United Airlines' parent

UAL

(UALAQ.OB)

confirmed a report that it will lay off 825 airport workers.

The airline will furlough 575 employees, according to Jean Medina, a United spokeswoman. The remainder of the workers will have opportunities to move to other locations or switch to part-time work, Medina said.

The employees are represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

United won't disclose cost savings resulting from the reductions.

The airline is seeking $725 million in labor cuts and the termination of its defined-benefit pension plans, saying they are necessary for it to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection at a time of high fuel costs, overcapacity and downward pressure on fares.

United, which filed for bankruptcy in December 2002, hopes to slash expenses and put itself on a better competitive footing vs. low-cost carriers like

Southwest Airlines

(LUV) - Get Report

and

JetBlue Airways

(JBLU) - Get Report

.