22 September, 2017

SriLankan Airlines: Obese Cabin Crew To Crash Land – New Directive Issued By CAA Boss

H.M.C. Nimalsiri, the Director General & Chief Executive Officer of Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka has issued a directive termed ‘Medical Requirements and Examinations for Cabin Crew Members’ that is likely to see many currently obese Flight Attendants of SriLankan Airlines either been removed from flying duties or terminated.

One of the objectives of the issued directive to the national carrier SriLankan Airlines dated 15th of August 2017, is to ensure that each Cabin Crew remains medically fit to discharge the duties specified in the job description of the Cabin Crew Member and other internal and regulatory manuals which governs their profession.

The directive also emphasizes that the physical and mental ability of a Cabin Crew Member is essential in order to:

(a) Handle and efficiently operate the aircraft systems and emergency equipment in the cabin which are used for safety and emergency procedures e.g. cabin management systems, doors/exits, escape devices, fire extinguishers, taking also into account the type of aircraft operated e.g. narrow-bodied or wide-bodied, single/multi deck, single/multi-crew operation;

(b) Sustain continuously the aircraft environment whilst performing duties, e.g. altitude, pressure, re-circulated air, noise; and the type of operations such as short/medium/long haul; where applicable and / or when called upon to do so.

(c) Perform the required duties and responsibilities efficiently during normal and abnormal operations, and in emergency situations and psychologically demanding circumstances e.g. assistance to crew members and passengers in case of decompression; stress management, decision-making, crowd control and effective crew coordination, management of disruptive passengers and of security threats. When relevant, operating with minimum, crew should also be taken into account when assessing the medical fitness of cabin crew; and

(d) Create a good image, impression and also provide confidence to average passengers that they are in the safe hand of professional crew who are dynamic and agile enough to respond to any unlikely event of an emergency.

Cabin Crew are now required to undergo a full medical examination which will also include the measurement of weight and height by using the standard Body Mass Index Chart.

Cabin Crew will be categorized as Fit, Temporary Unfit or Permanent Unfit at the conclusion of their medical examination.

With the aviation industry expanding at phenomenal speed and air travel been a necessity rather than a luxury as in the past, it is an industry norm that airlines strive to maintain and portray their corporate and brand image through their Cabin Crew.

However from a Cabin Crew Member’s perspective there are many challenges that they face doing this job over the years. Irregular working hours and sleep patterns, fatigue, disturbance of the body’s circadian rhythm and irregular timings of food intake have been contributing factors over the years for weight gain.

A leading Middle Eastern carrier has a separate unit within their Cabin Crew Training Center to help their flyers in the area of weight management. Cabin Crew Members have their height and weight measured annually and those found to be overweight are provided all the help needed. Several Cabin Crew of this airline have benefited from this programme over the years, as they are brought in, educated, and provided individual attention and care needed to arrest this type of issue.

However a Cabin Crew Member from SriLankan Airlines speaking to Colombo Telegraph on condition of anonymity said “It is unfair to introduce policies such as this overnight and have them implemented, where it is definitely is going to affect many of us. The management should first educate the entire Cabin Crew cadre on weight loss management and help us in this area over a period of time. Last year the company initiated a similar exercise, but that was clearly to get rid of some contracted Cabin Crew whose contracts they did not want to renew. This is definitely a ploy used by the airline to clinically get rid of certain Cabin Crew. We know how the current Director General / CEO of CAA Nimalsiri cows down to the management of SriLankan Airlines. Many senior aviation professionals within the industry have complained that the Civil Aviation Authority has had the reputation of being a toothless tiger when dealing with the national carrier. With even the current Director General / CEO Nimalsiri being severely exposed in the media for many alleged fraudulent and corrupt deals, it won’t be surprising if this directive was drafted by SriLankan Airlines itself and passed on to the Director General CAA who in turn sent it back to the airline, as if he had introduced this directive.”

Colombo Telegraph published an article titled “SriLankan Airlines To Ground Overweight Cabin Crew” on the 2nd June 2016. Then SriLankan Airlines instructed its Cabin Crew to visit the company Medical Officer in order to have their BMI measured. However at that time the CAA of Sri Lanka was not involved in that process.

Commenting on this topic Gender justice activist Dr Chamindra Weerawardhana said: “Given the record of Sri Lankan airlines in dealing with cabin crew, these new rules are to be taken with a fine pinch of salt. The emphasis is on, I quote a ‘good image’, a ‘brand image’ etc. and then it drifts to weight control. These rules have an ‘eliminatory’ aspect to them, and in this 21st century that is deeply problematic. We need to seriously ask Mr Nimalsiri as to when he launched a comprehensive support programme for ALL cabin staff on the good maintenance of their health. Regulations of this nature, for them to be justifiable and simply workable, need to be complemented by a strongly vetted and comprehensive programme that facilitates cabin crew to look after their overall health. In the absence of anything like that, Mr Nimalsiri thinks he can come up with a set of rules and regulations, and use it to throw people under the bus, and not only from a gender justice perspective, but simply from a perspective of basic human dignity, that is despicable. The objective seems to be to keep all cabin crew lean and thin – as it transpires from the directive that Mr Nimalsiri equates good brand image with lean bodies – and I am convinced women will be at the worst receiving end of this. In a world where countries specialised in lines of work such as modelling ban extreme thinness (see here), Sri Lankan airlines seem to be run by men with an archaic, conservative and very-un-21st century-like worldview.”

Meanwhile whilst DG / CEO of CAA Nimalasiri has laid focus on the weight gain of Cabin Crew, leading French fashion companies such as Kering and LVMH enforced a new ruling a few days ago, where they will stop hiring excessively thin models worldwide. This is as severe criticism was leveled in the fashion industry that the profession of modeling encouraged eating disorders. France went on to ban ultra-thin models under a 2015 law though it only stipulated models needed a doctor’s note attesting to their health based on age and their BMI.

Miffed by this new directive, the Flight Attendants Union sent out a message to its membership which read “Dear Comrades our fundamental rights as citizens of Sri Lanka have been violated in the above documents; as such your union will be making a concerted effort to have this ridiculous document removed legally. Be assured we will not allow our members to be bullied or have to face loss of employment. Be Strong, Stay Strong; justice will prevail.!!!” (By Jacqueline Senanayake)

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Latest comments

  • 28
    0

    Sri Lankan doctors will write a certificate if the price is right. They would even form a welcoming reception if things were pre arranged. See the two VIPs that landed in the prison ward only the day before yesterday thanks to a signature from the senior prison doctor and quack!

    • 11
      4

      Sri lanlan air lines is a business. Those indidivudlas should be removed taking others as the caysed.

    • 10
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      H.M.C. Nimalsiri, the Director General & Chief Executive Officer of Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka ,

      Thanks. Can you extend this requirement to the Ministers and the Sri Lankan Parliament as well? Anybody over BMI 25, i.e. overweight, is disqualified, until their BMI drops below 25. They are obese, because they are stealing from We the People.

      Good move. To be a cabin crew or pilot is a privilege, not a right. To keep the privilege, they need to be physically and mentally fit with a certain minimum IQ, irrespective of their educational qualifications. certainly the crew need to be told this is part of the qualifications needed for job performative.

      In addition, they must be trained in human relations so that they will treat all passengers with respect.

      BMI and Obesity in the World

      WHO BMI Cut Off Points:

      Category BMI range – kg/m2
      Very severely underweight less than 15
      Severely underweight from 15.0 to 16.0
      Underweight from 16.0 to 18.5
      Normal (healthy weight) from 18.5 to 25
      Overweight from 25 to 30
      Obese Class I (Moderately obese) from 30 to 35
      Obese Class II (Severely obese) from 35 to 40
      Obese Class III (Very severely obese)
      Obesity Facts & Figures: World Health Organisation Fact sheet N°311

      Key facts

      Worldwide obesity has nearly doubled since 1980.
      In 2008, more than 1.4 billion adults, 20 and older, were overweight. Of these over 200 million men and nearly 300 million women were obese.
      35% of adults aged 20 and over were overweight in 2008, and 11% were obese.
      65% of the world’s population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight.
      Overweight and obesity are the fifth leading risk for global deaths. At least 2.8 million adults die each year as a result of being overweight or obese.
      44% of the diabetes burden, 23% of the ischaemic heart disease burden and between 7% and 41% of certain cancer burdens are attributable to overweight and obesity.
      More than 40 million children under the age of five were overweight in 2011.
      Obesity is preventable.

      29 Most Obese Countries In The World

      http://www.worldatlas.com/articles/29-most-obese-countries-in-the-world.html

    • 7
      0

      Most airlines have this rule on international flights and not much on domestic flights.

      What is the issue? When you are in a frontline role in travel, hospitality and airline industries you need to look good and also know your work well.

      Fully supportive of the decision.

      Obese staff can be used as ground staff and hence no loss in jobs.

      But may not earn the Rs 500,000 per month with allowances paid to cabin Crew stewardesses when doing ground work.

      • 0
        0

        “Most airlines have this rule on international flights “

        Where ?????? Can you point to a few airlines official rules governing weight of crew members ?

        Or are you just spouting BS ?

        • 0
          0

          Check this out, Maalumiris :
          Air India Likely to Ground 125 Overweight Cabin Crew Members
          http://www.ndtv.com › All India

          Air India grounds 125 crew members for being too fat after failing to …
          http://www.mirror.co.uk › News › World news › Air India

    • 5
      0

      Colombo Telegraph can you please cover this serious move made by the government to grab private land!!?
      “Uncultivated private land to be used for cultivation – President” according to adaderana.lk…

      is this going to be the excuse to grab our property!??

      • 2
        0

        “is this going to be the excuse to grab our property!??”

        Yes.

        Will the Govt give funds to cultivate?

      • 0
        1

        Agreed – this is an important Yahapalanaya Exercise from the brilliant minds of our PM and President

  • 12
    2

    Doing the job properly is the main thing.
    Being medically fit is important; but is a slight excess weight a criterion to disqualify a member of an air crew.
    Some years ago, I came across a good looking but rude member of the air crew; and I have reported to the company. The treatment of housemaids by some members of the cabin crew can be better.
    As for ‘brand image’ it is a service and not showbiz.
    I think that we are victims of male chauvinist sexism.

  • 8
    1

    So RIP Van Wynkle has woken up friend m his long slumber and found them overweight? Ir won’t be a surprise to find this doc drafted by the many rogues in management.
    It’s good to see them slim as we all know that some are bloody fat but how about the same emphasis on floor for safety and make sure that extra heavy cabin bags of passengers too are removed from the aircraft along with this ?
    The weight saving would help the tottering airlines bottomline profits !

  • 7
    0

    This same guy Nimalasiri DGCA favours Emirates and Qatar airways to the National Carrier. He is definitely doing injustice to the only segment in the National Carrier who has worked to keep the flag flying while it is blead to death by the incompetent Board of directors CEO and the Senior Management. The Minister concerned is totally blind to reality as well. Sad to say Yahapalanaya does not look at human rights in its dealings and will fail

  • 9
    1

    We at air lanka never had this problem. We had to maintain body weight. Thanks to Primal De Silva now I am told is a General Manager! who created the uncontrollable union the airline could not impliment any rules. I am told that most of those who are overweight are his cronies. Hats off to the management of Sri Lankan airlines for putting the crew in its place if not close down this airline that’s bleeding the country.

  • 8
    0

    H.M.C. Nimalsiri, the Director General & Chief Executive Officer of Civil Aviation Authority of Sri Lanka has just woken up from deep deep deep sleep. He wants to impress us and goes for the cabin crew.

    Well well well HMC Nimalsiri. The safety of the passengers 101 is in the hands of the flying crew. Why not address the mental fitness, alcohol and drug addiction if any and similar malaise of the pilots, navigators etc.
    Equally important is the moral turpitude of the management.
    Pilot errors and/or poor maintenance cause crashes. The change in weight of cabin crews never!
    Flight Attendants Union sent out a message to its membership which read “Dear COMRADES…………………..”. Capitalisation mine.
    That is Union101.

  • 3
    1

    This is like re-arranging deck chairs on a sinking Titanic. SriLankan is nowhere near a competitive hard or soft product in Business Class for short or long haul (though there may have been hope before their new A350 orders were canceled), and relies on Economy Class hauls to eke out a margin. The issue is with mismanagement and inefficiency of the airline as outlined in prior articles on CT, not with the weight issues or lack thereof of the crew. “Safety” is a bogus justification for imposing these rules on crew. The crew ought to lawyer up and ask where is the evidence that weight has anything to do with safe operation of aircraft. These are no doubt rules brought on by a sexist, male-dominated administration.

  • 4
    0

    I think Sri lankan air line is better off in selling to sri lankan and foreign consortium. Then no nepotism and incompetants brain dead running the airline and no certaily any political influence. nTis is notleadership MY3, Ranil or the pandas they select for runing it.

  • 5
    1

    Where is Rtd. Shamal Perethaya, who drools over the air hostesses? A real lowlife scumbag.

  • 2
    5

    This excuse, it is the irregular working hours is the problem is a stupid excuse. How about other world air lines working the same way. Itis the Politician’s heachmen talking. I heard almost everybody is from kollupitiya or from one area. I heard most are muslims and they eat and prey five times a day.

    • 4
      0

      Jimbo dummy,
      “they eat and prey five times a day.”
      What do they prey on? Do they eat careless passengers?

    • 1
      1

      Jimsofty

      ” I heard most are muslims and they eat and prey five times a day.”

      Are they Saudis? Do they want to imitate the Wahhabi-Salafi decadent traditions of the Satan? They are forced to pray 5 times a day by the religious police, and then they they eat all day. The Saudis are obese, with close to 34% of the population being obese, and the lowest GMAT scores in the world for their graduates, average around 330.

      What they should have is an exercise police and a food police.

      http://www.worldatlas.com/articles/29-most-obese-countries-in-the-world.html

  • 2
    5

    I heard muslims are not good in hospitality. This particular group is from walasmulla and godakawela and they are not paerticularly good muslims. they do not even invites outsioders to their homes. People can check and see. It is rural sinhala buddhists who are good in hospitality.

    • 1
      1

      Jimsofty

      “I heard muslims are not good in hospitality. This particular group is from walasmulla and godakawela and they are not paerticularly good muslims. they do not even invites outsioders to their homes. “

      They must be some clones of Wahhabi-Salafies who follow the Devil, Satan, as per Hadith of Najd. They hate everybody, other than Wahhabi-Salafies and their clones. They were all cultivated and brainwashed by Wahhabi-Salafi funds, and they all are expected to end up with Satan in Hell. T%hey are not Muslims, but Iblisis, Satanis, Wahhabies es and Salafies, who hate humans.

      They dislike Sufis, Shia, Ahmediaas, Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Jews, Atheists etc., a characteristic of those who follow the Satan. Their God is Satan, who hates humans and other moving animals.

      References:

      Al Azhar Scholar: ‘Wahhabism/Salafism is a Satanic Faith, the Horns of Satan’

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZOA3Ho9AUk

  • 8
    2

    Sri Lankan Airline can afford obese cabin crew as there are no passengers…the air line can afford to remove the seats and widen the aisle for the obese crews to glide along the aisle.

  • 4
    2

    Sri Lanka used to court it’s cricketing success to seduce the world …now that too is gone. Bangkok style red light district in Colombo port city and Hambantota and along the coastal line is being promoted to shore up sex and gambling tourism …the decision to deploy slim sexy Sinhala chicks to help lure sex tourism form Hindians and Chinese. The sex tourist from the west prefer the oriental countries over the double standard Mahavamsa country. One common thread is they are all Buddhists countries…wonder why

    • 2
      1

      Rajash,

      SL has a huge potential to attract tourists looking for Sex. Not just the South and Colombo red light districts, even Anuradhapura, Jaffna, Trinco and Batti have all the potential to become lucrative sex trade hot spots.

      I know for a fact that even in the 80s Jaffna provided some of the best girls in the business. There were two famous Girls schools in Jaffna. Chundukuli and another one. You just had to name the school’s name and you would get a girl from that school.

      Once they are with you, you just had to wash them thoroughly with VIM or lifeboy and they are good to go. Imagine the foreign currency this could generate.

      • 1
        0

        Rtd. Lt. Reginald Shamal Perera – for the Sinhala soldiers under your command I understand even dead LTTE female fighters are good to go!

      • 1
        0

        Rtd. Lt. Reginald Shamal Perera -by the way the soap is Lifebuoy and not Lifeboy. >>>>you display your confused sexual pervert mind>>>boys, dead women young or old>>>>anything with a hole>is good to go for you!!!!

        • 1
          0

          Rajash,

          So, sex tourism happening in the South of the Island is good for you while you are offended when I point out what is happening in the North.

          You probably have never been to the North, but if you do ask for a Chundukuli and it will be delivered to your door step. Make sure to wash it thoroughly with cold soapy water and apply some Lime down there. Half a Lime would do.

          • 1
            0

            so you are not denying having sex with dead LTTE carers>>>>. by the way the Chundukuli girls I know are clean and top notch. >>>>>no need to “”wash “it” thoroughly””.>>>>>Perhaps you were hood winked after a few toddy by some cheap imports from Hambantota?

  • 3
    1

    Probably this is going fix the name problem of Sri Lankan Air Lines and fix the problem of cockpit crew frequently over doping and sleeping while the non stopping alarm radios sing the music in the lonely western hotels and missing the flights.

    Motivation!

  • 3
    0

    If they look like that cartoon above, it will be sweet.

  • 2
    1

    Oh yes, this was the biggest problem of this airline and dear friends from now on we are going to have the best airline in the world spick and span, corrupt free.

  • 1
    0

    not a problem
    they could easily be accomodated in the sri lanka cricket team

  • 5
    0

    Is this an equal opportunity employer or a sex show ?

    Sri Lankans think a little bit of fat is sexy. A pot belly a sign of maturity.

    Why not restrict our parliament to real men, manly, regular types( same for women) . It seems now we have so many non-main line men in parliament.

    • 1
      0

      Parliament had better ones. You don’t even have to worry about weight. you see…..Malini, Geetha, Rosy…. But all are spent fireworks. That is why the parliament is losing profit.

      I heard when DEW from COPE investigated, he found out the problem of overweight as the reason for old Old Beauty Queen’s brother losing $2 billions. (Don’t ask me what a communist like DEW understand about loss/Profit)

      I think New King’s Thirukkai Waal is idling without use. Otherwise all government corp will make solid profit year after year.

  • 0
    0

    can we now put in a little more on the luggage please?

    I wonder whether the arabs will boycott the airline.They like plump women with lot of flesh on them.Their contention is that no point having sex with a skeleton.

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