United Airlines has expressed a neutral tone on the controversial decision of the U.S. Supreme Court today to overturn decades of abortion precedent in its Dobbs v. Jackson case.
United Airlines Addresses Supreme Court Dobbs Abortion Decision
A memo by Kate Gebo, the Executive Vice President of Human Resources and Labor Relations at United Airlines, strikes a decidedly neutral tone in urging employees to be “supportive and respectful” of one another on this issue, which elicits strong emotions from both foes and proponents of the right to abortion. It also notes that United’s medical plans will continue to offer abortion coverage.
The Supreme Court today issued an opinion that effectively overturns Roe v. Wade, a landmark 1973 decision which legalized abortion nationwide. As a result of today’s ruling, the legal status of abortion will now be left for individual states to decide.
You’ll likely be hearing and reading a lot more about this in the days and weeks ahead, but I wanted to make sure I shared two important things with you:
First, from a benefits perspective, our policies have not changed. Our medical plans have long provided access to reproductive health care. You can review the services provided by your health care plans and find contact information for additional questions at Your Benefits Resource.
Second, the topic of abortion rights is an emotional one and I’d expect today’s news to impact some members of our team differently than others. Being supportive and respectful are important parts of our culture at United – where ‘caring’ is second only to ‘safety’ among our core4 principles – so I ask that if you engage in conversations with your colleagues on this subject, please remember to do so with empathy and understanding. As always, if you need additional support, our Work/Life Solutions platform provides confidential guidance (including EAP) and Ginger, our mental healthcare app-based chat program, provides free, confidential access to a coach 24/7.
Days like today are a good reminder of the value of having a strong culture at United – our ability to be accepting of a wide range of opinions and beliefs is critical to our future success as an airline.
Thank you for all you do to take care of our customers and one another during this very busy summer season.
United argues that “our ability to be accepting of a wide range of opinions and beliefs is critical to our future success as an airline,” but I wonder how far that extends to other hot-button topics.
United Airlines has taken a cautious approach to the Dobbs decision, admonishing employees to respect diverse viewpoints amongst a workforce of over 80,000. At the same time, United has made clear it will continue to offer abortion coverage to its employees.
Has United Airlines taken the right approach to today’s breaking news from the U.S. Supreme Court?
> Read More: United Airlines CEO Wades Into Abortion Debate