaint, after American Airlines reportedly kicked her off a flight in a seat assignment dispute Sunday, the New York Daily News reported.
Mallory may become a co-plaintiff in a lawsuit filed by the Rev. William Barber II, president of the NAACP’s North Carolina branch, who was removed from an American Airlines flight last year after arguing with an allegedly racist passenger. The civil rights activist and Women’s March On Washington co-chair has yet to hear from American Airlines after 72 hours since the alleged discrimination incident.
“Someone should be calling me to tell me that what happened to me is wrong,” Mallory stated Tuesday. “I have no choice but to believe that they stand by his actions.”
A brief statement was released by an airline spokesperson to the New York Daily News regarding the incident, which caused Mallory distress.
“Had to rebook last minute flights on a different airline after being discriminated against on @AmericanAir,” Mallory tweeted Wednesday morning. “Paid double the price + it appears 1 of the reasons I haven’t heard from senior management at @AmericanAir is becuz they have decided to lie.”
Mallory, who missed the wedding of Rev. Al Sharpton’s daughter because of the matter, alleged the airline attempted to defend itself in a news article, which was undiscovered at press time. She plans to share the article link and a detailed account of Sunday’s incident, according to her tweets.
On Tuesday, Mallory held a press conference for a call to action regarding the matter, making her first public appearance since being removed from her flight with her attorney, Royce Russell.
“As a spiritual person, I understand that this happened to me because other people need to have their voices heard,” Mallory said, Revolt TV reported. “… I want to ensure that there are policies instituted in American Airlines that ensure that what happened to me will not happen to another person. And if it does, that there will be immediate action taken to reprimand to whoever disrespects and discriminates against a person.”
Mallory isn’t the only one to experience problems with American Airlines as of late. Shortly after reports of her encounter began circulating, Briana Williams, a Black Boston mom, reached out to New York Daily News stating that she, too, had been booted from a recent American Airlines flight—along with her four-month-old daughter.
Williams was heading to Brooklyn from Atlanta to visit family on August 21 when an argument ensued about retrieving her baby stroller. As a result, she and her baby girl were forced to sleep in the airport overnight while waiting for the first flight scheduled to leave the next morning.
“This type of unregulated discretion is a segue into discriminatory policy,” she told New York Daily News. “The pilot put me in a potentially dangerous situation with law enforcement as a young, Black woman, saying that I was a ‘threat.’ This type of rhetoric paralyzes the African-American community, and I want to ensure that policies are put in place that regulate the pilot’s discretionary abilities.”
Williams has since received 25,000 flying miles (a roundtrip flight) due to the flight crew’s “deviating” behavior according to a customer service representative. Mallory, on the other hand, still awaits as little as an apology.
Read Mallory’s tweets below.