Until just a few months ago, Qatar Airways’ hostesses were laid off if they became pregnant; a discriminatory practice condemned by the International Labour Organisation (ILO). The Doha Company has since backtracked, by eliminating the most contentious provisions of the employment contracts of their 7,200 hostesses. Where pregnancy does occur, they will be offered a temporary substitution ground job.
In a statement released this summer, the company also stated that since this new policy came into force: "Out of 11 cabin crew who were pregnant, there have been 8 placed in ground based occupations, with none leaving our employment unless they themselves wished to resign (three of which have chosen to do so out of their own free will)."
It will take time for all airlines to fall in line with the same rules. Qatar Airways’ hostesses, who were previously not allowed to marry, now have the opportunity to do so, but only with the agreement of the company.