People

Near to Our Heart: Civility and Respect

In February 2017, Southwest: The Magazine featured a letter penned by our Chairman of the Board and CEO Gary Kelly entitled Embracing Civility and the Golden Rule. He addressed the growing tension and discord that characterize much of our society. “We are becoming more divisive and less civil toward each other. I see it in politics and the media, and I especially see it online in social forums.” He challenged readers to embrace civility, respect for others, and a willingness to try to understand differing points of view. “I’m confident the result would be a better life for us all.”

Gary’s message struck a chord with readers. Customers and Employees began to respond with letters and emails, thanking Gary for sharing his timely and relevant message. Gary has continued to champion this message through various channels, including his LinkedIn page.

At Southwest, we believe civility and respect are at the core of how we treat our Employees and our Customers. The Golden Rule and the importance of having a Servant’s Heart have always been at the Heart of what it means to Live the Southwest Way. Our emphasis on civility and respect is simply a way that we can put our beliefs into a relevant, timely context.

We understand that civility and respect are not destinations—achieving a more civil world will require ongoing conversations and actions by us and many others. Embracing civility and respect is a journey. Through this work, we hope to live out our beliefs so we can provide a strong example of civility to the world around us.

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