Celebrities, particularly those as renowned as Nicole Kidman, take on advertising campaigns to lend credence to a product. Occasionally, the celebrity in question fails to look into the company’s philosophies and may end up supporting a company that contradicts their own beliefs. This seems to be just what has happened with Nicole and her new ad campaign for Etihad Airways.
Ms. Kidman has been called out by the Association of Professional Flight Attendants (Apfa), a union that represents 25,000 flight attendants in the United States, for the Etihad advertisements. Apfa criticized Nicole’s participation in an ad campaign for a company that is just one of many United Arab Emirates airlines that “are well-known in our industry for their discriminatory labour practices and deplorable treatment of female employees.”
Nicole stars in the Etihad commercial, which is intended to portray the “Hollywood glamour” with which the airline purportedly treats each of its passengers.
The spokesperson for Apfa, Laura Glading, released an open letter to Nicole Kidman, citing Ms. Kidman’s role as the U.N. Ambassador for women and reminding her of her inspiring words on International Women’s Day. Ms. Kidman had given hope to many, as she sought to help advance society to a place where “all women and girls have equal opportunities and rights.”
“Later that very same week, we saw that you had begun appearing in a new campaign for Etihad, a company that the Wall Street Journal has publicly reported ‘may fire women if they become pregnant’ and forces flight attendants to live in ‘confinement’ in secure compounds’…These are the types of conditions that Apfa fought to eradicate decades ago in the United States.”
Etihad has responded promptly, denying any mistreatment or substandard conditions, where its female employees are concerned.
“At Etihad Airways, we have become a global, award-winning employer because we value our employees and we treat them with dignity and respect.”
The statement also described policies that allows pregnant workers to stay on under light duty restrictions and are entitled to full compensation, which includes maternity leave, for women with one year of service or more. Etihad’s policy also allows employees to return to full duty status, following the pregnancy.
Nicole Kidman has not yet responded to requests for comment.
Troubles seem to be following Ms. Kidman. Last week, Nicole was reported to have been feeling alienated by her children, for which Nicole has blamed the Scientology tenets taught to them by ex-husband, Tom Cruise.
Currently, Ms. Kidman is working on The Secret In Their Eyes, a crime drama from director Billy Ray, which also stars Julia Roberts.
[Image via Etihad Airways.]