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Hawaiian Airlines 'trying desperately' to avoid furloughing workers

Date: March 22, 2020


HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - With the slump in air travel, Hawaiian Airlines is in the same boat as almost every company in the nation taking a hit during these hard economic times.

At a press conference alongside Gov. Ige, Hawaiian Airlines President and CEO Peter Ingram said the airline was losing millions of dollars with their revenue virtually shrinking to zero.

“We have not furloughed anyone. We are doing everything we can to avoid furloughs,” Ingram said.

The company has offered voluntarily leave to their more than 7,000 workers statewide. The offer for voluntary leave includes a continuation of medical benefits and other incentives.

“We are trying desperately to avoid involuntary furloughs, but I can’t predict what the future will hold unfortunately,” Ingram added. “I wish I could have more confidence that we’d be able to avoid that in the long term, but this is a very uncertain situation."

Ingram also confirmed Saturday a Hawaiian Airlines employee tested positive for COVID-19.

The airlines sent out an internal email to its employees indicating the person infected is a flight attendant.

He said that case was unrelated to any of the previously positive cases from visitors on Hawaiian Airlines flights.

Gov. Ige’s mandate of a 14-day quarantine for inbound travelers to the state does not apply to flight crews including pilots and attendants. When asked why, state officials said the crews don’t stay long enough for concern, and quarantining them for a long period wold hurt company operations.

Flight attendants and pilots who arrive at an airport in Hawaii and wish leave the airport will be subject to a temperature screening.

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