Southwest Airlines dropped a plan to put unvaccinated Staff on unpaid leaves. The employees who have applied for medical or religious exemption but have not received it still can work continuously.
Earlier, the Biden administrators recommended that the federal contractors should be vaccinated against coronavirus by Dec.8 and only a few employees will get a medical or religious exemption. Federal Contractors have very stringent rules compared to large companies, which will let them for COVID testing on regular basis as a substitute to a vaccination.
Both Southwest Airlines and American Airlines are between the carriers that have federal contractors. Both these carriers have assured their Staff about job security under the vaccination order. They have requested their employees to apply for an exemption if they cannot take vaccination due to medical reasons or strict religious principles.
The Pilot’s labor unions have asked to shut off the compulsion or even requested for a few alternatives such as testing against COVID-19 on regular basis.
The Southwest is providing employees until Nov.24 to complete their full vaccination or apply for an exemption. The airline is going to continue to pay them until they review their requests and they will also allow those employees to work, who have been rejected to continue working. The airline has confirmed the new policy change about COVID-19 vaccination.
American Airlines also said that they are looking for exploring other choices that would permit their Staff to continue to work.