Airline passengers react to possible COVID-19 vaccination requirement

Coronavirus

CHARLOTTE (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — Thousands of passengers are taking to the skies ahead of another busy travel weekend. But those numbers could drop significantly if a Biden administration proposal becomes a reality.

Tuesday, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Chief Medical Advisor to the Biden administration explained in an interview with MSNBC that he’s behind a prohibition of air travel for unvaccinated individuals.

“I’m not proposing it, but if the president decided all other things considered in that decision — I would support that,” said Dr. Fauci.

At Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, the answers varied when passengers were asked about the requirement to be vaccinated. One traveler told WFLA’s sister station WJZY that he didn’t believe a requirement was fair.

“I think, as humans we have a choice of how we want to treat our bodies and what decisions we want to take. So if you decided to cover myself and I decide not to — that’s your decision and mine.”

A traveling doctor who spoke with WJZY said he’s seen the horrors of the virus up close and that the vaccine is doing its job in our communities.

“The unvaccinated people are getting sick, even the vaccinated people are catching the delta variant, they just aren’t getting as sick. I’ve always said that science will win the day. So I’m a big supporter. I’m up for the booster whenever it’s available too.”

If the proposed mandate goes into effect, it could prohibit small children and those medically unable to take the vaccine from flying.

Aside from possibly requiring vaccinations for passengers, industry chatter has centered around which airline will require vaccinations for employees. United, Frontier, Hawaiian, and Air Canada are the only North American carriers to require the jab.

All other airlines are making it optional with heavy incentives or penalties such as Delta Airlines, charging $200 extra on employee insurance premiums for those who refuse the vaccine. The airline said employee vaccination rates greatly increased after the levy was imposed.

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