Unfriendly Skies: New global study of in-flight assaults announced

Travel industry experts, and PWN Global partner, Maiden Voyage has launched a new study into the rising reports of sexual assaults and violence against female air passengers and crew.  Elevating the Female Traveller will be the most in-depth, independent, piece of research ever conducted around this issue as well as looking at what the aviation sector as a whole can do to improve the experience of flying.

A 2017 survey of 2,000 flight attendants found that one in five had dealt with complaints of sexual assault from passengers. Yet law enforcement was contacted in fewer than half those cases.

In April this year, the FBI launched their Air Aware campaign in response to the increase in incidents being reported.

Carolyn Pearson, Founder of Maiden Voyage said “The timing is absolutely right for us to launch this research now. More women are travelling to culturally different regions where often onboard logistics don’t cater for the mix of cultures in their cabins, the number of sexual assaults on board appears to be increasing and airlines are not responding to either appropriately.   We’ll take the findings to lobby for the right legal responses and undoubtedly extend our services and support to both business travellers and suppliers to provide a better and safer service for all."

Elevating the Female Traveller will feature the results of a confidential survey undertaken amongst passengers and air crew, together with the perspectives of travel managers, airlines and other key stakeholders. It will address topics including:- 

  • What female business travellers want from airports, airlines and support services
  • The risks facing female business travellers, from theft to sexual harassment and assault.
  • Different cultural attitudes towards female business travellers.
  • Which airlines/airports are the safest, and why
  • Legal obligations of travel providers and variations in penalties between countries
  • How female business travellers can help to minimise the risk
  • Role of the travel management company and travel risk management providers
  • Innovation in product & services
  • Cabin crew harassment and safety
  • Gaps in air crew preparation and training

 We encourage all of the PWN community to participate in the confidential survey here. 

Editor’s information
Launched in 2008, Maiden Voyage helps organisations to safeguard their female and LGBTQ travellers by fulfilling their duty of care obligations through travel safety training, eLearning, traveller wellbeing webinars and social platforms to connect business travellers.  Maiden Voyage set the standard for female-friendly hotels and partners with some of the biggest names in travel and travel risk including Capita Travel and Events, International SOS and GlobalStar.   Prior to launching Maiden Voyage, founder Carolyn Pearson held senior roles with both easyJet and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. 

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