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The Southwest Airlines Pilots Association (SWAPA) has asked a federal court in Texas for a temporary restraining order preventing the airline from implementing its COVID-19 vaccine mandate for employees on Nov.

SWAPA, which represents approximately 9,000 Southwest Airlines pilots, filed a lawsuit On 30 August, it claimed that South-West had unilaterally made changes violating the “status quo” provision of the Railway Labor Act (RLA) by not maintaining the terms of the existing contract during the negotiations, which has been made by airlines and unions. controls the relationship between

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In addition to requiring vaccinations, SWAPA is looking to block quarantine rules for pilots and an infectious disease control policy, which it argues has “changed substantially the working conditions, rules and rates for pay for pilots”. “, until both sides can’t reach. a resolution.

Southwest’s vaccine mandate comes in response to an executive order signed by President Biden that requires employees of all federal contractors to be fully vaccinated by Dec.

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“The order that Swappa seeks is extraordinary,” said Southwest legal filing Saturday.

The airline argues that an approved injunction “would put SWA’s business, employees and customers at risk as SWA would be forced to withdraw basic CDC guidance and policies implementing quarantine protocols.” It also says the move would threaten its contracts with the federal government, its largest single customer, causing “substantial harm” to Southwest’s business and all of its employees, including pilots represented by SWAPA. Huh.

The air carrier noted that the court does not have jurisdiction as the issue constitutes a “minor dispute” under the RLA that can be resolved through binding arbitration rather than a negotiated process that would take years to resolve. can. It also emphasized that the union is in talks with SWAPA to establish a process for pilots to request religious or medical exemptions from the mandate.

“SWA has taken unilateral action when necessary to respond to the circumstances of the pandemic or EO’s mandate, but SWA still engaged with SWA in a good effort to resolve disputes and adjust its policies as such.” that would be acceptable to SWAPA and its members,” Southwest said.

anchorthe protectionThe lastChangeChange %
LUVSouthwest Airlines Company49.80-0.55-1.08%

A representative for SWAPA declined to comment on Southwest’s latest filing when contacted by Granthshala Business. A hearing on the union’s request for a temporary stay order has been scheduled for October 22.

The controversy comes after thousands of flights were canceled last week due to disruptions attributed by the airline to weather and air traffic control issues. In response, Southwest issued an LUV voucher, which could be applied to future Southwest travel.

That’s also ahead of Southwest’s third-quarter earnings report on Thursday.

In addition to previously asking for clarity on the company’s COVID-19 protocols, SWAPA has raised concerns over scheduling issues and the lack of availability of hotels and food. The Sangh had said in August that it was considering holding several sit-ins in the fourth quarter if the issues were not resolved.