Google COVID-19 Vaccine Rule: Leaked Memo Warns Termination for Unvaccinated Employees

Google COVID-19 Vaccine Rule: Leaked Memo Warns Termination for Unvaccinated Employees
Google has implemented a strict policy for employees to receive mandatory COVID-19 vaccine shots, a leaked memo showed. Photo : KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images

Google has implemented a strict policy for employees to receive mandatory COVID-19 vaccine shots, a leaked memo showed.

The tech giant informed employees through a leaked internal memo that if they choose not to comply with its COVID-19 vaccination policy, they will receive pay cuts and eventually lose their jobs, CNBC reported.

The memo showed that all employees had until December 3 to issue the declarations of their vaccination status and upload official documentation as proof, or apply for an exemption for medical or religious reasons. After that date, Google started contacting employees who failed to comply with the order and had their exemption requests disapproved.

Google COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate: Employees Must Fully Comply By January 18

The internal document said that if employees failed to comply by a deadline scheduled for January 18, 2022, they will be placed on "paid administrative leave" for 30 days. If they still are not vaccinated in that duration, Google will put them on "unpaid personal leave" for up to six months before they would be set for termination.

Google stressed that it is fully supporting the vaccination policy, which it said is an important move to "keep our workforce safe and keep our services running."

Read Also: Omicron Variant in the US: COVID-19 Variant Spread Tracker, Live Updates, Vaccination Rate

While a majority of tech businesses have delayed return-to-work plans, the large and small to medium-sized businesses are preparing for flexible set-ups. Google is set to require its workforce to report for in-person work at its offices three times a week by next year. Because of this, it is urging its employees to get their vaccines, which are widely available in the U.S.

Google planned to have employees return to its offices by January 2022, but the target has been pushed back due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 Omicron variant, TheStreet revealed.

Such companies as Microsoft, General Motors and Goldman Sachs have all obligated their employees to receive COVID-19 vaccines, and a few have still to commit to firing workers who refuse to follow vaccination policies, the report added.

The U.S. government has mandated companies with at least 100 employees to guarantee that their workers are fully vaccinated, or regularly tested for COVID-19 by January 18. A federal court, however, ordered a halt to these efforts of U.S. President Joe Biden's administration.

Google Firm in Supporting Vaccination Efforts

Despite this, Google still told its 150,000 workers to upload their vaccination status to their corporate servers, regardless of whether they plan to report to work in the office or not.

The company indicated that anyone who enters Google facilities "must be fully vaccinated" or are officially authorized to work onsite. It emphasized that continuous testing is "not a valid alternative to vaccination."

Google parent firm Alphabet, Inc. has been consistent in supporting vaccine use since July.

CEO Sundar Pichai had indicated in July that the company will require employees to be vaccinated when they return to offices.

Related Article: Google Gives Free Weekly PCR-Based Swab COVID-19 Test to Employees

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