America’s transport networks, already under strain, are allegedly being pushed to breaking-point by a backlash against the Biden administration’s vaccine mandates. Because airlines, for instance, are paid under federal contracts, they are subject to President Joe Biden’s order that federal contractors are required to have employees vaccinated.
Pilots and air traffic controllers are allegedly retaliating by simply not showing up for work.
Southwest Airlines canceled hundreds more flights Monday following a weekend of major service disruptions.
By late morning Monday, Southwest had canceled about 365 flights — 10% of its schedule for the day — and more than 600 others were delayed.
Airline management are blaming the cancellations on air traffic control “issues” (ironically, alleged to be a similar campaign by air traffic controllers) and bad weather. However, the Federal Aviation Administration reports that Southwest was the only airline to report so many cancelled and delayed flights over the weekend. The FAA also denies that the cancellations were related to vaccine mandates.
The widespread disruptions began shortly after the union for its pilots asked a federal court to block the airline’s order that all employees get vaccinated against COVID-19. The union said it doesn’t oppose vaccination, but it argued in a filing Friday that Southwest must negotiate before taking such a step.
At the same time, the union is denying that pilots are conducting a “sickout” (mass calling in sick, rather than actually striking) in protest at the vaccine mandate. Certainly, Southwest has struggled over the northern summer with high numbers of delayed and cancelled flights.
But some are claiming that the vaccine mandate has pushed airline employees over the edge.
The White House has pushed airlines to adopt vaccine mandates because they get paid under federal contracts, making them subject to President Joe Biden’s order that federal contractors require vaccination among employees.
United Airlines was the first major U.S. carrier to announce a vaccination requirement. Southwest had remained silent even after Biden announced his order for federal contractors and large employers. Finally last week Southwest told employees they must be fully vaccinated by Dec. 8 to keep their jobs.GOPUSA
Contrary to official denials, Fox News’ Tucker Carlson and Texas Republican senator Ted Cruz are adamant that the vaccine mandate is to blame. Cruz tweeted, “Joe Biden’s illegal vaccine mandate at work! Suddenly, we’re short on pilots & air traffic controllers”. Carlson stated that, “this weekend, in protest, large numbers of Southwest pilots called out sick and they effectively shut down their airline”.
At the same time, Amtrak crews are said to be joining “the protest started by Air Traffic Controllers and Southwest pilots and employees”. American Airlines crews, the same sources claim, will also be joining in soon.
Teachers in New York are also protesting vaccine mandates, despite complying with them in order to keep their jobs.
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