Southwest Airlines has decided to scrap a plan to put employees who applied for exemption from the vaccine mandate of the company on unpaid leave, if their case remains pending as at Dec. 8.
The company stated in an email that these employees will instead continue to work and must follow all social-distancing guidelines applicable while exemption requests are being reviewed.
The carrier stated that while we will grant any valid request for religious or medical accommodations, the company will allow employees enough time to get fully vaccinated, and continue to work as per safety protocols.
Southwest stated that the policy change was reported by CNBC for the first time last week.
Federal contracts require airlines to comply with the Biden administration's mandate that federal workers get vaccinated by December 8.
Southwest pilots are suing the company to stop its vaccine mandate.