Google has threatened to fire employees who have not been vaccinated


According to an internal memo obtained by CNBC, Google employees who haven't been vaccinated could be placed on forced leave and then fired if they don't follow the company's COVID-19 rules. Employees who would have been subject to President Biden's vaccine mandate, which is currently being challenged in the Senate and the courts, will reportedly be affected by the policy.

Google gave its employees until December 3rd to upload proof of vaccination or get approval for a medical or religious exemption, according to the memo. Anyone who fails to do either of these things by January 13th will be placed on a 30-day paid administrative leave, according to the company. According to CNBC, if they are still not in compliance after 30 days, they may be placed on unpaid leave for up to six months before being fired.

While the company expects the president's mandate to apply to the majority of employees, unvaccinated employees can look for positions that aren't covered by it, presumably ones outside of an office, according to the CNBC report. They'd have to be able to do the job remotely if they find one (or already have one). Google reportedly requires in-office employees to be vaccinated, claiming that frequent testing isn't an option. There's also the option of requesting a waiver.

Though the company hasn't said when employees will have to return to work after the emergence of the omicron variant, it does anticipate that a large portion of its workforce will be doing some work in person. According to CNBC, even remote workers will be required to be vaccinated if they are covered by the mandate.

Both pay and vaccination requirements have been contentious issues within the company; during a company all-hands meeting, executives were asked if they planned to raise wages to keep up with inflation (which they said they didn't). Last month, CNBC reported that Google had shared an anti-vaccine mandate manifesto signed by hundreds of employees.