Google gave employees until December 3rd to declare their COVID-19 vaccine status. And according to CNBC, if they failed to comply with the tech giant’s vaccine mandate, they’d have to apply for a medical or religious exemption and convince Google that it’s warranted if they don’t want to eventually lose their job. Google will approve exemptions on a case-by-case basis.
In its report, the publication said that it has seen an internal memo warning personnel of the consequences if they still haven’t complied with the company’s vaccine rules by January 18th. Those who refuse to be vaccinated or who have failed to secure a valid exemption will be placed on paid administrative leave for 30 days. Google will then put them on unpaid personal leave for up to six months and will ultimately fire them if they truly don’t want to be inoculated against COVID-19.
The tech giant reportedly explained in the memo that it’s implementing its vaccine mandate to comply with the administration’s executive order. Under that order, all US companies with more than 100 workers must be fully vaccinated by January 18th. While the order is in limbo after courts had blocked its implementation, Google may have simply chosen to push through with its plans to ensure that it’s compliant in case the order suddenly takes effect.
« We expect that almost all roles at Google in the US will fall within the scope of the executive order. Anyone entering a Google building must be fully vaccinated or have an approved accommodation that allows them to work or come onsite… frequent testing is not a valid alternative to vaccination, » the memo reportedly reads.
Earlier this month, CNBC also reported that Google delayed workers’ return to office and will no longer require personnel to come in a few times a week starting on January 10th. However, it still encouraged employees to come into the office « where conditions allow, to reconnect with colleagues in person and start regaining the muscle memory of being in [one] more regularly. »
While it will strictly enforce its rule for all employees that fall within the scope of the order, Google did give those who don’t want to get vaccinated an option. If they can’t secure a valid religious or medical exemption, they can « explore » other roles within the company that don’t conflict with the order. If they can find such a role and it doesn’t require in-office work, they can also permanently work remotely going forward.
All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.