“We will say with confidence that our pilots will not be taking part in any official or unofficial job actions,” the union, the Southwest Airways Pilots Affiliation, mentioned within the assertion.
The union mentioned that its members “will proceed to beat” administration’s “poor planning” and different outdoors challenges, including that Southwest pilots “at all times keep the best stage of accountability to their crews, their passengers, and our airline.”
Southwest mentioned final week that it will be part of a number of of its rivals in requiring all staff to get vaccinated, setting a Dec. 8 deadline to take action. The mandate is important to proceed doing enterprise with the federal government after President Biden ordered all large federal contractors to require vaccination, Southwest mentioned.
“Southwest Airways should be part of our trade friends in complying with the federal authorities’s COVID-19 vaccination directive,” the airline’s chief govt, Gary Kelly, mentioned in an announcement asserting the mandate. “I encourage all Southwest staff to fulfill the federal directive, as rapidly as attainable, since we worth each particular person and wish to guarantee job safety for all.”
The pilots union, which mentioned that it doesn’t oppose vaccination, had warned that enforcement of such a mandate might result in labor shortages and flight disruptions. The union is suing the airline for taking a collection of “unilateral actions,” together with the vaccination requirement.
In a Friday court docket submitting, the union mentioned that the mandate “unlawfully imposes new situations of employment” on pilots and requested a choose to cease the airline from enacting that requirement together with different insurance policies and actions.
United Airways, the primary massive U.S. service to impose a mandate, mentioned lately that nearly all of its 67,000 employees have been vaccinated, apart from about 2,000 who had utilized for spiritual or medical exemptions and fewer than 250 who face being fired for failing to conform. American Airways, Alaska Airways and JetBlue Airways have since followed suit.
Delta Air Strains has mentioned it is not going to require vaccination, however will charge unvaccinated employees $200 more per month for medical health insurance.