Texas-based companies Southwest Airlines and American Airlines both said on Tuesday they would put in place COVID-19 vaccine requirements for their employees, defying a government order. Greg Abbott (R) banned all vaccine mandates – including those from private businesses.
Southwest CEO Gary Kelly told ABC News said early Tuesday that while he personally did not agree to mandate vaccines, his company would “do its best to comply” with President Biden’s order, which required companies to vaccinate their employees or lucrative federal contracts. There is a risk of losing.
The company—at the center of controversy over the mass cancellations of its flights over the weekend, the disruptions were rumored to be linked to internal vaccine protests—later said Businesshala In a statement it will comply with the federal order “as a federal contract to comply with.”
American Airlines, which is based in Fort Worth, Texas, and is the largest airline in the country, echoed that sentiment. Businesshala, said in a statement that it believes Biden’s mandate “supersede any conflicting state laws.”
American, Southwest and Government Abbott’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Businesshala.
172,000. It’s about how many people collectively work for American and Southwest Businesshala.
Although she did not elaborate on how this would be done, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said at a Tuesday afternoon press conference that the federal government intends to “implement” its order. She accused Texas and Florida, which have similarly banned vaccine mandates, of “putting politics ahead of public health”.
Abbott on Monday signed an executive order banning all vaccine mandates amid controversy over mass cancellations of flights at Southwest Airlines. While Southwest has repeatedly denied any connection, many began to speculate that the disruption was the result of internal protests against the company’s new vaccine mandate. The requirement had already stirred up internal protests, with the pilot union asking a court last Friday to block Southwest from implementing the mandate. However, Kelly reiterated Tuesday morning that the disruption was caused by a traffic management program put in place by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
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American and Southwest resistance sparked a potential legal battle in Texas. Republican-led states enacting these sweeping restrictions have already faced legal challenges, many of which the order eventually lapsed. In Florida, the state government has begun punishing those disobeying its orders, including in Leon County, which was paid $3.57 million to enforce a vaccine mandate by the administration of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. was said.
“Texas Gov. Abbott Restricts Covid Vaccine Mandate – Even for Private Businesses” (Businesshala)
“Southwest Airlines CEO insists on flight cancellations not linked to COVID vaccine protests” (Businesshala)