James Long is the aviation security officer who dragged Dr David Dao forcibly off the United Airlines almost a year ago at Chicago O’Hare Airport. Long is now suing both United Airlines and Chicago’s Department of Aviation alleging he was not trained on how to use force. Long was sacked not long after the whole incident unfolded which led to him and 3 other security officers being placed on administration leave. In the lawsuit, Long is alleging that the airline should have been aware that calling security would lead to the use of “physical force”. BBC News continues this story:
He also alleges that although he completed five months of a police recruit training programme, the department did not provide training on the “level of force continuum”, according to the Chicago Tribune newspaper.
“But for the CDA’s negligence and failure to train [Long] how to respond to an escalating situation with an Airline Passenger, [he] would not have acted in the manner he did, which resulted in his termination,” the complaint says, according to newspaper.
The lawsuit also blames CDA Commissioner Ginger Evans, whom Mr Long claims defamed him in statements to US media.
The former aviation officer is seeking damages over his sacking, which includes back pay and payment to his retirement plan.
Bill McCaffrey, a spokesman for Chicago’s department of law, told Reuters news agency he had not received the lawsuit and declined to comment further.
Dr Dao, who lost two front teeth, suffered a broken nose and a “significant” concussion, later reached a settlement with United Airlines for an undisclosed amount of money. The airline also apologised for how he was treated.
His lawyer has said that Dr Dao found the experience “more horrifying and harrowing than what he experienced when leaving Vietnam”.
I am hopeful that the lawsuit by Long will be unsuccessful because there was no need for extreme “physical force”. Dr Dao is not a big man so why the force? My theory has always been that it was all racially motivated and they didn’t like seeing an Asian man/person stand up and say NO. Which encourages activists like myself to take Dr Dao’s resilience as inspiration to continue to say NO, and say that we have had enough of all the racism and racial profiling we get subjected to.
Image via BBC News
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