Lifestyle

Plus-size influencer Jae’lynn Chaney rips airport worker who allegedly refused to push her in wheelchair up jet bridge: ‘Blatantly ignored’

A “plus-size” travel influencer claimed a Washington airport worker refused to push her in a wheelchair up the jet bridge because of her size, which left her gasping for air when she was forced to walk off the plane.

Jae’lynn Chaney, 27, revealed on TikTok that she requested “wheelchair assistance” during her trip to Sea-Tac International Airport in Washington.

“I’m a plus-size wheelchair user and on a recent flight to the Sea-Tac airport, I requested wheelchair assistance, as I always do,” a narrator said on Chaney’s post. “When it came time for me to deplane, I saw the employee who would be assisting me with my wheelchair waiting for me in the entry of the jet bridge.”

Plus-size travel influencer, Jae’lynn Chaney, claims she was discriminated against during a recent flight to Seattle. jaebaeproductions/Instagram

The influencer, who has amassed over 135,500 followers on the platform, claimed the employee started walking away from the plane when she saw the traveler deboard the plane.

“As I approached her and she realized she’d be assisting me and not one of the smaller passengers she started to walk away with the wheelchair while making comments about my size,” Chaney claimed.

Chaney, who can walk, allegedly told the employee she needed the chair but was “blatantly ignored,” forcing her to walk up “one of the longest jet bridges I’ve encountered.”

The long walk took a lot of energy out of the influencer, and she claimed she nearly fainted.

“By the time she let me reach the wheelchair and sit down my lips were white, my oxygen levels had dropped, and I almost fainted,” Chaney recalled.

The Post has reached out to the airport.

Chaney, who can walk, allegedly told the employee she needed the chair but was “blatantly ignored,” forcing her to walk up “one of the longest jet bridges I’ve encountered.” jaebaeofficial/TikTok

Chaney said the recent flight was her first time flying without oxygen in four years.

“This woman just assumed I could walk and would rather me do that instead of her having to push someone plus-size up the jet bridge. All the other attendants wheeled their passengers up the jet bridge but my needs were disregarded,” Chaney said.

“This is discrimination. NoBODY should be treated this way.”

@jaebaeofficial

Wasn’t sure when I’d share this, but staying silent isn’t an option anymore. If you’ve faced something similar, you’re not alone. Discrimination is real, and I don’t want anyBODY else to ever experience something like this. I don’t plan on stopping the fight for change in the travel industry and beyond. EveryBODY deserves respect and dignity, regardless of size, ability, or any other factor. Let’s stand together to ensure equality for all. ⁣⁣ •⁣⁣ •⁣⁣ •⁣⁣ #BodyEqualityInTravel#TravelForAll#AccessForAll#PlusSize#PlusSizeTravel#FlyingWhileFat#TravelingWhileFat#FlyingWhilePlusSize#PlusSizeTravelPetition

♬ Sad song by piano and violin(886018) – NOVA

Chaney says she couldn’t remain silent on her experience and won’t stop fighting for change in the travel industry as she “stands” to ensure equality for all.

“If you’ve faced something similar, you’re not alone. Discrimination is real, and I don’t want anyBODY else to ever experience something like this,” she said.

Chaney, who has to purchase an extra seat when flying, received criticism for her “fight to change the travel industry,” in June 2023 when she demanded passengers pay fees so she can have the extra seat to sit in.

Chaney, who has to purchase an extra seat when flying, received criticism for her “fight to change the travel industry.” jaebaeproductions/Instagram
Chaney said the recent flight was her first time flying without oxygen. jaebaeproductions/Instagram

“People with smaller bodies get to pay one fare to get to their destination,” Chaney told CNN Travel at the time.

“We have to pay two fares, even though we’re getting the same experience. If anything, our experiences are a little bit more challenging.”

In October, Chaney moved her fight for “plus-size travelers” away from the air and took it to the hotels, demanding changes be made to create size-inclusive amenities as the current ones restrict the movement of overweight guests.

Among her many demands were to “make elevators and hallways [more] spacious, to allow for easy movement of larger individuals, and those utilizing mobility devices.”