Southwest Airlines boots family after toddler with autism refuses to wear mask

A Texas mom says Southwest Airlines kicked her off a flight from Midland to Houston after her 3-year-old autistic son refused to wear a mask.

“He’s Three and has autism and sensory processing points, so he wouldn’t protect the mask on,” Alyssa Sadler, of Houston, suggested ABC affiliate KTRK.

“They’re trying to talk about to him, inform him, ‘You have gotten to wear it. It’s not an chance,’ and I’m trying to make clear to them, you perceive, he doesn’t understand what you’re saying.”

The mom acknowledged her son “doesn’t like points touching his face.”

“He was screaming. He was throwing a match. He was screaming no, no, no,” she suggested NBC Houston.

After the child refused to mask up, the captain returned the airplane to its gate and booted the lady, her son and her 1-year-old daughter.

Sadler suggested KTRK she wears a mask “all over the place I’m going,” nonetheless acknowledged there have to be exemptions.

“You’ve acquired to have some sort of exemption, notably for people with disabilities, [and] youngsters with disabilities,” she suggested the outlet.

A Southwest Airlines airplane
A Southwest Airlines airplaneAP

“I suggest, no 3-year-old, who’s autistic and has sensory processing dysfunction, goes to put one thing on their face.”

Southwest began requiring face coverings for all passengers at all times in late July. The airline doesn’t allow for health-related exceptions, nonetheless children beneath 2 would possibly fly sans mask.

An airline spokesperson suggested Fox Information the mask insurance coverage insurance policies are communicated to flyers “at a variety of touchpoints all by the journey.”

“If a purchaser is unable to wear a face masking for any objective, Southwest regrets that we’re unable to transport the particular person,” the spokesperson acknowledged in an announcement.

“In these circumstances, we’ll concern a full refund and hope to welcome the consumer on board ultimately, if public nicely being guidance regarding face coverings changes.”

Sadler suggested NBC Houston a family member would drive her family from Midland to Houston — 8½ hours one-way — on Thursday.



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