Air New Zealand has pulled out their in-flight safety video featuring Sports Illustrated models, but not because of the complaints that passengers found it sexist.
The four-minute video titled “Safety in Paradise,” first aired earlier in 2014, features Christie Brinkley, Chrissy Teigen, Jessica Gomes, Hannah Davis and Ariel Meredith teaching viewers safety instructions while in bikinis.
Unlike other in-flight safety videos produced by the airline, including the popular “Hobbit”-themed video, this one was met with criticisms from passengers who found it offensive.
Natasha Young from Melbourne has launched an online petition, asking Air NZ to take down the video.
“A safety video is to alert passengers on what to do in an emergency; it should not be an excuse to objectify the sexualised female body,” her petition reads.
“This video completely disregards passengers who find it offensive for religious reasons, who have body image struggles, who are parents concerned about their children’s impressionable nature, who believe women deserve more respect, and who have teenage daughters who deserve more respect,” the text continues.
“This video is culturally insensitive; it disregards those who are conservative by nature and are uncomfortable with its imagery and disregards passengers who have been exposed to sexual assault. This video creates an unnecessarily difficult and uncomfortable working environment for its female staff, which goes against the entire nature of safety.”
The petition has over 11,000 signatures, with supporters agreeing that the video was sexist and degrading to women.
Air NZ has now taken down the video, but claimed that the move has nothing to do with public pressure.
A spokeswoman told New Zealand Herald that the airline typically changes safety videos every few months, denying that they pulled out “Safety in Paradise” because the company listened to the complaints.
The airline now shows the previously recorded safety video starring Bear Grylls.