Delta Air Lines’ Decision To Fine Unvaccinated Employees $200 Each Month Is Sparking Some Strong Opinions [Photos + Video]

Delta Airlines announced earlier today that it would begin fining employees who are unvaccinated, becoming the first U.S. company to use a monetary penalty to encourage immunization.

via: The Hill

In a memo Wednesday, Delta CEO Ed Bastian announced unvaccinated employees on the company’s health care plan will have to pay a $200 monthly surcharge beginning Nov. 1.

“The average hospital stay for COVID-19 has cost Delta $50,000 per person,” Bastian wrote.

“In recent weeks since the rise of the B.1.617.2 variant, all Delta employees who have been hospitalized with COVID were not fully vaccinated,” he said.

Unvaccinated employees are now required to wear masks indoors and will face weekly testing beginning Sept. 12. On Sept. 30, the company’s pay protection program will only apply to breakthrough cases.

Bastian said 75 percent of Delta employees have already been vaccinated against the virus.

The move comes as the full federal approval of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine Monday led to new vaccination mandates by government entities like the military, and private businesses are expected to follow suit.

Following approval of the vaccine, President Biden urged the private sector to ramp up requirements that would result in the vaccination of millions more people as cases are once again surging across the country.

Naturally, people had opinions. More than a few questioned Delta’s ability to penalize workers for their personal health choices:

Others applauded the company for making an effort to improve vaccination rates among its employees (currently around 75% of Delta employees are vaccinated.)

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