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SWISS makes COVID-19 vaccination for crews mandatory

SWISS has announced that it is making COVID-19 vaccination mandatory for its entire flying personnel from mid-November onwards, which the airline says is for operational reasons and under its ‘duty of care towards its employees’.

Swiss International Airlines is making COVID-19 vaccination mandatory for all its flying personnel from 15th November onwards. The Zurich-airport based airline says that it is taking this action in response to national entry restrictions worldwide, which are seeing an increasing insistence on proof of such vaccination for air crews, too. One example in the SWISS network is Hong Kong, which is demanding proof of COVID-19 vaccination for crews arriving from certain countries, Switzerland included, with immediate effect.

A separate organizational management of vaccinated and unvaccinated crew members and the resulting increased complexity of the rostering involved would make it impossible to ensure continued robust and reliable flight operations in the longer term. This will result in the suspension of flights to some destinations which SWISS says will ‘seriously diminish the effectiveness of the SWISS hub system’. The separate handling of the two crew categories would also entail their unequal treatment in rostering terms.

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Additionally, SWISS states that:

As a globally operating airline, and given the sufficient availability of effective COVID vaccines, SWISS also wishes to perform to the full its duty of care towards its cockpit and cabin personnel.

Dieter Vranckx, CEO. SWISS, said:

We must initiate this action now if we are to continue to maintain our global route network and fulfil our care obligations towards our employees.

In adopting its new vaccination requirement, SWISS is supported by corresponding provisions in the collective labour agreements for its cockpit and its cabin personnel, which provide for such action under such conditions. SWISS is also conducting an open and transparent dialogue with its social partners on the mandate planned.

Recently, various airlines like Porter Airlines and Qantas have also made its mandatory for all employees to get vaccinated. Qantas is even rewarding its fully vaccinated frequent flyers in Australia.

Meanwhile, SWISS recently revealed its new Premium Economy Cabin.

Featured image by Wikimedia Commons

What do you think of SWISS’ decision to make COVID-19 vaccination for crews mandatory? Let me know in the comments section below.

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