CUPERTINO: Google and Facebook will require employees returning to offices to be vaccinated against Covid-19, the companies have said in separate announcements.
“Anyone coming to work on our campuses will need to be vaccinated. We’re rolling this policy out in the US in the coming weeks and will expand to other regions in the coming months,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in a memo, adding that “getting vaccinated is one of the most important ways to keep ourselves and our communities healthy in the months ahead.”
A few hours after Google’s memo was released, Facebook made a similar announcement.
“As our offices reopen, we will be requiring anyone coming to work at any of our US campuses to be vaccinated,” Lori Goler, Facebook’s vice president of people, said. “How we implement this policy will depend on local conditions and regulations. We will have a process for those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons and will be evaluating our approach in other regions as the situation evolves. We continue to work with experts to ensure our return to office plans prioritise everyone’s health and safety.”
Pichai also said Google is extending its work-from-home policy for all of its offices globally until October 18. The company previously planned to reopen its offices for employees in mid-September. Pichai’s note said if Google does plan to change course again, it will notify employees at least 30 days before its offices are fully reopened.
In the spring, Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon started rolling out their return-to-office plans which largely involved a hybrid approach — three days of work in the office and two at home, starting for most employees in the fall.
For the most part, wearing masks was not going to be a requirement for vaccinated in-office workers at most companies, and getting vaccines was not mandated. Now the companies’ plans appear to be going through another round of revisions.