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Airport workers learn how to be nice

May 7, 2008 at 7:18 PM

NEW YORK, May 7 (UPI) -- New York's Kennedy Airport announced at least 500 International Terminal employees are receiving training on how to be nice to travelers.

The class, which is run by the Human Resiliency Institute at Fordham University, is focused on teaching airport workers how to remain calm and pleasant even when confronted by irate airline passengers, Newsday, a newspaper headquartered on Long Island, reported Wednesday.

"Those who help travelers help themselves," instructor Tom Murphy told his class. "The travelers will be happy and you will go home more rested at the end of the day."

The niceness instruction follows 2007's eight-year high for customer complaints, marking a 70 percent increase over 2006.

Students said they found the advice given in the class helpful.

"This helps you perfect skills you already have and gives you the steps you should take ... because no two situations are ever the same," said Shellyann McKay, 28, an Air Train agent-operator. "You might encounter a passenger who wasn't helped or someone tried to help them and gave them the wrong information, and by the time they get to you they've had it."

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