Two United Airlines flight attendants are suing the company, claiming that it almost solely uses younger, white attendants on charter flights for the Los Angeles Dodgers, allegedly per the team’s request.

According to CBS News, the lawsuit, which was filed with the Los Angeles Superior Court, alleges that several nonwhite female flight attendants were removed from Dodgers charter flights and were replaced with “young White thin women who did not have to interview for the highly coveted positions.” It also alleged that white United employees have engaged in racist, discriminatory and antisemitic behavior toward their nonwhite colleagues on those charter flights, which the suit states occur around 60 times per baseball season.

Darby Quezada, a plaintiff in the suit, is Black, Mexican and Jewish. She said that she was referred to as the “flight’s maid” because they needed a “Mexican to clean the bathrooms,” according to the lawsuit. She was also instructed to stop speaking Spanish with a Dodger player because “we are in America.” Quezada also claimed she was told, “You know Jesus died for you even if you don’t believe,” and “You don’t look Jewish,” as well as other antisemitic comments.

Another Black United employee, Dawn Todd, is also a plaintiff in the lawsuit. She claimed that she endured retaliation after complaining about being removed from the charter flights, not receiving the same benefits and perks as her white counterparts did on the charter flights, and the racism and ageism she allegedly experienced while on the job.

“It shouldn’t be based on the color of my skin, I can’t change it, she can’t change it,” Todd told KCAL News on Monday.

Todd and Quezada told KCAL News that they were initially selected to be part of United’s charter team, but their assignments were repeatedly denied by the airline, which they believe was due to their race and other physical biases. The attendants they chose over them were less experienced and did not have to undergo an interview for the role. Todd and Quezada said they believe the replacement flight attendants were only selected over them because they have “the look.”

“I looked at the list and that’s when they added three blonde hair, blue-eyed, Caucasian individuals,” Quezada told KCAL News.

Sam S. Yebri, Todd and Quezada’s attorney, said that even though the Dodgers are not listed as a defendant in the case, it’s possible that the alterations were made based on the team’s preferences.

“There’s either discrimination against them specifically because they were demoted and we need to understand why, because they have perfect records, employment records here, ” Yebri said, per CBS News. “Or the system is broken. Either the Dodgers were making decisions and United was deferring to them, or — what we know is it was not random.”

He also issued a statement shortly after the suit was filed Monday.

“Major America corporations like United Airlines must understand that it is illegal to make staffing decisions based on an employee’s race and looks, even if it is meant to please major clients like the Los Angeles Dodgers,” the statement read, according to CBS News. “United’s blatantly discriminatory staffing decisions allowed the cancer of racism and antisemitism to metastasize on the flights themselves.”

Todd and Quezada are asking for a jury trial, and an unknown amount in damages.

After CBS News requested a statement from United, the airline shared that it’s committed to fostering a workplace that offers equal opportunity to all, regardless of their physical appearance.

“United fosters an environment of inclusion and does not tolerate discrimination of any kind. We believe this lawsuit is without merit and intend to defend ourselves vigorously,” the statement read.


United Airlines faced a similar lawsuit back in 2020, in which it was accused of discriminating against a Black and Jewish attendant for various charter services for athletic teams. Per CBS News, the suit alleged that those flights were typically staffed with only crew members who “fit a specific visual image” like “young, White, female and predominantly blonde/blue-eyed” employees.