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Southwest Won’t Terminate Its SeaWorld Relationship

Excerpt from Dallas Morning News

Jan 11, 2014 5:00 am

Skift Take

Maverick airline? Southwest as a good corporate citizen? Southwest is maintaining its SeaWorld relationship and there seems to be a bit of a contradiction and a potential brand hit here.

— Dennis Schaal

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Protesters rallied this week near Southwest Airlines’ headquarters in Dallas, seeking an end to the carrier’s partnership with SeaWorld because of the marine-park giant’s treatment of orca whales and other sea mammals.

Southwest confirmed that animal activists dropped off a Change.org petition signed by more than 27,000 people at its main gate at its Dallas Love Field headquarters. “Southwest needs to understand that they are promoting animal cruelty seen in Blackfish if they continue to partner with SeaWorld as they have done for the last 25 years,” activist Robin Merritt says in her petition to Southwest CEO Gary Kelly on Change.org.

From Skift: Southwest Responds

In its Nuts About Southwest Blog:

Over the past few weeks we’ve observed a number of Customers and community members reach out to Southwest Airlines regarding our partnership with SeaWorld.  We want our Customers to know that we’ve heard your concerns and we do not take them lightly.  I felt it was necessary to share our position on the partnership and hopefully address any concerns.

We have a longstanding relationship with SeaWorld that is based on travel and bringing families together. We are engaged with SeaWorld related to the recent concerns being raised.   We are in a listening and education mode with the goal of upholding our commitments as a good corporate citizen.  As a responsible member of the community, we support several organizations and events that are devoted to maintaining the natural world.

At this time, our partnership with SeaWorld will continue.  If you’d like to know more about Southwest’s commitment to the triple bottom line of Performance, People, and Planet, please read our Southwest Airlines One Report at www.southwestonereport.com

 

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