Top Biden official held calls with airline executives to push for employee vaccine mandates
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Top Biden official held calls with airline executives to push for employee vaccine mandates

President Joe Biden’s Covid-19 response coordinator is having discussions with the leaders of several major airlines about vaccine requirements for employees, according to a source familiar with the talks.

Jeff Zients, the White House official leading the Biden administration’s response to the pandemic, has urged the CEOs to act sooner rather than later when it comes to mandating the vaccine for their workers, the source said.

Administration officials “have been extending their gratitude to airline executives for their commitment and actions to move on these requirements as quickly as they have,” the source added.

Reuters first reported on Friday that Zients had spoken to executives with American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines, urging them to enforce vaccine mandates for their employees ahead of forthcoming administration deadlines.

Over the weekend, American Airlines, Alaska Airlines and JetBlue announced they were joining United Airlines in mandating vaccines for employees and Southwest Airlines joined them on Monday. Delta Air Lines remains the biggest holdout.

This is a breaking story and will be updated.

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