Virgin flight attendant wins unfair dismissal case

Virgin Look Book determines what a typical guest expects of a Virgin Australia employee

The Fair Work Commission has told Virgin Australia it must give back a flight attendant job to an employee fired for not complying with the company’s guidelines on appearance.

After over a year of to-ing and fro-ing with Virgin management, then Virgin flight attendant, David Taleski was dismissed in October 2011 because his hair was longer than allowed, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

In 2010, Mr Taleski advised his management that he intended to grow his hair long, providing Virgin with medical certificates stating that he suffered from body dysmorphic disorder, a condition whereby sufferers are particularly concerned with their body image.

Mr Taleski initially claimed the decision to grow his hair was based on his religious beliefs.

Mr Taleski tried to resolve the issue by wearing a wig, however that too was claimed to contravene the dictates of the airline’s appearance bible, The Look Book.

According to the Fair Work Commission, as the Look Book did not refer to males wearing wigs, Mr Taleski’s hair piece should be deemed appropriate in accordance to the guidelines presented by Virgin and the airline was told to give Mr Taleski back his job.

Virgin is believed to be considering appealing the decision.

Click here to read this on eTravel Blackboard.

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