A Norfolk mother on board a Southwest Airlines flight on August 12th from Orlando, FL to Norfolk, VA with her husband and two children, aged 4 and 2, says a Southwest flight attendant told her to glue a mask onto her child’s face.
“Drew is a thumb sucker and her only way she biologically knows how to soothe herself is by sucking her thumb which is damn near impossible with a mask,” Ali Cleek posted to Instagram after the incident.
Cleek and her husband tried to get their child to wear her mask while two flight attendants stood over them watching. The family then goes on to say that they were given two options by the flight attendant. The first option was sarcastic “cut a hole in the mask,” or “glue it to her face.” The flight attendant, according to Cleek, mentioned she had glue available.
“I just know that regardless if it was sarcasm or not I was embarrassed and trying to follow the mandate as much as I could,” Cleek said. “My daughter is 2. We were doing everything we could to comply.”
In her post, she wrote “I don’t like being this person. Wearing a mask is the federal mandate… I get it. I respect it. But at some point, we have to have human decency. Compassion.”Cleek said she reached out to the airline and received a call from customer service with an apology.
“They said they would essentially talk to the flight crew.”
When reached for comment, Southwest reiterated the mask mandate policy and mentioned the various ways they convey the information to passengers who decide to book with them.