The iconic Singapore Girls, the female flight attendants at Singapore Airlines, will no longer face immediate termination should they choose to have a baby. While strict weight and grooming standards will remain, pregnancy is no longer grounds for immediate termination.
Singapore Girls Now “Allowed” To Give Birth And Keep Their Job
The Singapore Girl, dressed in a Pierre Balmain-designed sarong Kebaya since the 1970s, is the image of the airline. Even as airlines in Europe and North America have moved beyond the idea of a flight attendant as eye candy, Singapore Airlines has insisted that a well-dressed, well-groomed, petite female flight attendant is a central part of its brand.
In a city-state in which employee rights are far more restricted than in the west, Singapore Airlines has maintained strict size and weight guidelines for its female flight attendants. Part of those requirements has been that pregnant flight attendants were required to go on unpaid leave. Once they gave birth, they were forced to resign.
That policy is changing, with an internal memo revealing that Singapore’s female flight attendants will now be able to return to their work after birth, provided they lose their baby weight and return to pre-pregnancy physical form.
Furthermore, while pregnant flight attendants will still be grounded, Singapore Airlines will attempt to find ground staff positions for them during their pregnancy. This is not a guarantee, though, and those who are not given such a job will still be placed on unpaid leave.
The policy was updated on July 12th in order “to further support our cabin crew during and after their pregnancy.” The backdrop is a flight attendant shortage that may have prompted this policy change more for reasons of necessity than altruism.
Singapore Airlines has updated its longstanding policy concerning pregnant female flight attendants and will no longer fire those who have the audacity of giving birth to a child. Even so, these flight attendants will not be allowed to return to work until they can meet pre-pregnancy grooming standards, including weight requirements.
What are your thoughts on this new policy update at Singapore Airlines?
(H/T: Paddle Your Own Kanoo)
How kind of Singapore! Yeah yeah they want to hold to a lovely type. But when shortage of employees is a problem, hmm changes are found somewhat acceptable. I must wonder what is the average time of FA employment ?
Well done in calling it out for what it is, Matthew.
Doesn’t really seem like he is calling Singapore Airlines out. He is just reporting the news.
I am surprised to learn of this. That means the higher ranked flight attendants, the ones who wear the red or green sarongs never had any kids. Many of them look like they are in their late 30’s or early 40’s.
Having top notch physical standards are ok. Who wants a fat flight attendant. It should be extended to men, too. Men cannot have a pot belly. Women have to be thin, too.
Criticize Singapore Airlines if people wish, but Singapore Airlines service is superior to Delta, American, or Southwest. Their planes are new and the most technologically advanced.
I might add that Singapore Airlines flight attendants are not as pretty as EVA or China Airlines. That is probably because Singapore is a rich country so the best looking have other job opportunities. In Taiwan, pay is still a bit low so the best looking women do sometimes try to be a flight attendant.
Singapore Airlines and EVA have some weird women’s hair rules. The permitted styles are a bit weird. Hair is not allowed to hang down except if they have a pageboy style.
Derek I don’t remember EVA as having anywhere near the grooming standards as Singapore. EVA FAs while always adequate and acceptable, also had a more harried and tired presentation. As one would expect for a relatively difficult job. And also I remember some senior Singapore FAs that looked quite motherly. Which is why I too was surprised by this post.
Singapore is a rich country but the wealth is not as evenly distributed as you think. So your theory and conclusion are very lacking.
SQ doesn’t even come close to having the youngest and most advanced fleet. In fact, if you want to get technical Frontier even surpasses them. While they may be far superior to U.S. airlines that is really not too difficult, no new here for the past 30 years.
This new change better adjusts to the times. Further, this has nothing to do with “Singapore being a rich country.” The majority of workers and staff in Singapore and with SQ come from many areas around SE Asia with a majority from neighboring Malaysia. In fact, many of the hotel worker shortages in Singapore prior to this summer were caused by the difficulty for Malaysian workers to get back into the country due to restrictions.
It’s good they have relaxed the birthing criteria but not the grooming standards. This sends an important message. We expect women to produce kids but only 2. And then they need to be thin and attractive even after having kids. Women use body positivity as an excuse to be lazy and become fat and ugly. This sends a strong message this is not acceptable.
This is insane misogyny, even by the standards of the trolls that we’ve come to expect to frequent this blog’s comment sections….
But, free speech!
It’s also the truth.
It is true. Thankfully I married a woman from Eastern Europe where people still have standards. 3 kids and she weighs 54kg. Most western women are a waste of time. Get fat after kids as if that’s an acceptable excuse
IME over 30+ years of flying Singapore regularly in the premium cabins, you are much more likely to encounter Singapore Boy than Singapore Girl.
I don’t know whether it’s still the case but Singapore Girl used to be employed on a three year contract with the possibility of a further three year term if her performance was exemplary after which she might be promoted otherwise she was out. Singapore Boy had an easier time and was not out after six years and promotion was much easier. His looks and ability to fit into a sarong were not part of the selection.
So they have to immediately lose weight after pregnancy or be out of a job? Yeah f them! I’m a male but I’m disgusted. Foreigners carriers really do have it worse 🙁
Haha. Cultural difference.
This is not viet jet exploitation. SG is indirectly controlled by Singapore government and capable workers whether flight attendants, mechanics or accountants are almost always placed at another company or role when contracts are not renewed. Social expectation that service workers, particularly women, are to be thin and have good hygiene is not controversial in most of east Asia. If we are being honest those standards apply in most western cultures for high end service professionals as well. The key difference is the question of whether flight attendants are service professionals or hall monitors. At SG, they are service professionals and it shows. At AA, UA, ect, they are not and it most definitely shows. Given a choice between SG and UA, I’ll choose SG every single time. Why wouldn’t I choose to receive help if I need it and be treated with respect rather than being scolded and greeted with an eye roll?
didn’t know this was a thing…i will say i saw a whole crew of singapore girls walk past me while waiting for an Air Canada check-in in FRAnkfurt a/p.
I didn’t particularly find any of them attractive at a glance.
Never flown SQ. Maybe later next year.
I agree with this change, but please maintain the weight requirements. Do not sink to the bottom like US airlines. Standards are important.
Thrombocytopenia is a condition in which the blood platelet count is low. It is well established that the mild thrombocytopenia frequency is higher in normal pregnancy. This type of thrombocytopenia was named pregnancy-induced thrombocytopenia. However, recently, it has been widely known as gestational thrombocytopenia (GT). The rate is higher in women with a prior GT history and multiple pregnancies. However, it appears that GT is a physiological response to the pregnancy; placenta’s peculiar structure and its unique blood flow pattern play major roles in GT development. There are no specific, precise, or known underlying pathophysiological mechanisms of GT, and no new specific management strategies are published yet. Therefore, we decided to do a non-systematic review of any recent updates that had been published in PubMed, EMBASE, and Web of Science about the pathophysiology of GT, its treatment, and other related topics.
see more: https://www.cureus.com/articles/84295-gestational-thrombocytopenia-a-review-on-recent-updates