Southwest Airlines to require employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19

ORLANDO, Fla. — Orlando International Airport’s busiest airline is requiring all employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The company said employees will need to show proof of being vaccinated by Dec. 8 to continue working for the airline.


Eligible employees can be approved for a religious, medical or disability exemption.

READ: United Airlines say 97% of US employees have been vaccinated

“Southwest Airlines must join our industry peers in complying with the federal government’s COVID-19 vaccination directive,” said Gary Kelly, Southwest Airlines chairman and CEO. “I encourage all Southwest Employees to meet the federal directive, as quickly as possible, since we value every individual and want to ensure job security for all.”

Southwest is the latest airline to mandate the COVID-19 vaccination for employees.

READ: Video shows unruly passenger growling, shouting at flight attendants

Jet Blue, American Airlines, United Airlines and Alaskan Air have all announced similar vaccination requirements.

Delta is the last of the major airline carriers not to require employee vaccinations.

READ: Delta Airlines has more than 1,600 on internal no-fly list, submitted 600 names to FAA

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Katlyn Brieskorn, WFTV.com

Katlyn Brieskorn is a Digital Assignment Editor at WFTV. She joined Channel 9 in July 2019.