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April 13, 2017

Public Citizen Applauds U.S. Sen. Van Hollen’s ‘Customers Not Cargo Act’ to Prevent Future Corporate Airline Assaults

Statement of Lisa Gilbert, Vice President of Legislative Affairs for Public Citizen

Note: In response to public pleas for greater consumer protections in the wake of a United Airlines passenger being dragged from his seat Sunday after refusing to give it up for commuting crew members, U.S. Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) has introduced legislation to prohibit carriers from forcibly removing boarded passengers from a flight due to overbooking, oversales or airline staff seeking to fly as passengers.

Airlines and corporations clearly are not people, because if they were, a number of them would have been arrested and prosecuted for assault, theft and/or bad public interactions with their customers. Senator Van Hollen’s legislation is a timely and overdue step to reassert the rights and importance of the American consumer in the marketplace and in our democracy.

Public Citizen encourages all members of the Senate to respond to the justifiable and widespread public outrage by co-sponsoring this timely legislation.

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