Judge rejects challenge to Southwest's vaccine mandate

DALLAS - A federal judge has rejected a bid by pilots to block Southwest Airlines from imposing a vaccine mandate, saying the airline is within its power to require vaccination as a safety measure.

U.S. District Judge Barbara Lynn denied the request by the airline's pilot union to issue a temporary restraining order against the airline's requirement.

The judge said Tuesday that Southwest is within its authority to require vaccinations to improve safety and maintain its operations.

Southwest Airlines asked its employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to comply with a Biden administration requirement for federal contractors including airlines that have contracts with the government.