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Report: United Airlines is Losing Millions By Keeping Unvaccinated Employees on Paid Leave

The airline loses about $700,000 a week by keeping its unvaccinated pilots on paid leave, according to court documents.


United Airlines loses about $700,000 a week by keeping its unvaccinated pilots on paid leave, according to court documents that were first reported on by Fox Business.

DANIEL SLIM | Getty Images

The airline filed the court documents on Oct. 22, arguing that the temporary restraining order placed on its vaccine mandate has forced it "to place unvaccinated pilots on paid leave, which costs approximately $1.4 million every two weeks."

Vaccinated pilots, the company said, "refuse to risk their safety flying with unvaccinated pilots."

In September, the company revealed it would place unvaccinated employees on unpaid leave. United told staffers that employees who had been granted exemption from mandatory staff vaccinations on religious grounds would now be put on temporary unpaid leave beginning in October, per an internal memo to employees obtained by Entrepreneur.

Six employees are suing the airline, saying that their requests for medical or religious exemption weren't honored and they were still placed on unpaid leave. A federal judge extended the ban on the airline's ability to put employees on unpaid leave for seeking a medical or religious exemption earlier this month. In a lawsuit, the plaintiffs requested a temporary restraining order against the mandate.

"For a number of our employees who were approved for an accommodation, we're working to put options in place that reduce the risk to their health and safety, including new testing regimens, temporary job reassignments and masking protocols," a United spokesperson told Fox Business.

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