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Major Airlines Break With United, Will Not Invoke Vaccine Mandate For Employees

Sally Kent

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August 15, 2021

Multiple major airlines have announced they will not follow United Airline’s lead in mandating employees receive the vaccine or face termination. Southwest, American, and Delta CEOs say they will not require workers to be vaccinated

The Hill reports:

Southwest Airlines CEO Gary Kelly said in a memo obtained by CNN that while the company will “continue to strongly encourage” vaccination, it would not be changing its position on vaccine requirements.

Delta CEO Ed Bastian said in an interview that 75 percent of his airline’s workforce was already vaccinated, appearing to argue that a vaccine mandate was unnecessary. CNN notes that Delta was the first airline to announce that all new hires would have to be vaccinated.

Though not requiring vaccines, American Airlines is incentivizing vaccines for their workers by giving them one extra vacation day in 2022 if they get vaccinated by the end of this month, CNN reports.

“We certainly encourage it everywhere we can, encourage it for our customers and our employees, but we’re not putting mandates in place,” American Airlines CEO Doug Parker said in an interview.

United was the first airline to announce it would be forcing its employees to get the vaccine.