Air Canada has announced the flight crew will no longer greet passengers as “ladies and gentlemen,” instead opting to use the gender neutral term “everybody.” The companywide language change will soon be adopted by gate agents, flight attendants and pilots.
In a statement from Air Canada to CTV News, the airline noted the update was made in an attempt to “modernize.”
“We will be amending our onboard announcements to modernize them and remove specific references to gender,” a media spokesperson for the company said in an email to CTV. “We work hard to make sure all employees feel like valued members of the Air Canada family, while ensuring our customers are comfortable and respected when they choose to travel with us.”
The company, which was named one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers for 2019, is receiving mixed reviews about the announcement on Twitter.
While many praised Air Canada for becoming more inclusive, many felt the change was alienating some passengers.
Canada currently offers citizens to identify as gender neutral using “Gender X” on passports. It became the first North American country to allow the nonbinary gender option in 2017.
“All Canadians should feel safe to be themselves, live according to their gender identity and express their gender as they choose,” immigration minister Ahmed Hussen said in a statement in 2017 about the change.
Air Canada did not immediately respond to a request for comment.