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Southwest Airline to avoid furloughs and layoffs through 2021 - CEO

Oct 5 (Reuters) - Southwest Airline plans to avoid furloughs and layoffs through 2021, Chief Executive Gary Kelly told employees on Monday.

The message was a shift from last week, when Kelly said the airline could be forced to follow rivals and lay off thousands of employees due to the coronavirus crisis in the absence of an extension of federal payroll aid, which lawmakers continue to negotiate in Washington. (Reporting by Tracy Rucinski in Chicago; additional reporting by Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)