Delta upgrades Black woman’s ticket after incident with other passenger

A Black woman praised Delta Airlines for saying that Black lives matter after she was allegedly harassed by a fellow passenger, thanking the flight attendant for supporting her and upgrading her ticket.

Demetria Poe, a kindergarten teacher from Minnesota, shared a now-viral Facebook post about the interaction on a flight from Minneapolis to Washington, D.C., last week to attend the Commitment March on the National Mall.

She claimed in the post that a white woman appeared to purposefully swap her American flag face mask for a Blue Lives Matter mask once she realized that she would be seated next to Poe, a Black woman. 

“That woman was trying to entice me into an argument because there was no need for her to flip that mask in my presence,” Poe told USA Today. “She didn’t do it for anyone else. It was as if she was making a statement and wanted me to know.”

Poe said she didn’t engage with her seat neighbor despite feeling “uncomfortable” and “fearful.”

“I feel like in that situation they do want to see a Black woman get angry,” Poe told the outlet.

However, the woman initiated a conversation with Poe after the plane took off by stating “I support blue lives because I support our officers.”

Poe wrote in her post that she explained to the woman that “blue lives” do not exist.

“The life of an officer exist but there is no such thing as a blue life and that statement is nothing but a rebuttal to the fact that BLM has been disregarded time after time after time,” she wrote.

The woman sitting next to her reportedly responded with a series of inflammatory remarks about the history of slavery which caused fellow passengers sitting around them to come to Poe’s defense.

“I’m marching for something that my grandparents had to march for, and I’m sitting here in the face of racism once again. I can’t escape it. Now I’m having someone who is trying to test my humanity and my history all in one breath,” she said. 

A flight attendant came over to check on Poe and offered to move the offending woman away from her.

“I felt the genuine and sincere concern the flight attendants had for me and the people around me,” Poe told the outlet. “I was shocked. I was happy, but I was still fearful. Living in Minnesota, I have seen how things get blown up. I just really wanted to get off the flight.” 

On her return flight, Poe was stunned to learn that her seat had been upgraded. She also received a gift bag filled with goodies, including a Black Lives Matter pin engraved with Delta Air Line’s logo. 

“This is a major corporation saying that Black lives matter,” Poe told USA Today. “It was very heartwarming. I cried because I look at God using me for the movement.” 

The airlines also commented on her viral post: “When we say Black lives matter, we mean it. You matter to us, Demetria.”

Morgan Durrant, spokesperson for Delta Air Lines, credited the Reagan National Airport team with a thoughtful response. 

“The actions by our people in the air and on the ground are what really sets us apart as a company bringing humanity to air travel,” Durrant told the outlet.

Tags Black Lives Matter Blue Lives Matter Delta Delta Air Lines Demetria Poe Discrimination Racism

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