October 12, 2021


Gary Kelly, the CEO of Southwest, told employees last week that the airline had no choice but to comply with the regime’s vaccine mandate.

“Southwest Airlines is a federal contractor and we have no viable choice but to comply with the U.S. government mandate for employees to be vaccinated, and — like other airlines — we’re taking steps to comply,” Kelly said.

The pilot told American Greatness that the mandate did not sit well with him or his colleagues.

“This is a collection of very conservative white collar professionals that are very successful, and have done well,” he said. “You mandate a vaccine on them—and these aren’t necessarily people that are going to comply,” he explained, adding “to some extent they’re going to resist.”

He said that over the holiday weekend, Southwest probably saw a 20 percent increase in flights, and relied on the goodwill of pilots to fly those extra trips.

The way Southwest schedules these flights these days, he said, is they rely on a significant number of pilots to pick up an extra trip for time and a half overtime pay. That time and a half pay is usually enough of a enticement to draw the needed number of pilots to fly those trips, he said.

After the vaccine mandate, however, Southwest shouldn’t have expected any pilots to sign up for those extra flights, he said.

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