A Southwest Airlines jetliner takes off from Oakland International Airport, January 2020. Southwest Airlines is eyeing massive job cuts that could top 1,000 workers at the Oakland, San Jose, and San Francisco international airports due to brutal revenue losses unleashed by the coronavirus, official state labor filings show.
Southwest Airlines is eyeing massive furloughs that could top 1,000 workers at the Oakland, San Jose, and San Francisco international airports due to brutal revenue losses unleashed by the coronavirus, official state labor filings show.
Pilots, flight attendants, ramp agents, customer service workers, and freight agents could be furloughed or dismissed outright by Southwest Airlines by sometime in March, according to WARN letters filed with the state Employment Development Department.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has devastated domestic air travel and tourism,” Julie Weber, a Southwest Airlines executive, stated in the WARN letter sent to the EDD. “As a result, Southwest Airlines has lost billions of dollars in revenues since the pandemic began.”
Among the employment cutbacks being sketched out by Southwest Airlines in WARN notices:
— Oakland International Airport, 573 jobs.
— San Jose International Airport, 275 jobs.
— San Francisco International Airport, 158 jobs.
Plus, employment cutbacks are being eyed at several other California airports: Los Angeles International Airport, Hollywood Burbank Airport, Ontario International Airport, Sacramento International Airport, John Wayne Airport in Orange County, and Long Beach/Daughtry Field.
Southwest Airlines said it’s attempting to strike a deal with multiple unions for cost-cutting measures.
“Southwest must unfortunately involuntarily furlough pilots, flight attendants, customer service agents, and ramp agents, operations agents, provisioning agents, and freight agents nationwide to further reduce our costs,” Southwest Airlines stated in the WARN letter.
It wasn’t immediately clear how long the cutbacks might last.
“Although we cannot predict with any certainty, based on the best information available to Southwest at this time, we expect that this furlough will last more than six months but will be temporary,” Southwest told the EDD.