Air Canada sorry for abandoning girl, 12, at airport

Air Canada has apologized to a Winnipeg mother for not having staff escort her daughter from a plane to a waiting relative at the Edmonton airport.

Elaine Arseny said she paid the airline $100 to have her 12-year-old daughter, Kennedy Barker, accompanied as a minor during a trip to Edmonton earlier this month.

The airline has a program to accompany minors to and from its flights. Barker was supposed to be escorted to a waiting relative, but that never happened.

"I'm just disgusted by the whole situation. I'm really disappointed that I put my trust into this company and they didn't follow through," Arseny told CBC News.

Barker spent about 25 minutes wandering around. Fortunately, she had a cellphone and called Arseny, who calmed her down until the relative spotted the girl.

"I was scared for her. I was shocked and disgusted," Arseny said. "The worst thing could have came out of this and I was really upset."

Girl's 1st flight

Barker said the July 1 flight was the first time she ever got on a plane and was nervous about the trip.

Arseny said she phoned Air Canada to complain, but she was told to send an email.

Air Canada said on Thursday that it has apologized to Arseny and offered her a full refund and a $100 voucher toward another flight.

An airline spokesperson told CBC News that officials have also spoken to Arseny and the Edmonton relative as part of an internal review.

The spokesperson declined to comment specifically on what happened at the Edmonton airport, but said its unaccompanied minor program has escorted thousands of young travellers every year over the last three decades.

"Our primary concern/priority is the safety and well-being of the children under our care and this is why we are conducting a full internal review," the spokesperson said in an email.