“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on travel demand and our business,” Kate Gebo, vice president of human resources and labor relations, wrote in a letter to EDD.
United Airlines had warned in recent days that it may have to lay off 36,000 employees from its 96,000 workforce after coronavirus fears and restrictions drove countless travelers away.
The airline has blamed the layoffs in part on closures and warrants ordered by federal, state and local governments.
“Government restrictions on travel, stay-at-home orders, and the lack of a medical solution to the virus have all but crippled travel reservations and demand,” Gebo wrote.
In California, including job cuts at San Francisco International Airport, United Airlines plans to lay off 8,400 workers.
The Bay Area holiday is expected to take place by October 1, the official WARN notice revealed.
United Airlines officials said the holidays detailed in the notice should be viewed as a cap number, not the actual total of job losses.
“We plan to offset these numbers through increased participation in new and existing voluntary programs as well as ongoing discussions with our union partners on creative ways to help reduce time off,” said Annabelle Cottee, senior director of communications on the west coast at United Airlines.
In Southern California, United Airlines plans to temporarily lay off 1,634 workers at Los Angeles International Airport, 149 at San Diego International Airport and 65 at John Wayne Airport in Orange County.
Other notable layoff plans revealed in the Bay Area: Andro’s Rostilj, a South Bay-based meal provider for Bay Area businesses, revealed he has initiated temporary layoffs than 221 workers in Campbell.
Even with United Airlines’ revelations of thousands of layoffs at the San Francisco airport, projected Bay Area job cuts for the first half of July are slightly below totals for the first half of April, May and June.
During the first two weeks of July, employers in the Bay Area warned EDD that they were planning job cuts totaling just over 13,000 positions.
The opinions posted by companies do not give a complete picture of the employment situation in the Bay region. The filings do not give any information on hiring by companies and do not detail all the job cuts in the region. The notices serve primarily to indicate the pace of job cuts in the region and to outline details of local staff cuts.
United Airlines has hinted that some of the job cuts may become permanent – even though notices for California and San Francisco Airport officially list the job cuts as “temporary.”
“The COVID-19 pandemic,” United Airlines said in the WARN advisory, “will make us a smaller airline”.