The incident happened on the plane set to take off from Denver into New Jersey's Newark International Airport.
"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," passenger Eliz Orban said on Instagram. "And what blows my mind even more is that the WHO recommends against face masks for kids under the age of 5. AGAINST. And this decision was "based on expert opinion on childhood developmental milestones, challenges with mask compliance, and the autonomy required to wear a mask properly."
Video shows the couple trying to put on their daughter's mask multiple times without any success. The couple also attempted to cover her face with the mask, but United Airlines did not allow it.
United Airlines released a statement on the incident.
"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."
Orban said the family was excited about their weekend trip to New Jersey/New York City, where her husband grew up.
"We are premier silver members at @united, so we always fly with them," she said. "In fact, we had flown with Edeline 4 times already since the pandemic, without ever having an issue."
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