Delta employees sue Lands’ End, allege new uniforms made them sick

More than 500 Delta Air Lines employees have filed a class-action lawsuit against manufacturer Lands’ End, alleging the uniforms it produced have caused health issues for some workers.

The suit, filed in the Western District of Wisconsin Court on behalf of 525 Delta employees, contends several employees suffered – among other health issues – severe respiratory illnesses, rashes, blisters, boils, hair loss, hives, sinus problems, headaches, fatigue, nosebleeds and anxiety after wearing the required uniforms, NBC News reported.

The employees represented in the suit work in various capacities for the airline – including flight attendants, customer service representatives and ramp and gate agents – but roughly 90 percent of the complainants are flight attendants, the network reported.

According to the suit, the uniforms – unveiled in 2016 – have been worn by about 64,000 Delta employees since May 29, 2018, and the materials used are characterized as “high stretch, wrinkle and stain-resistant, waterproof, anti-static and deodorizing."

Specifically, the suit asserts the uniforms “pose an ongoing, unreasonable risks of physical harm... including threatening the [employees] with future serious health problems because of an allergic and/or sensitization response,” CNN reported.

Although Lands’ End has declined to comment on the pending litigation, Delta issued the following statement to NBC News Friday night, emphasizing its commitment to employee safety:

“Our top priority continues to be the safety of our employees, which is why we invested in a rigorous toxicology study to determine if there was a universal scientific issue with the uniform. The results of the study confirm our uniforms meet the highest textile standards…with the exception of the optional flight attendant apron, which we removed from the collection.”

According to CNN, however, employees conducted their own tests of the uniforms that found the presence of “chemicals and heavy metals far in excess of industry accepted safe levels for garments.”