Alphabet.Inc has announced that it will take stringent action against employees who are unvaccinated or not willing to take vaccines in a new memo issued to Google employees. Employees had until December 3 to declare their vaccination status along with providing documents as proof before action was taken CNBC reported on Tuesday.
After December 3, Google said it would start contacting employees who had not uploaded their status or were unvaccinated and those whose exemption requests were not approved, CNBC reported. Employees who did not comply with the norms would face loss of pay and if no action was taken, eventual termination, the memo said.
If there was no clear exemption documentation provided from the employee's side after January 18, the first step would be putting them on "paid administrative leave" for 30 days, CNBC reported, followed by "unpaid personal leave" for up to six months and termination.
Google had delayed its plans to re-open offices due to the emergence of the Omicron variant and widespread resistance of employees to mandatory vaccinations which forced it to scrap plans for a three-day work from office week from January 10.
The Biden administration has ordered U.S. companies with 100 or more workers to ensure their employees are fully vaccinated or regularly tested for Covid-19 by Jan. 18. A federal court issued a stay on the order in early November, putting a halt to the administration's efforts. Nevertheless, Google seems intent on following that mandate as it has asked 150,000 employees to upload vaccination data into their database.
"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."
For anyone who is unwilling to comply, Google had earlier said they would be offered the option to explore roles that didn't conflict with their personal beliefs and the company's stance on vaccines. It would also consider religious exemptions on a case by case basis, Google said.