Virgin Atlantic requires new flight crew to be fully vaccinated

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Virgin Atlantic has announced it will not hire new cabin crew or pilots who are not fully vaccinated against coronavirus.

Getting jabbed is also strongly encouraged for existing staff but is not compulsory.

A spokeswoman for Virgin Atlantic explained that the policy was introduced “to protect our flying programme, alongside the significant benefits to public health”.

She went on: “To ensure the continued health, safety and protection of our customers and people and to take advantage of the benefits of the UK’s world-leading vaccination programme, we will require any cabin crew or pilots joining the business to be vaccinated.

“This is in line with other global airlines, including our partners at Delta.”

She noted that fully vaccinated UK travellers will be permitted to enter the US from November, while destinations such as Hong Kong and Pakistan require crews to have had both doses of a coronavirus jab.

“We know vaccination is the best way out of this pandemic and appreciate that the vaccination level of our workforce is very high,” the spokeswoman added.

“We’re committed to ensuring our customers and our teams fly safe and well and look forward to welcoming more of our pilots and cabin crew back to the skies.”

Earlier this month Hungarian carrier Wizz Air, which serves 11 UK airports, said it will require its flight crews to be vaccinated by December.

British Airways has taken the position that getting vaccinated is a personal choice for its staff.

EasyJet is encouraging its flight crews to have jabs, but the budget carrier is not ordering them to do so.

From November 11, all staff in registered care homes in England must be vaccinated unless they are medically exempt.

Conciliation service Acas says there is no other UK law that requires people to have the vaccine “even if an employer would prefer someone to have it”.

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