Passenger with psoriasis questioned about skin condition before being allowed on easyJet flight

Holly Dillon, pictured with Daredevil actor Jon Bernthal. Photo / Facebook
Holly Dillon, pictured with Daredevil actor Jon Bernthal. Photo / Facebook

A woman who suffers from psoriasis was outraged after being questioned about her skin before being allowed to board a flight.

Holly Dillon, 26, from London, was returning home from Faro to Luton airport last night when the incident occurred.

She claims the easyJet check-in attendant in Portugal raised "health and safety concerns" before allowing her to get on the aircraft.

The assistant film director had gone abroad as the sun's rays are known to ease symptoms of psoriasis, such as patches of scaly skin.

Caused by a problem with the immune system, it triggers skin cells to regenerate too quickly.

She told MailOnline today she had booked the holiday after suffering a bad flare-up triggered by tonsillitis.

"I know the sun is the best thing for my skin and so booked a mini-break to read and relax."

Speaking to the Evening Standard last night, she said: "I've just been stopped in Portugal checking in to the easyJet flight from Faro back to London before boarding the plane. The boarding desk clerk just stopped and indirectly asked my friend, not me, whether I had a problem with my face or skin.

"Wearing no make-up coming back from holiday - the one thing that helps my skin - I felt great, and my psoriasis has completely gone down, and he actually stopped me.

"I said, 'Excuse me, you should be asking me directly if you think there is something wrong.' He said it's a health and safety procedure. It was completely unacceptable, rude and unprofessional."

She said today: "I understand there are some health conditions where you can't travel. It's how he questioned that I'm angry about. He should have explained the health and safety issue and also asked me first, not my friend. It really was unpleasant and pathetic."

Breaking point. Bad weather in London, so much #psoriasis on my face, I've given in and I'm going to sparingly use this on my face. Difficult being so aware that Elidel is an immunosuppressant mixed with all of the knowledge from our #eczema friends who have taught us about topical withdrawals it makes me hesitant, but until I get into holistic mode I'm going to try it. Of course reading the fine print it says avoid alcohol...goodbye red wine and G&T's. Alcohol free detox until my holiday. A strawberry daiquiri on the beach is essential! Any tips let me know. I haven't used this before! Thanks all keep sharing and #getyourskinout #psoriasis #psoriasisawareness #skin #topicalsteroidwithdrawal Ps- this photo does not do justice of how covered and red my face is. Good old Instagram - I haven't even used a filter!

A photo posted by @getyourskinout on

I woke up like this - morning sunny vibes singing along to Beyoncé but also referencing the outbreak of #psoriasis on my face! Nose and forehead have some small spots despite me catching rays this weekend I think the mix of the tonsillitis hangover and time of the month sent my body into over drive ! Absolutely loving this sunny weather enjoyed sitting in the garden and stripping off the ultimate #getyourskinout weekend! How was everyone else's weekend? Lots of posts about vegan,gluten and dairy free diets helping make a huge difference which is great. Here's to the start of a great week. Full week of sunshine I set you the challenge to #getyourskinout Even if it's just for a few mins a day. Summer is coming let's be comfortable in summer clothes and work that psoriasis! ?????? #psoriasis #psoriasisawareness

A photo posted by @getyourskinout on

Psoriasis, which affects around three per cent of the world's population, is also linked to an increased risk for depression, heart disease and diabetes, among other conditions.

Ms Dillon is also the founder of the #GetYourSkinOut campaign, which aims to increase awareness of psoriasis and challenge misconceptions.

Speaking to the Huffington Post after it launched last year, she said: "Psoriasis is particularly difficult in summer because when you're in shorts or a dress you'll get these kind of constipated looks on the Tube where people look at your skin like, 'What is that?'

"They don't stop and ask and you can't expect them to, so as well as helping people with psoriasis, this project also aims to answer the questions people are too embarrassed to ask."

She obtained the services of professional photographer Lewis Khan to take pictures of her undergoing PUVA treatment at Chelsea and Westminster hospital.

PUVA, or photochemotherapy, is a type of ultraviolet radiation (phototherapy) used for severe skin diseases

Ms Dillon suffered her first bout of psoriasis at 14 and was later diagnosed with guttate psoriasis.

This is where the skin erupts with small, salmon-pink papules which usually have a fine scale.

More than a decade on, she still suffers regular flare-ups.

In a statement, the airline said: "easyJet is sorry to hear of Ms Dillon's experience while boarding flight EZY2020 from Faro to Luton on Sunday 19 June 2016. As soon as we were made aware this morning, we started an investigation.

"All of our staff are carefully selected and undergo training to maintain our high level of customer care which may not have been upheld in this occasion. We will be addressing this with the ground staff member involved as we always have high standards to maintain. Our customer team is contacting Ms Dillon to discuss this with her directly."

- Daily Mail

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