http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ire ... 53577.htmlAer Lingus apology over language tests for passenger
CAROL COULTER, Legal Affairs EditorA GREEK telecoms manager who has lived in Cork with her family since 1998 was forced to do a language test in English and Greek before being allowed to board an Aer Lingus flight home to Ireland from Barcelona recently.
Dr Chryssa Dislis, who holds a Greek (and so EU) biometric passport, was travelling to Ireland on January 6th after a short break with her husband and 10-year-old daughter. When they tried to check in for the flight the local agents for Aer Lingus insisted she fill in two forms, consisting of language tests in Greek and English.
When she protested that there was no legal basis for fluency in either language in order to have a Greek passport, their luggage was taken off the aircraft.
Asked for an explanation, the Aer Lingus handling agents’ manager on the ground, she claims, told her this was “because many people from your country travel on false papers”.
The agent’s staff did not ask to see any additional ID and ignored the fact Dr Dislis held a biometric passport, which are regarded as falsification-proof. She had used the same passport to enter Spain from Ireland only six days earlier.
Dr Dislis felt she had no choice but to fill in the forms, and asked for a copy. This was refused on the grounds they were internal documents. Her husband then photographed the forms, but the manager became threatening and said he would call the police, they would be arrested and the camera confiscated. She and her husband insisted the police be called.