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Delta CEO says 8,000 staff have examined optimistic for Covid in final 4 weeks

A Delta Air Strains worker works on the departures stage at Los Angeles Worldwide Airport (LAX) on August 25, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.

Mario Tama | Getty Photographs

Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian stated about 8,000 of its 75,000 staff examined optimistic for Covid-19 over the past 4 weeks, absences that marred the corporate’s monetary outcomes throughout a busy vacation journey season.

Delta reported a loss for the quarter and forecast one other for the primary three months of the 12 months due to the fast-spreading omicron variant, however predicted journey would start to rebound once more in late February.

A sequence of winter storms and airline crews sidelined by omicron infections contributed to greater than 20,000 U.S. flight cancellations industrywide between Christmas Eve and the primary week of January. United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby on Monday stated 3,000 of its near 70,000 U.S. staff have been optimistic for Covid.

Flight cancellations have eased considerably up to now few days. Delta stated that its operation has since stabilized and that 1% of its flights have been canceled over the previous week due to omicron.

The staff who examined optimistic had “no vital well being points,” Bastian stated in an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box” after releasing quarterly outcomes.

Delta late final 12 months up to date its sick depart coverage for workers who check optimistic for Covid-19, offering them 5 days of pay, exterior of sick banks, and a further two days in the event that they check optimistic on the fifth day. Beforehand workers had 10 days of paid depart for Covid infections except for common sick days. That got here after the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention up to date its tips for Covid quarantining, halving its advice to 5 days.

Delta and different airways had urged the CDC to make the change.

The biggest U.S. flight attendants union criticized Delta’s coverage. Sara Nelson, president of the Affiliation of Flight Attendants, tweeted final week that Delta “is telling employees throughout work teams that they need to come to work w/ signs even when somebody within the family examined optimistic.” She additionally stated that optimistic employees have been advised to “come to work after 5 days if the fever is under 100.9, even when nonetheless testing optimistic.”

Delta issued a cease-and-desist letter to the union over its president’s feedback. The union is attempting to prepare the airline’s flight attendants, one of many final nonunion flight attendant teams within the U.S.

Bastian defended the coverage and stated it was primarily based on CDC steering.

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