A photo of a drunk Qatar Airways employee slumped on the floor has been sent around to the airline’s entire workforce by the company’s vice president.
Rossen Dimitrov, VP Customer Experience at Qatar Airways, sent a picture to members of staff of an employee who was allegedly sleeping off a drinking session, saying in his email that he was “ashamed and disturbed” by the woman’s behaviour.
“I am so ashamed and disturbed by this behaviour displayed by a tenured member of our team, an adult who has been with the company for over 9 years,” Dimitrov said in his email.
”How can we change rules when we do not behave as mature individuals? I am very disappointed.” Qatar Airways confirmed to the Daily Mail that the email was genuine and was sent to remind staff the importance of respecting Qatari customs.
“The email was sent to impress on our cabin crew that, to make their working environment as good as it can be, while still respecting the norms and values of the Qatari society in which we work, everyone has a part to play,” the spokesperson told the newspaper.
“In Doha, the consumption of alcohol is not permitted for nationals and, although drinking is permitted for foreigners, being seen to be drunk would be considered highly disrespectful – it would have negative implications for both the individual and those associated with them.”
The spokesperson explained that the woman was found in a state of incapacity by the entrance of a Qatar Airways staff building.
“The vast majority of our cabin crew would themselves be disappointed at the idea that one of their colleagues should get into this situation, since they share our pride in the reputation of our team, and they would also, as we are, be very concerned about the safety implications for someone in this position,” said the spokesperson.
In relation to Dimitrov’s comment in the email about ‘changing the rules’, the airline spokesperson said Qatar Airways has been working on a review and revision of the employment conditions for its cabin crew members, which have been universally welcomed by staff members since they were rolled them out since December 2014.
“This is something of which we are proud, but obviously we are making these changes in a culture which remains largely conservative. We think that the cabin crew community has an important part to play in showing that we have done the right thing in making these reforms, which is why we wanted to move quickly to highlight the kind of problems that could be caused by behaviour which offends local culture.”