From Audra Atkinson, former chief stewardess, sacked for having a third baby.
Audra joined Malaysia Airlines as a stewardess in 1989 and received various commendations. In 2003, however, two years after being promoted as chief stewardess, Audra was sacked by the airline for conceiving a third child.
She sent this e-mail to Idris Jala in 2006, wishing him well and hoping for understanding. It was to no avail. Last week, I attended the proceeding of her case at the Industrial Court. Idris Jala's Malaysia Airlines seemed determined to kill off any hope or desire on Audra's part to be "forgiven" by the national carrier for giving birth to another Malaysian.
Please take time to read her mail. In the spirit of Ramadan, I appeal to Idris to have some compassion. The benefits of Ramadan are not confined to Muslims.
Audra's husband, Tony Yew, a former steward with Mas, posted a chronology of the case here after the Sept 5 hearing. Deadline for her final submission is October 5. (Tony and Audra served a combined 21.5 years with the airline).
(Former Chief Stewardess) Audra Denise Atkinson
Staff No: xxxxxx-2
7 March 2006
En Idris Jala
Jln Sultan Ismail
Ref: Audra Denise Atkinson vs.
Airlines [ Malaysia Industrial Relations Courtref:JPP(W.P/S) Sek 20/2435/2003]
First, let me congratulate you on your recent appointment as Managing Director of Malaysia Airlines. I read with interest your plans to turn around the company, and sincerely wish you and your team the best.
I draw your attention to the above reference, and would like to tell you why I am writing to you. For one, I am doing so in hope that you will be able to see this case from the viewpoint of a loyal and dedicated employee.
I was employed in August 1989, starting of as a Trainee Flight Stewardess, and moving up the ranks until my appointment as Chief Stewardess, on 15th July 2002. During my tenure of service, I have received numerous commendations both from passengers and superiors, as well as acknowledgements from the management with regard to my performance as a cabin crew with the Company. It was also during this time, when getting selected as a member of the crew to serve on the Prime Minister’s Chartered Flight, to ferry his entourage to various countries, was seen as a privilege; something most crew would see as a reward.
I was fortunate to have served on two such flights.
During my tenure of service, I have not had any complaints made towards me from any of my superiors, or peers, and I take pride in that. My service record, to my knowledge, is unblemished.
However, in 2003, specifically on 30th October 2003, on finding out that I was pregnant with my third child, one which by the grace of god was bestowed upon me, I immediately contacted my union (MASEU) and sought assistance to seek a ground position.
A meeting was held between the then, Manager of Cabin Crew, Encik Kamal Azran and the Union Officials, during which I was requested to draft an application for a ground position for the attention of the management. Subsequently on the 31st of October 2003, I was issued a termination letter. I then lodged a wrongful termination with the Industrial Relations Department under Section 20 on 10th November 2003.
I appealed my termination to the General Manager of Human Resources, on 10th November 2003. The Industrial Relations Dept then called for an conciliation meeting on the 14th of January 2004, during which I was asked if I was keen on a ground position. Following advice from MASEU, I again appealed for reinstatement, on 16th January 2004. On 19th January 2004, En Chong Min Sin, acting on behalf of the General Manager of Human Resources sent a letter for the attention of The Director General of Industrial Relations Dept (W.P/S) requesting them to drop my case, as the company was in the process of offering me a job. On the other hand, I was never informed of this. However, what I was informed was that my appeal was turned down on the 19th of February 2004.
My case was referred to the
Industrial Relations Courtby the Minister Of Human Resources vide a letter dated 1st December 2005. My case was mentioned on 8th February 2006, and will again be mentioned on 16th May 2006.
My case is being handled by MASEU, through the services of an attorney. Malaysia Airlines is being represented by Skrine & Co.
On 8th February, at 3.00pm, I was called to be interviewed by the Asst General Manager of Customer Services MAS, Encik Kamal Azran as well as a representative of Human Resources, Encik Shahrom. Durin this interview, I was asked about my intentions, and the job that I would like to apply for.
Sir, I am writing to you to highlight to you that I am merely a person looking to restore my position in society. I have undergone enough stress, as well as financial setback, since my termination. My fault? I had a third child. I seek your understanding, and I am sure from your experience, working for an MNC, that these rules, are perhaps not for today’s society. Given the length and cost of my case, I am merely asking for a reinstatement to my old job, one that I take pride in, and have been told many times, that I was good at. At this point, I would also like to inform you that one of my appeals, in 2005, through the advice of MASEU was to apply for the position of Grooming Officer in the Cabin Crew Dept. Speaking to the Manager, she welcomed my application and added that I was suitable for the position and she had no objections to my applying. However, because of my outstanding case, she could not consider me unless I was reinstated.
Your plans to resurrect the company included a call for proper resource planning and management, and I can safely say that I will fit hand in glove into this role, not to mention that I need a job, to sustain my family.
I was advised against any form of communication officially, with the company, but I take the view that having made our intentions clearly to each other, perhaps we can settle this amicably.
I know that you do not have to act on this simply because I wrote to you, but I sincerely hope that you are able to see this from my point of view, and assist me in getting back to where I was.
Lastly, I would like to thank you for taking the time to read this letter, and I am attaching various documents to support my claim.
I remain hopeful for your reply, and kind assistance.
Thursday, September 13, 2007
E-mail to Idris Jala, Malaysia Airlines boss
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