Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL) on Wednesday announced changes to its employee vaccination policy. As per the new policy, airline workers must get themselves vaccinated or pay $200 extra a month for health insurance.
The company also said that unvaccinated employees would be required to to undergo a COVID test every week till the cases stabilize. Any employee who tests positive must isolate and take the required next steps.
The airline said that November 1 onwards, employees who are not fully vaccinated will have to pay an extra $200 monthly surcharge for its account-based healthcare plan. In the last few weeks, all airline workers who tested positive for Covid had not been vaccinated, which cost the company an average of $50,000 per person.
Starting September 30, the airlines’ COVID-19 pay protection will only cover fully vaccinated employees experiencing a breakthrough case. This is in line with local and state laws and Wednesday onwards, all unvaccinated employees would need to wear masks in all indoor Delta facilities.
Since May 2021, the airline had made it mandatory for all new employees to get vaccinated before beginning work, even though there was no such rule for current employees. With the Delta variant now spreading fast, the airline wants all its employees to get the vaccine.
In addition to fully vaccinating three-quarters of its workforce, Delta has made significant efforts to support its local community amid the Covid crisis. In partnership with Georgia state, the airline has given more than 115,000 doses to residents at its Delta Flight Museum in Atlanta, making it the largest mass vaccination site in the state.
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