Ryanair faces boycott threats for ignoring passenger’s racist tirade caught on video

Irish airline Rayanair is facing boycott threats and widespread backlash for ignoring a white passenger's racist tirade caught in a viral video last week, according to The New York Times

In the video, a white man aggressively insults the black woman sitting beside him on a Rayanair airplane, calling her an "ugly black bastard." When she speaks to him in English with a Jamaican accent, he says, "Don't talk to me in a f------ foreign language, you stupid, ugly cow.” 


A flight attendant then asks the elderly woman to move. The man apparently went unpunished during the flight.

The incident took place while the flight was boarding from Barcelona, Spain. It landed in London Stansted Airport. A Ryanair spokeswoman told the Times that the airline reported the incident to the police in Essex County.

“Essex Police takes prejudice-based crime seriously and we want all incidents to be reported,” the Essex police said in a statement to the Times. “We are working closely with Ryanair and the Spanish authorities on the investigation.”

Labour Party lawmaker David Lammy on Twitter joined the calls to boycott Rayanair, writing, "Ok boycott @Rayanair if they think it’s ok for a racist man to abuse an elderly black woman and remain on the plane. It’s 63 years since Rosa Parks said 'no' to sitting on the back of the Bus and we ain’t going back."  

The woman's daughter told HuffPost UK that she and her mother will not be flying Ryanair again. 

“The underlying reason behind the man’s abusive behavior comes down to the fact that my mum is a black woman and he didn’t want her sitting next to him," she told HuffPost. "He says it in the video.”

"This is black history month," she added. "My mother has worked here all of her life, paid her taxes and her dues. Why should she have to go through all of this?”

Multiple British lawmakers have said they will be addressing the issue in Parliament.