We previously reported that Texas may be giving Southwest a break by banning the use of vaccine mandates in the state.
However, now both American and Southwest, which are based in Texas, have announced that because of Joe Biden’s demand that all the employees of federal contractors have to be vaccinated by December 8, both airlines will be complying by continuing to mandate vaccinations for their employees, despite the order of the Texas Governor Greg Abbott. All the major airlines are federal contractors and they don’t want to lose that money. Both are requiring that employees submit proof of vaccination by November 24 — just in time to make things really difficult for the holiday season if there are more “sickouts” or people refusing to go along with it.
Southwest employees have filed a lawsuit against vaccine mandates and requested a temporary restraining or order to block the mandate from being implemented. The workers also noted that no discussion was held with the union regarding the mandate. Notice Friday is also when the Southwest’s “issues” started.
This is the Temporary Restraining Order, which the Pilot’s Association submitted against #SouthwestAirlinesOn Friday, in Federal Court https://t.co/o6zFK4zgJa
— Election Wizard (@ElectionWiz) October 10, 2021
In a notice, the union said that the company hadn’t had any discussion about natural immunity or the nature of possible exemptions, that they took unilateral actions, threatened possible termination and that they needed to have negotiations with the union.
Southwest Airlines Pilots Union seeks a restraining order in an attempt to block the airline from carrying vaccine mandates forward
— Richard “Dick” Whitman (@DWhitmanBTC) October 8, 2021
American Airlines pilots have warned of a possible “staffing shortage” as well, which is why we reported they might be the next to have “issues” if they don’t work things out with their employees.
The Allied Pilots Association requested that American Airlines find “alternate means of compliance with the Executive Order be made available for professional pilots” so as not to prompt mass firings and unpaid leave following President Joe Biden’s September announcement mandating large employers to require vaccinations or weekly testing.
According to Reuters, there’s also a pending case from United Airlines. Six employees filed a class action in Texas claiming that those who were seeking exemptions from the vaccine mandate “were subjected to intrusive inquiries about their medical conditions or religious beliefs, including a requirement that they obtain letters from pastors.” That case is supposed to be heard today and the court restrained the airline from placing on unpaid leave any employee who receives religious or medical exemptions from the company for COVID-19 vaccinations. A temporary restraining order was also issued by the court to stop United from refusing any religious or medical exemption requests.
So we’ll have to see how it all shakes out but safe to say, prepare for possibly more “issues” coming.