Fewer Than 10 Employees Quit United Airlines Over Vaccine Mandate

Following United Airlines’ vaccine mandate, fewer than ten employees have resigned, said the company’s CEO, Scott Kirby. Additionally,…

Fewer Than 10 Employees Quit United Airlines Over Vaccine Mandate

Following United Airlines’ vaccine mandate, fewer than ten employees have resigned, said the company’s CEO, Scott Kirby. Additionally, more than 90% of the workers have shown the proof of their vaccination.

Only ten United Airlines’ employees have resigned due to the vaccine being mandatory. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

How many United employees have been vaccinated?

In August, United Airlines made headlines worldwide after stating that it would be mandatory for all employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. It was the first US major carrier to implement such a policy.

In a message to its employees, United Airlines said,

“This fall, every US-based United employee will be required to receive a COVID-19 vaccine… the latest potential deadline for meeting this requirement is October 25th.”

Now, Scott Kirby told CNN that about 90% of United’s employees are vaccinated. The company has approximately 67,000 employees.

Moreover, only ten have resigned following the vaccine mandate. Kirby added,

“In a large company, it’s a handful. The ones I’m aware of are in the single-digit number of people. We’re going to have more by the time it finishes, but it’s going to be a very low number of people.”

Regarding the remaining 10%, Kirby said he believes most of them have already gotten the vaccine. It is just a matter of time before they upload their verifications, he added. Every worker that uploads their proof of vaccination by September 20 is eligible for an additional day of pay.

UA B737-800
United Airlines believes 90% of its employees have received their vaccinations. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Domestic travel won’t require a vaccine mandate

Scott Kirby believes that getting as many people vaccinated as possible is the best way to end the pandemic. It is also the best strategy to get international air travel back on track.

However, United’s CEO doesn’t believe domestic travel in the United States requires obligatory vaccination, nor it would help to improve current vaccinated stats in the country. During its interview with CNN, he said,

“I don’t think mandating vaccination for air travel on its own will drive a huge increase in vaccination rates.”

Alaska Boeing 737 MAX
Worldwide each airline is taking a different approach regarding the vaccine. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

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What are other airlines doing?

Worldwide, several airlines have issued mandatory vaccines policies for their employees. In the US, the topic remains a controversial one. For instance, some carriers like Delta are not making it obligatory, but they will charge a US$200 extra a month to their non-vaccinated workers for health insurance.

Meanwhile, other carriers, like Alaska Airlines and Horizon are only requiring a mandatory vaccine for their new employees.

Elsewhere, Air Canada is one of the airlines that is mandating COVID-19 vaccinations for current and future employees. They have until October 30 to confirm their status with the carrier.

Virgin Australia is taking a similar approach. Under a proposed policy, Virgin Australia’s frontline members must have the vaccine by November 15; all office-based members by March 31, 2022.

Qantas’ CEO also wants the Australian Government to mandate and prioritize vaccinating aviation workers.

In Europe, carriers like airBaltic, Wizz Air, Lufthansa, and Swiss are among the ones that are requiring mandatory crew vaccinations.

Finally, in Latin America, only one airline has confirmed the vaccine will be mandatory for its employees: GOL Linhas Aereas in Brazil. Simple Flying reached LATAM, Avianca, Aeroméxico, Copa Airlines, Volaris, Viva Aerobus, Aerolíneas Argentinas, Azul, and GOL to confirm their current status on the subject.

What do you think? Should it be mandatory for airline’s employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19? Let us know in the comments.

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Rolls Royce’s All Electric Plane Completes Its First Flight

Rolls-Royce completed the first flight of its all-electric aircraft this week. The United Kingdom-based aerospace powerhouse shared on…

Rolls Royce’s All Electric Plane Completes Its First Flight

Rolls-Royce completed the first flight of its all-electric aircraft this week. The United Kingdom-based aerospace powerhouse shared on Thursday that ‘Spirit of Innovation’ hit the air backed by its 400kW (500+hp) electric powertrain.

Rolls-Royce has made an important step in its sustainability mission. Photo: Rolls-Royce

Great strides

The UK has been showing its determination to be a leader in electric air transport. Officials have launched numerous sustainability projects in a bid to develop cleaner forms of travel. For instance, it announced a £300 million (~$416 million) investment to develop greener air transport in 2019. It also has supported initiatives such as the ATI Programme, which is linked with promising developments such as Collins Aerospace’s 500-kilowatt electric motor.

Now, Rolls-Royce has been making significant progress in this field. The electric powertrain propelled its build with the most “power-dense battery pack ever assembled for an aircraft.”

Rolls-Royce Spirit
Rolls-Royce is looking to offer top speeds of over 300 mph (483 km/hr) with the Spirit of Innovation. Photo: Rolls-Royce

Plenty of support

The aircraft departed UK Ministry of Defence’s Boscombe Down site, providing a notable breakthrough for electric aviation. Major players across the wider industry and society have been keeping a close eye on these developments.

“The first flight of the ‘Spirit of Innovation’ is a great achievement for the ACCEL team and Rolls-Royce. We are focused on producing the technology breakthroughs society needs to decarbonise transport across air, land and sea, and capture the economic opportunity of the transition to net zero,” Rolls-Royce CEO Warren East shared in a statement.

“This is not only about breaking a world record; the advanced battery and propulsion technology developed for this programme has exciting applications for the Urban Air Mobility market and can help make ‘jet zero’ a reality.”

Meanwhile, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy of the United Kingdom Kwasi Kwarteng added that this first flight symbolizes a massive step in the right direction for cleaner air travel. He concluded that the UK is at the forefront of aerospace innovation and greener forms of transport amid projects such as Rolls-Royce’s.

Rolls-Royce Spirit Plane
With 6,000 battery cells on board, ACCEL (Accelerating the Electrification of Flight) has to be achieved through clever innovation. Photo: Rolls-Royce

Stay informed:  for our daily and weekly aviation news digests.

Ambitious targets

The aviation industry will undoubtedly look very different by the middle of this century. Several firms have been working intently on electric productions, including startup Faradair and its hybrid-electric plane that will switch from passenger to cargo in 15 minutes, and ZeroAvia with a refined focus looking at larger aircraft.

Overall, with programs such as Spirit of Innovation, Rolls-Royce hopes to reach net-zero operations by 2030 with its new products. Moreover, it wants all of its products to be compatible with net-zero by 2050.

It won’t be too long for the firm to see the fruits of its labor. It is working with the likes of Widerøe, to deliver an all-electric passenger aircraft ready for revenue flights in 2026.

What are your thoughts about Rolls-Royce’s all-electric aircraft taking to the skies for the very first time? What do you make of the prospects of the project? Let us know what you think of the program and its future in the comment section.

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