Another Aussie airline mandates the COVID vaccine
As businesses ramp up efforts to encourage their staff to get vaccinated, another Australian airline has mandated the jab amongst its workforce
Virgin Australia announced on Monday that the COVID-19 vaccine would be mandated across its workforce.
The airline revealed that it is commencing consultation with unions and employees to require COVID-19 vaccination for all team members.
The company believes that mandating vaccination is the best way to protect the health and safety of the airline’s workforce and passengers.
A consultation process will commence shortly with relevant unions, employees and safety committees before Virgin Australia decides a final policy in September
Currently Virgin is proposing that all frontline team members be vaccinated by 15 November 2021, and all office-based team members by 31 March 2022.
The airline did confirm however that those with medical exemptions will be considered “on a case-by-case” basis.
Virgin Australia CEO Jayne Hrdlicka stated that recent events such as recent lockdowns in Australia, have demonstrated that it only takes one person to start an outbreak of COVID-19.
“We trust medical experts, their advice and the evidence that shows that vaccines save lives and reduce hospitalisation rates” the CEO said.
Virgin Australia will continue to assist employees with securing vaccination appointments and provide flexible working arrangements, so team members can receive their vaccinations.
A recent survey of Virgin Australia team members found that over 75 per cent of our frontline workforce have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, with another 9 per cent registered for vaccination.
When will airfares begin to fall?
As the global aviation market rebounds, airlines are changing their service offerings
Over 46 million workers in the global aviation sector lost their jobs as global aviation came to a grinding halt at the onset of the pandemic.
However, Geoffrey Thomas from AirlineRatings.com said passengers have returned to airport terminals and boarded flights in droves.
“When travelled returned, many of us wondered what sort of low airfares will we have to be charged to entice people back onto airplanes.”
In February 2023, total traffic (measured in revenue passenger kilometres) rose 55.5 per cent when compared to February 2022.
Globally, traffic is at 84.9 per cent of February 2019 levels.
“It was a stampede, the likes of which we have never seen before,” Mr Thomas said.
The worst of inflation could be behind us
The unprecedented nature of the pandemic continue to shape international fiscal policy
As reserve banks and federal reserves continue to battle the impacts of Covid-19, inflation has become a dominate issue.
In some parts of the world, rising household costs have slowed consumer spending by more than expected.
It means the end of aggressive rate hikes could come to an end in a matter of months.
In Australia, recent data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics confirmed inflation has passed its peak and is beginning to moderate.
The numbers show annual inflation peaked in December 2022 but will still remain higher for longer than anticipated.
Matt Grudnoff is a Senior Economist at The Australia Institute, who said these are uncharted waters.
“I don’t think they should be fully blamed.
“The pandemic was an entirely different kind of recession, one that we have never seen before.
“The world went into recession because the world shut down for very good health reasons.
“But the economy rebounded extremely quickly, simply because there was no underlying problem with the economy,” he said.
“I think there is a great risk”: will AI steal our jobs?
Artificial Intelligence has become an increasingly powerful and pervasive force in our modern world.
Artificial intelligence is not a new concept. However, the growing advancements have the potential to revolutionise industries, improve efficiency, and enhance the quality of life.
Along with its promising advancements, artificial intelligence also brings certain risks and challenges that must be acknowledged and addressed.
It has become the focus of lawmakers, who are working towards greater regulation of the sector.
U.S. and European Union officials recently met in Sweden to weigh up the benefits and challenges of artificial intelligence, and other emerging technologies.
“The AI process is creeping up on us,” said Dr Keith Suter, who is a global futurist.
“You’ve got competition between companies.”
It’s almost like some of us can see this raft that’s heading towards the rapids and a disappearance towards the waterfall, and we’re giving a warning but it’s not being heeded because everybody’s in this race to get down to the river,” Dr Suter said.
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