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Train Company Forced To Apologise For Operator Saying ‘Good Afternoon, Ladies & Gentleman’

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Train Company Forced To Apologise For Operator Saying ‘Good Afternoon, Ladies & Gentleman’

Should the term be banned?

A London North Eastern Railway customer, a non-binary in particular, recently took to Twitter to air a complaint about addressing passengers with the phrase ‘ladies and gentlemen, ‘boys and girls.’ “Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. So as a non-binary person, this announcement doesn’t apply to me, so I won’t listen.” The non-binary identified as @laurencec123 wrote in the post.  

@laurencec123 sparked outrage after complaining about LNER addressing customers as ‘ladies and gentlemen.’

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laurencec123/Twitter

The Twitter user claimed the phrase doesn’t apply, so they wouldn’t listen.

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laurencec123/Twitter

Initially, the above tweet didn’t quite garner attention, but with LNER’s response, it became a hit. The reply reads: “I’m sorry to see this, Laurence, our Train managers, should not be using language like this, and I thank you for bringing it to my attention.” 

People have since slammed LNER for apologizing and asked if companies should ban the phrases.

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LNER/Twitter

LNER added: “Please could you let me know which service you are on, and I will ensure they remain as inclusive as we strive to be at LNER.” This has since sparked outrage and even debate on whether companies should completely ban phrases like this. 

“I’m sorry to see this; Laurence, our Train managers, should not be using language like this.” LNER had said.

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PA Wire/PA Images

Jarley, who was with Laurence, a Rail, Maritime, and Transport Union’s LGBT Rep, has also defended the complaint. “Both Laurence and I were customers of the railway- being rail staff does not absolve an operator from the duty of care or responsibility to be inclusive. I sat with Laurence when this tweet was sent. Both of us are non-binary, and we were both alarmed and uncomfortable by the lack of inclusion.” Jarley said. 

Jarley stepped in and defended the complaint, revealing they were both uncomfortable by the lack of inclusion.

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Twitter

Despite this, Twitter users, without hesitation, slammed LNER for apologizing, claiming there was nothing wrong with the friendly greeting. “Both WORK for the rail system, but they won’t listen to train announcements that don’t apply to them? This isn’t a customer complaint from a member of the general public; it two transport EMPLOYEES pushing their agenda.” One user wrote. 

Twitter users didn’t, however, take it lightly and claimed there was nothing wrong with the friendly greeting.

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Train Company Forced To Apologise For Operator Saying 'Good Afternoon, Ladies & Gentleman' 18
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Another, Mark Jenkinson, the Conservation MP for Workington, added: “You’d be forgiven for thinking this Train manager had unleashed a tirade of abuse. Should not be using language like this. He’d said, “Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. Identify however you like, but can we stop this nonsense.” 

A few others questioned what an alternative phrase would be

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However, a few others questioned what an alternative phrase would be if train managers wished to remain welcoming and courteous when greeting their passengers. Responding to the critics, LNER insisted that the staff member wouldn’t get into trouble and stated: “We’re not bending over backward to accommodate any one person; we are doing our best to accommodate every person. There’s the difference.”

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