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United Says They Need “A Lot More People” To Leave The Airline

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United Says They Need “A Lot More People” To Leave The Airline

In an email, sent 48 hours before a June 18 deadline to accept exit packages, United said that although “thousands” have signed up for the voluntary exit package so far, the number is not enough. United extended the deadline to July 8.

U.S. airlines cannot force any furloughs or layoffs before Oct. 1 under the terms of a government stimulus package that awarded money for employee payroll through September. But many, including United, are trying to induce staff to depart sooner, warning that airlines must shrink in the fall.

“While we’re seeing some glimmers of hope in the number of customers traveling, we know that we are still a very long way from returning to where demand was at the end of 2019,” United said in the email, adding that a quick recovery was unlikely.

Under the new deal offered to sway more to exit, frontline employees would receive a $1,500 health credit – to pay for health care, including prescriptions – for every year worked, up to $45,000. The credits would be in addition to other medical, retirement and travel benefits already offered.

The company has offered a number of exit packages to union employees based on factors like seniority, age and workgroup, as well as to management and administrative staff, which it is aiming to reduce by 30%.

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