United Airlines has reportedly planned to furlough or cut up to 14,000 jobs as the carrier issues a second round of downsizing, US media reports have revealed.
“In a staff memo, United executives warned that it expects the recall will be ‘temporary,’ as travel demand remains depressed. The relief would cover employee payroll costs until March 31, 2021,” Reuters reported in December last year.
Further headaches were added after a memo revealed the extent of troubles within the company.
“The truth is, we just don’t see anything in the data that shows a huge difference in bookings over the next few months," a damning memo from United chief executive Scott Kirby and president Brett Hart.
The news comes as estimates from Bloomberg found "about 400,000 airline workers have been fired, furloughed or told they may lose their jobs" due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Kirby added in a statement in October last year that despite executing the company's initial crisis strategy, it would have to implement "extraordinary and often painful measures", citing plans to furlough 13,000 team members.
American Airlines added it would slash services in 15 markets across the US due to low passenger demand and expiring fund from the CARES Act, threatening 25,000 jobs. The Act was later extended to 31 March this year, CNBC reported.
But according to Forbes, United Airlines executives received massive compensation packages, with former chief executive Oscar Munoz earning $12.6m in 2019 and Kirby gaining $16.8m the same year, despite the looming threats.