A young couple say they were made to get off a flight because their daughter refused to wear a face mask.
Eliz Orban had been on the plane with her husband and two-year-old preparing for take-off when they encountered a problem.
Edeline appears to refuse to put on her mask, prompting United Airline staff to kick them off the plane, according to company policy which demands that every two-year-old or older wear a face covering.
Eliz, a body builder, filmed herself tearfully explaining the situation from the airport in Colorado.
“We just got kicked off a flight because our two-year-old would not put on a mask,” she said.
“And we’re banned off United forever because a two-year-old would not put on a mask.”
The airline has since denied that the family are banned from future flights.
In a video she took of the incident, which occurred on board the flight from Colorado to Newark, New Jersey, Edeline can be seen refusing to put on a mask.
The young girl is clearly upset and twists her face away from her dad, who is trying to place the mask over her mouth.
After a period of unsuccessful attempts, a gate agent is seen coming onto the plane and approaching the family.
He tells them: “Hello sir. I’m going to have to ask you to grab your belongings and exit the aircraft.”
As he does Eliz’s husband can be seen holding the mask over Edeline’s face as she sits on his lap.
“You gotta be kidding me,” the dad says.
“Why? We’re over here holding this mask on her face.”
The agent then replies: “I’m sorry sir. I gave you an opportunity.
“I’ve got to ask you to get off this plane.”
Despite their attempts to explain that their daughter will not wear the mask and they cannot force her to, the family is made to leave.
As they are the gate agent tells them that their possessions, including their daughter’s car seat, will remain on the plane.
“Our child seat is on that plane. How are we supposed to go home?” Eliz is heard asking.
“Is this an actual joke?”
Eliz later shared the video on social media, where it received millions of views.
She explained that they had been heading to New Jersey to see family and close friends.
In the caption she wrote: “Today, we were asked to leave the plane after it had rolled out, and they had to bring it back to the gate, because our 2 year old daughter would not “comply” and keep her mask on.
“Since our bags weren’t taken off the plane (they did get our child seat) – we have to wait until tomorrow till they deliver it to our house in Breckenridge which is 2 hours from the DIA airport.”
She said that her and her husband have flown with United four times during the pandemic and are premier silver members.
Eliz also cited World Health Organisation recommendations that children under five do not wear face masks – advice the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control rejects in favour of mask wearing for everyone two and older in public.
A spokesperson for United said: “The health and safety of our employees and customers is our highest priority, which is why we have a multi-layered set of policies, including mandating that everyone onboard two and older wears a mask.
“These procedures are not only backed by guidance from the CDC and our partners at the Cleveland Clinic, but they’re also consistent across every major airline.
“We are investigating this specific incident and have made contact with the family.
“We also refunded their tickets and returned their car seat and bags.”