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Nearly 600 United Airlines employees are set to be fired for refusing the coronavirus vaccine, yet as far as anybody can tell, United CEO Scott Kirby seems awfully cheery about it.
Speaking on CNBC early Wednesday morning about the upcoming terminations, he seemed all smiles. His rhetoric seemed equally cheery, despite his claim that he “feels bad” for the workers.
“Well, look, I’m really proud and gratified that the United team, excluding the people that have applied for religious or medical accommodation, over 99 percent got vaccinated. It proves that vaccine mandates do work, and that you can get a huge percentage of your workforce vaccinated,” he said.
“I wish it had been 100 percent, but it was never going to be 100 percent. But I think 99 percent, we feel really good about. I feel bad for the 593 people, the less than one percent, that are going to leave,” he added.
Notice how he purposefully noted that the nearly 600 outgoing employees, all people with bills to pay and likely families to take care of, represent “less than one percent” of the United workforce.
Kirby then concluded his remark by gleefully celebrating that the airline was getting rid of old baggage and could “move forward.”
“We were focused on doing the right thing for United Airlines, and it’s great to have this in the rearview mirror for us and the ability to just move forward now,” he said.
United Airlines has been one of the more notably draconian airlines when it comes to COVID restrictions.
Last December, the airline booted a family off a flight because their 2-year-old toddler wouldn’t “comply” with the airline’s mask mandate.
“Today we got kicked off of a United flight going from Denver to Newark because our 2yo would not ‘comply’ and keep her mask on,” the mother wrote on Twitter at the time.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) December 13, 2020
Continuing the discussion on CNBC, interviewer Phil LeBeau pointed out that though United is allowing an exception for those with “a religious or medical exemption,” those who’ve been exempted won’t “be working the front line.”
“So you’re looking at about roughly three percent of your workforce who will not be on the job so to speak in the office or out at the airport, wherever it might be. Will there be any impact on your operations because of those jobs not being filled immediately?” he then asked.
Kirby claimed that no, there won’t be any impact …
“Absolutely not. There’s no impact. In fact, it’s quite the opposite at United Airlines. It’s such a small percentage, and we planned and prepared for this that we’re now able to, you know, confidently run a strong operation,” he said.
It’s not clear whether he also planned and prepared to be sued by six employees who’ve accused the airline of refusing to accept their vaccine exemption requests.
“We filed this lawsuit to protect the rights of honest, hardworking United Airlines employees who have religious or medical reasons not to receive the Covid-19 vaccine,” attorney Mark Paoletta announced on Fox Business Network last week.
“United has refused to grant any accommodations and these employees are scared by United’s draconian mandate that forces them to either get the vaccine or lose their job. That’s unacceptable in America,” he added.
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) September 23, 2021
“This is not about how effective the vaccines are or whether United may mandate vaccination. The fact is that some people have sincere religious objections to the Covid-19 vaccine, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 requires employers to respect and accommodate those beliefs. United has failed to do this,” Paoletta continued.
Kirby concluded his remarks on CNBC by claiming that United somehow has some hidden advantage over its competitors.
“I know other businesses, but also particularly other airlines, are really worried about what it means for their operations come Dec. 8th, and at United Airlines there’s no worry at all because we’ll have everyone that’s working at the airport already vaccinated,” he said.
Dec. 8th is the deadline for President Joe Biden’s widely panned, draconian business vaccine mandate. The mandate requires that businesses with 100+ employees either fire unvaccinated employees or subject them to weekly COVID tests.
Kirby, a veritable “RINO” who in 2016 donated to the campaigns of “RINOs” Jeff Flake and John Kasich, as well then-incumbent Florida Sen. Bill Nelson, a Democrat, has been an ardent supporter of the otherwise despised mandate.
This, incidentally, has made some in the public ardent opponents of him and his airline.
Look (*Language warning):
Being coerced to take an experimental jab to keep your job goes against everything America used to stand for.
Those terminated are Freedom Fighters.
— Mark Gonsalves (@MarkCongressGA7) September 29, 2021
@united hey kirby and your crappy airline, how dare you do this illegal bs?!?! It is literally illegal to do what you are doing. EVERYONE STOP FLYING WITH THESE CORRUPT ASSHOLES!!! NO MANDATES!!! FREEDOM OF CHOICE!!!!
— Jess (@Jess39473216) September 30, 2021
United Airlines bottomed out. They fired 600 unvaccinated employees. Fuck Kirby and @united for treating working class like a trash.
— Prinz Eugen 🦇 Plandemic 💉 Scamdemic (@PrinzEu29528267) September 30, 2021
For the 593 @united employees being fired..🖕🏼You Scott Kirby
— Brian🇺🇸🦅 (@Brian_waldoo) September 29, 2021
I wonder how Mr. Kirby would feel if the government mandated free flights on United Airlines? Remember, he said mandates work.
— Alan Powell (@Msgtpowell) September 29, 2021
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