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24 Mar 2023


Spain: Catalan labour inspectorate fines Vueling over gender discrimination for requiring female cabin crew to wear make-up and high heels

"Vueling fined $32K after female cabin crew staff told to wear high heels", 24. March 2023

Low-cost carrier Vueling has been fined by Catalonian labor inspectors in Spain after the airline was criticised over its treatment of female cabin crew members.

According to local reports, female cabin crew members were instructed by the Spanish airline to wear high heels and makeup while on duty.

The case was brought to the attention of the Catalan government’s labor and workers department by the workers union STAVLA, which was representing the cabin crew members.

Spanish publication, El Periódico reported that female flight attendants were not allowed to wear “artificial-length or looking” eyelash extensions and if lipstick was worn, it must be a “low-key” shade.

Female members of staff were reportedly instructed to apply a foundation that matches their skin tone and only permitted to use black mascara.

The heels on female flight attendants’ shoes were also required to measure between two and three inches.

In contrast, male crew members were simply told to maintain a “clean and neat appearance” and were not instructed by the airline on choice of footwear.

The airline was fined $33,000 and told it could still maintain a business image in a “less burdensome and more balanced way, without affecting the fundamental rights” of workers.

Vueling has the right to appeal the Catalan government’s decision.

According to Newsweek, Vueling is currently looking at its options in the wake of the fine and the airline has been reviewing its style guide.

Vueling forms part of the International Airlines Group (IAG) along with British Airways, Aer Lingus and Iberia.

AeroTime has contacted Vueling and STAVLA for comment.