WestJet will require all of its employees and new hires to be immunized against COVID-19.
The airline announced the policy on Wednesday, noting that “protecting the health and safety of our guests and employees remains our number one priority and vaccinations are our best line of defense.”
WestJet staff must report their vaccination status by September 24, and are required to be fully immunized by October 30.
Employees who fail to do so will face unpaid leave or termination of employment.
Additionally, full inoculation status will be an employment requirement for all future staff hired by WestJet.
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“Aviation has been one of the hardest hit industries,” said Mark Porter, WestJet Executive Vice-President of People, in a release, “and we believe requiring all WestJet Group employees to be vaccinated is the right thing to do and ensures the safest travel and work environment for everyone in WestJet’s world.”
“The WestJet Group remains committed to building back even stronger to ensure a competitive aviation industry in Canada,” continued Porter. “Requiring all employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 is essential to the safe restart of travel across Canada.”
Protecting the health and safety of our guests and WestJetters will always be our number one priority. Effective October 30, 2021, all WestJet Group employees will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19: https://t.co/tAWWLy2o9d pic.twitter.com/il84FL0Um5
— WestJet (@WestJet) September 8, 2021
As part of its vaccine mandate, WestJet will not be providing testing as an alternative to COVID-19 vaccination.
However, the airline will evaluate and accommodate employees who are unable to be vaccinated against the virus due to a medical condition or other exemptions.