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Assembly Panel to Hold Hearing on Airline Passengers’ Rights

Forcible Removal of Passenger from Recent United Flight Prompts Legislative Focus on Air Travel

Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and Assemblyman Paul D. Moriarty announced Friday that the Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee will hold a hearing to address the rights of airline passengers.

The forcible removal of a United Airlines passenger from a plane in Chicago, Illinois earlier this month prompted the lawmakers’ call for an effort to ensure travelers are respected and airlines are held accountable.

“The majority of flights leaving from Newark Liberty International Airport are United Airlines flights. This incident is cause for concern among many New Jersey residents who have to choose between flying United and not flying at all,” said Prieto (D-Bergen/Hudson). “Everyone who boards a plane in New Jersey deserves to know that they will be respected. A hearing will allow the legislature to ask questions and then take any necessary action to ensure that passengers are safe and treated with dignity.”

“The recent horrific incident on United is indicative of what seems to be a larger systemic problem within the airline industry,” said Moriarty (D-Camden/Gloucester), chair of the Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee. “Expecting a traveler who paid for a seat on the plane to forfeit his or her reservation shows an utter disregard for the rights of consumers. New Jersey can have no tolerance for such business practices.”