American, Alaska Air will end pay protections for unvaccinated staff if they contract Covid

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American Airlines flight 718, the first U.S. Boeing 737 MAX commercial flight since regulators lifted a 20-month grounding in November, takes off from Miami, Florida, December 29, 2020.Marco Bello | ReutersAmerican Airlines and Alaska Airlines will no longer cover Covid-19 quarantine time for employees who aren't vaccinated against the virus, the latest push to get staff inoculated."Going forward, given there is an FDA-approved vaccine, pandemic leave will only be offered to team members who are fully vaccinated and who provide their vaccination card to us," American said in a staff memo Thursday. The change starts Oct. 1 and unvaccinated workers will have to use their sick time or medical leave if they miss work because of Covid.The similar policy at Alaska Airlines went into effect Aug. 30.Both airlines stopped short of instituting a vaccine mandate, like the one United Airlines announced last month, and the policy changes show diverging tactics among carriers in encouraging
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