A train company in the United Kingdom has apologized “unreservedly” after it responded to a complaint about sexism ― with a sexist comment.
Emily Lucinda Cole used Twitter to call out an unidentified male Virgin Trains manager, who she said told her “go ahead honey” when she threatened to complain about being moved into a busy car on a packed Edinburgh to London journey.
The term was “hideously patronising” in “contexts such as these,” Cole posted on Tuesday morning.
The person running the company’s verified Twitter account replied by asking Cole if she would prefer to be called “pet” or “love” the next time it happened:
Cole said she was “stunned.”
It was “wonderful” to see the company taking complaints “of rude and misogynistic behaviour seriously,” she added sarcastically.
The company’s response was “patronising and belittling,” Cole later told Metro.co.uk. “And would they tweet that to a guy? Nope.” HuffPost couldn’t immediately reach Cole for further comment.
Virgin Trains later apologized “unreservedly” for the tweet, and deleted the post “to avoid causing more offence.”
A Virgin Trains spokesman replied to HuffPost’s questions by repeating the two-sentence statement.
Cole’s posts about her experience did not go unnoticed by other people on Twitter, who also expressed outrage: