United Airlines To Require Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination From New Hires

Kimberly Redmond  |

Image source: United Airlines

United Airlines Holdings Inc (NYSE: UAL) will start requiring new hires to show proof that they have been vaccinated against COVID-19, making it the second major US air carrier to implement such a policy.

Under the new mandate, external candidates with job offers made after June 15, 2021, must upload their vaccination card into United’s system within seven days of joining the company — unless they qualify for a religious or medical accommodation, CNBC reported Monday. 

In a company memo, the Chicago-based carrier said, “As we welcome new employees to the company, it’s important we instill in them United’s strong commitment to safety.”

United Airlines chief executive officer Scott Kirby has said he wants to make vaccines mandatory for employees, calling it the “right thing to do” not only for his airline but also for other companies.

“I don’t think United will get away with and can realistically be the only company that requires vaccines and makes them mandatory,” he said in January. “We need some others. We need some others to show leadership. Particularly in the healthcare industry.”  

United is not requiring current employees to get vaccinated at this time, though the airline has created incentives for employees, such as extra pay or time off, CNBC reported.

In May, Delta Air Lines became the first major US air carrier to implement a vaccination requirement for new hires.

According to ABC News, Delta said it will not put a company-wide requirement in effect for current employees but noted that more than 60% of its workers have already been vaccinated. 

American Airlines, however, said it has no plans to create a vaccine policy.

A company spokesperson told CBS News, “We are strongly encouraging team members to get vaccinated and offering an incentive for those who do, but we do not plan to require the vaccine unless it’s mandatory for entry into certain destinations.” 

CNBC noted that airlines have spent much of the past year trimming their workforces amid the pandemic, but many carriers have announced they are resuming hiring as travel demand picks back up. 

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Source: Equities News

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