LOS ANGELES -- An actress on the "The L Word" TV series says she was kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight for kissing her girlfriend.
Leisha Hailey made the claim in a Twitter post Monday. Hailey said a flight attendant said Southwest "was a 'family' airline and kissing was not OK."
Hailey said she was escorted off the airline "for getting upset about the issue." She said the airline "endorses homophobic employees."
"Since when is showing affection towards someone you love illegal? I want to know what Southwest Airlines considers as 'family,' " she wrote.
Hailey demanded a refund and apology, and called on gay people to boycott the airline. The actress, who lives in Los Angeles, was on a flight from Baltimore to St. Louis.
In a statement on its website, Southwest said Hailey's behavior, not her sexual orientation, was the reason she was removed from the flight.
"Initial reports indicate that we received several passenger complaints characterizing the behavior as excessive," the statement says.
"Our crew, responsible for the comfort of all customers on board, approached the passengers based solely on behavior and not gender," the statement continues. "The conversation escalated to a level that was better resolved on the ground, as opposed to in flight."
The airline added: "We regret any circumstance where a passenger does not have a positive experience on Southwest, and we are ready to work directly with the passengers involved to offer our heartfelt apologies for falling short of their expectations."
Hailey is a member of the rock duo Uh Huh Her. She is also a spokeswoman for Olivia, a tourism and entertainment firm that markets to lesbians.
(c)2011 the Los Angeles Times
Visit the Los Angeles Times at www.latimes.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services