United pilot Sherry Walker says she is on indefinite unpaid leave over her religious-based vaccine refusal
A United Airlines pilot who refuses to get vaccinated for COVID-19 has claimed that she is on unpaid leave and unable to seek another job due to the company's strict non-compete clause.
Sherry Walker, 53, the co-founder of advocacy group Airline Employees for Health Freedom, spoke out during a protest against vaccine mandates on Sunday in Washington, D.C.
'I am out on unpaid leave. I am prohibited from getting another job. I'm prohibited from accessing my 401(k). I have no medical benefits, and I'm leading the charge in this fight, so my days are consumed,' Walker told the Daily Signal at the demonstration.
When reached by DailyMail.com, a spokesperson for United declined to comment on Walker's situation.
The airline says that about 2,000 employees were granted medical or religious accommodations during the vaccine rollout, and that workers with the exemptions had the option of continuing to work in a non-customer-facing role.
The company says that only those workers who refused the reassignment were placed on unpaid leave, and that it is working to return them to active status as the overall situation with the pandemic allows.
Walker, the co-founder of advocacy group Airline Employees for Health Freedom, spoke out during a protest against vaccine mandates on Sunday in Washington DC
'We know that the best way to keep everyone as safe as we can is for everyone to get vaccinated, as nearly all United employees have chosen to do,' United said in a statement.
'We have identified non-customer facing roles where accommodated employees can apply and continue working until it is safe for them to their return to their current positions.'
Walker, who could not be immediately reached by DailyMail.com on Wednesday, told Fox Business that she has been prohibited from finding outside work by United's non-compete contracts.
'In this case, they have said that no, no outside employment. In fact, you must go through ethics and compliance, and it can't be a company that we could have … a non-compete' with, she said.
Walker said she is considered an 'active employee' after being put on unpaid leave for not complying with the airline's vaccine mandate in November.
'That means that they can call us back with two weeks' notice at any given time, they can just grab us and pull us back. But because we're active, we haven't had a qualified lifestyle change,' she said.
'So Schwab, which owns our 401(k) accounts, refuses to let anyone