Dear Sisters and Brothers:
Yesterday, Southwest leadership met with all labor leaders for an update on the Vaccine Mandate Policy and the potential enforcement process. The company explained the accommodation procedures, as it is currently being considered by the carrier, and is urging employees to file requests for such exemptions. The company will actively engage in processing and approving the requests on an individual basis in a reasonable manner. Although Southwest Airlines is still in the process of determining what these accommodations will be, what is certain, unpaid leaves of absences and terminations are off the table.
It was further discussed that when an employee has submitted a request and awaiting the approval process, the employee can continue to work as normally scheduled. Once an approval has been granted and depending on the accommodation procedure, the employee will continue perform the work they are accommodated to perform without concern of violating the mandate.
This entire vaccine process will be updated regularly as things may change and we will continue to keep everyone posted on the latest events as they are known. We continue to encourage our members who can receive the vaccine to do so, but also believe it is a choice a person needs to make without fear of losing their livelihood. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we navigate through these very challenging times.
Sincerely and fraternally,