Dominion of New York


May 14, 2012

Black French Flight Attendant Forced to Hide Dreadlocks Under Wig

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Written by: Erik Kambel
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Aboubakar Traoré was hired as a flight attendant by the Air France in 1999.

A version of this story originally appeared on the website of our content partner,


Black French flight attendant for Air France has been barred from wear dreadlocks when his on-the-clock. The company allows black women to wear their hair in dreadlocks, but not him. To comply with the requirement, he is now forced to wear a wig. 

According to the petition “Hair France, Don’t Touch Our Roots,” Aboubakar Traoré was hired as a flight attendant by the Air France in 1999. But he had no idea that such a hairstyle could “harm” the image of the company, considering that not a single Air France regulation prohibits male flight attendants from wearing dreadlocks. Nevertheless, his managers at Air France went as far as forcing him to wear a wig to hide his hairstyle.

However, Air France’s regulations explicitly allow the wearing of dreadlocks by women, recognizing as such that the hairdo can have strong associations to an individual’s identity.

On May 5th demonstrators protested outside the office of Air France in Paris to protest the airline’s refusal to change the rule. They want the company to genuinely consider the ethnic diversity of its personnel, as well of the evolving society, within its regulations. They also want the company to halt all disciplinary measures being imposed against the flight attendant.

Discrimantion _ Air France s’acharne by AncFrance


Photo Courtesy of Flickr/Planet Observer