Airline vetoes senator for not wearing mask

Last week, Lora Reinbold was filmed at Juneau International Airport discussing with Alaska Airlines personnel about face mask wearing policies.

MEXICO CITY. Alaska Airlines vetoed Lora Reinbold, Alaska State Senator, for refusing to comply with mask wearing protocols.

“We have notified Senator Lora Reinbold that she is no longer allowed to travel with us because of her continued refusal to abide by staff instructions regarding the current mask use policy,” spokesman Tim Thompson told the Anchorage Daily News on Saturday. , adding that the suspension was effective immediately.

Reinbold, a Republican from Eagle River, said she had not been notified of the ban and that she hoped to travel with Alaska Airlines in the near future.

Last week, Reinbold was filmed at Juneau International Airport arguing with Alaska Airlines personnel about mask use policies. A video posted on social media reportedly shows an airline employee telling Reinbold that the mask should cover the nose and mouth.

The senator told the newspaper that she had asked for an “exemption from the use of a mask for employees stretched out at the counter.”

“I was reasonable with all the Alaska Airlines employees,” he said, adding that he was able to board the flight to Anchorage.

Reinbold has opposed mitigation measures for the covid-19 and has repeatedly objected to Alaska Airlines’ mask use policy, which was implemented before the federal government order went into effect this year.

Last year, he referred to Alaska Airlines personnel as “mask stalkers” after the crew asked him to put on a mask during a flight, according to the newspaper. After the incident, it was revealed that the senator sent crew members a cake with the phrase: “I’m sorry if I offended you.”

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Alaska Airlines has banned about 500 people.

Thompson said the length of the Reinbold ban will be determined through a review.

It was not known at the moment how Reinbold, who was in south-central Alaska this weekend, will get to Juneau, where the legislative session resumes Monday. No other airline has scheduled flights from Anchorage to Juneau, and a ferry trip would take several days.

Legislators can participate in committee meetings via video conference, but cannot vote in the House of Representatives or Senate remotely, according to current procedures.

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