United Airlines to Cut 16,000 Jobs Amid Pandemic-Induced Drop in Demand – Reports

WASHINGTON, September 2- United Airlines will cut more than 16,000 jobs as early as next month as government aid runs out amid the COVID-19 pandemic, CNBC reported on Wednesday. The move comes following massive layoffs announced by American Airlines. American Airlines said last week it expected to lay off another 19,000 employees, or about 14 percent of its…

WASHINGTON, September 2 (Sputnik) – United Airlines will cut more than 16,000 jobs as early as next month as government aid runs out amid the COVID-19 pandemic, CNBC reported on Wednesday.

The planned involuntary cuts of 16,370 jobs include 6,920 flight attendants, 2,850 pilots, 1,400 management jobs, 2,010 mechanics and 2,260 in airport operations, the network said. The move comes following massive layoffs announced by American Airlines.

The separations are defined as “furloughs” meaning employees can be called back if demand returns, and would make up close to 17 percent of United’s staffing level at the end of 2019.

“The pandemic has drawn us in deeper and lasted longer than almost any expert predicted, and in an environment where travel demand is so depressed, United cannot continue with staffing levels that significantly exceed the schedule we fly,” CNBC quoted a United employee memo as saying.

American Airlines said last week it expected to lay off another 19,000 employees, or about 14 percent of its workforce, by October when federal aid that protected those jobs expires and the COVID-19 continues to devastate air travel.

Aid for airlines and other sectors to hold on to their workers is running out as the Trump administration haggles with opposition Democrat lawmakers in Congress over the next COVID-19 relief bill. The Democrats want the administration to approve more than $2 trillion for the new relief, similar to what was passed in April. Republican lawmakers, meanwhile, say a new package of about $500 billion is just about right to meet immediate needs.

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