Alphabet Inc.’s Google has mandated its employees to comply with its COVID-19 vaccination policy or they will lose pay and then eventually get fired, according to internal documents obtained by CNBC.
In a memo circulated by top Google officials, the employees were given time until December 3rd to declare their vaccination status and upload documentation showing proof, or to apply for a medical or religious exemption.
After December 3rd, the company said that it would start contacting employees whose status wasn’t uploaded or were unvaccinated, and also those employees whose exemption requests weren’t approved.
As per the documents, employees who do not comply with the vaccination rules by January 18th will be placed on “paid administrative leave” for 30 days, followed by “unpaid personal leave” for up to six months, and then termination.
“If they’re still not in compliance after the 30 days, they could face unpaid leave for up to six months and then be terminated,” the memo read.
Google is doing this to ensure compliance of U.S. President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate, which has ordered companies with 100 or more employees to ensure each of their workers is fully vaccinated or regularly tested for COVID-19 by January 4th.
The policy will reportedly affect most U.S. employees that would have fallen under Biden’s vaccine requirements.
“We expect that almost all roles at Google in the US will fall within the scope of the executive order,” Google’s memo said. “Anyone entering a Google building must be fully vaccinated or have an approved accommodation that allows them to work or come onsite,” the company said, adding that “frequent testing is not a valid alternative to vaccination.”
A Google spokesperson has acknowledged the existence of the memo in a statement to The Verge, adding that, “As we’ve stated before, our vaccination requirements are one of the most important ways we can keep our workforce safe and keep our services running. We’re committed to doing everything possible to help our employees who can get vaccinated do so, and firmly stand behind our vaccination policy.”
Earlier this month, Google had announced its delay of return-to-office plans indefinitely for its employees amid Omicron variant fears. The company had previously asked the U.S. employees to return to the office from January 10, 2022 for about three days a week.