United losing $1.4M every two weeks by placing unvaccinated pilots on paid leave


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Vaccinated pilots refused to risk their safety, carrier said, flying with unvaccinated pilots

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United Airlines is losing more than a million dollars every two weeks to unvaccinated pilots on paid leave, according to court documents.

In court documents filed on October 22, the Chicago-based carrier argued that because of a temporary restraining order on its vaccine mandate, it has been “forced to put unvaccinated pilots on paid leave, costing every That’s about $1.4 million in two weeks.”


According to court documents, the carrier further explained that “vaccinated pilots in United’s workforce refuse to risk their safety with unvaccinated pilots.”

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UAL United Airlines Holdings, Inc. 46.79 +0.14 +0.30%
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Earlier this month, a federal judge banned carriers placing employees on unpaid leave to obtain medical or religious exemptions from the airline’s vaccine mandate. The order was in favor of six employees who are suing the airline, claiming it is discriminating against employees who receive exemptions by placing them on unpaid leave.

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As part of the airline’s broader policy, about 67,000 US-based employees faced a September 27 deadline to be vaccinated, or would be placed on unpaid leave until October 2. It made an exception for those for medical and religious reasons, which a handful of employees argue has not happened.

The plaintiffs in the case requested a temporary restraining order against the mandate in a lawsuit, arguing that United had failed to accept accommodation requests regarding the vaccine and instead sought to provide for those who did not wish to receive the vaccine. Six years unpaid leave is offered.

In court papers filed recently, United said it has already “already suffered irreparable damages” from the case.

However, United CEO Scott Kirby and President Brett Hart told employees in a joint memo in early October that in addition to those submitting for housing, more than 99% of their US-based employees have been vaccinated, since The airline has started its own policy. August 6.

“For the less than 1% of people who have decided not to be vaccinated, unfortunately, we will initiate the process of separation from the airline in accordance with our policy,” the memo read.

A United spokeswoman said the company was working with vaccine-free employees on safety measures including testing, face masks and temporary job reassignment.

“For many of our employees who were approved for housing, we are working to put in place options that minimize the risk to their health and safety, including new testing rules, temporary job reassignments and masking protocols. Including,” the spokesperson said.

Granthshala Business’ Audrey Conklin and

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