TAMPA (WFLA) – Southwest Airlines announced Monday that it will require its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19, in order for them “to continue employment with the airline.”
The carrier explained that its contracts with the federal government which them a government contractor, so it is covered by President Joe Biden’s order directing contractors to mandate vaccines for employees.
Employees of Southwest Airlines must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, or be approved for a religious, medical, or disability accommodation, by Dec. 8, 2021, to continue employment with the airline.
“Southwest Airlines must join our industry peers in complying with the federal government’s COVID-19 vaccination directive,” said Gary Kelly, Southwest Airlines Chairman and CEO. “I encourage all Southwest Employees to meet the federal directive, as quickly as possible, since we value every individual and want to ensure job security for all.”
The move follows a similar policy by United Airlines, which recently began the process of firing employees who refused to get vaccinated.