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Mom, Baby Kicked Off Flight Due to Their Skin Condition

American Airlines has apologized, says it's investigating
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2019 10:30 AM CST
In this June 16, 2018, file photo, American Airlines aircrafts aircrafts are seen at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago.   (AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato, File)

(Newser) – Jordan Flake was born with a genetic skin condition called ichthyosis, and so was her infant son, Jackson. But because the condition causes dry, scaly skin, crew members on the pair's recent American Airlines flight believed they had a rash—possibly a contagious one—and they were removed from the flight. Flake shared the story on Facebook and Love What Matters last week, explaining that an airline employee came on the plane at the crew's request and asked her if she had a note from her doctor verifying that it was OK to fly. She told him about the condition; he Googled it, and tried to advocate for the pair, but the crew wouldn't budge and they were escorted off the plane. "I have never been so humiliated in my life," Flake writes.

In addition, she says she had to find alternate child-care arrangements for her 4-year-old daughter back home (she and her son had been visiting her husband before he was deployed) and get a ride to the store to get the lotions she and her son need for their skin (as well as extra clothes). The Washington Post reports that after the incident went viral, American Airlines issued a statement: "We sincerely apologize to Ms. Flake and her son for the experience they had Thursday, and our team has begun an investigation into the matter." USA Today adds that, per the airline, Flake and her son's alternate flights were upgraded and their tickets were refunded. Flake, who considers it her mission to spread awareness of ichthyosis, does just that on her YouTube and Instagram accounts. (This family says they were booted from a flight because they're Jewish.)

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