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Facebook becomes second big tech company after Google to require US workers to be vaccinated office

'How we implement this policy will depend on local conditions and regulations. We will have a process for those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons and will be evaluating our approach in other regions as the situation evolves,' Lori Goler, Facebook's vice president of people, wrote in a statement on Wednesday afternoon. 

Around half of the social media platform's 58,000 employees are expected to be working remotely when the offices open in October. 

Earlier in the day, Google also said it was mandating its employees get vaccinated against COVID-19 when they return to campuses beginning in mid-October. 

The date was delayed by a month due to the surge in cases nationwide fueled by the Indian Delta variant, the company announced.

Facebook will require employees to be vaccinated before returning to the office

Facebook revealed on Wednesday afternoon that US workers returning to the office will need to have been vaccinated

In a Wednesday email sent to Google's more than 130,000 employees, CEO Sundar Pichai said the company is now aiming to have most of its workforce back to its offices beginning October 18 instead of its previous target date of September 1. 

The decision also affects tens of thousands of contractors who Google intends to continue to pay while access to its campuses remains limited.

'This extension will allow us time to ramp back into work while providing flexibility for those who need it,' Pichai wrote.

And Pichai disclosed that once offices are fully reopened, everyone working there will have to be vaccinated. 

Google on Wednesday informed its more than 130,000 employees that they would all be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19 when they return to the office in mid-October. The image above shows Google's Mountain View, California headquarters

The requirement will be first imposed at Google's Mountain View, California headquarters and other US offices before being extended to the more than 40 other countries where Google operates.

The vaccine mandate will be adjusted to adhere to the laws and regulators of each location, Pichai wrote, and exceptions will be made for medical and other 'protected' reasons.

'Getting vaccinated is one of the most important ways to keep ourselves and our communities healthy in the months ahead,' Pichai explained.

Google's decision to require vaccines to be in the office comes on the heels of similar moves affecting hundreds of thousands government workers in California and New York as part of stepped-up measures to fight the Indian Delta variant.

Other major tech companies including Apple and Amazon have so far not mandated vaccines in order to return to work.

Microsoft said it will not require workers to be vaccinated in order to come in to work, although company officials are recommending employees receive the shot. 

The rapid rise in cases during the past month has prompted more public health officials to urge stricter measures to help overcome vaccine skepticism and misinformation.

The vaccine requirement rolling out in California next month covers more than 240,000 government employees. 

The city and county of San Francisco is also requiring its roughly 35,000 workers to be vaccinated or risk disciplinary action after the Food and Drug Administration approves one of the vaccines now being distributed under an emergency order.

It's unclear how many of Google's workers still haven't been vaccinated, although Pichai described the rate as high in his email.

The vaccine requirement will be first imposed at Google's Mountain View, California headquarters and other US offices before being extended to the more than 40 other countries where Google operates

Google's decision to extend its remote-work follows a similar move by another technology powerhouse, Apple, which recently moved its return-to-office plans from September to October, too.

The delays by Apple and Google could influence other major employers to take similar precautions, given that the technology industry has been at the forefront of the shift to remote work that has been triggered by the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Even before the World Health Organization declared a pandemic in March 2020, Google, Apple and many other prominent tech firms had been telling their employees to work from home. 

This marks the third time that Google has pushed back the date for fully reopening its offices.

Google's vaccine requirement also could embolden other employers to issue similar mandates to guard against outbreaks of the Delta variant and minimize the need to wear masks in the office.

While most companies are planning to bring back their workers at least a few days a week, others in the tech industry have decided to let employees do their jobs from remote locations permanently.    


These companies are requiring employees to get vaccinated 

Morgan Stanley

Goldman Sachs 

Wells Fargo 

Delta Airlines (for new hires only)

Broadway production of Hamilton

Houston Methodist Hospital network (for existing employees and new hires) 

Saks department store

United Airlines (for new hires only)

Boys & Girls Clubs of the Peninsula

Eleven Madison Park, a New York City-based Michelin restaurant 

Sunrise Senior Living


These companies are offering employees incentives to get vaccinated

ALDI groceries (Paid time off and adjusted hours to get vaccinated) 

Amazon ($100 bonus for workers who show proof of vaccination on first day of employment) 

Amtrak (two hours of bonus pay and excused absence)

American Airlines (additional paid vacation day in 2022 and a $50 bonus)

Bolthouse Farms ($500 bonus with proof of vaccination or if they get shot at on-site clinic)

Chobani (up to six hours of paid time off for employees to go get vaccinated)

Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden (four hours of paid time off to cover both doses of the vaccine)

Dollar General (one-time stipend equal to four hours of paid time off)

Instacart ($25 stipend to in-store employees and independent contractors)

JBS USA and Pilgrim's ($100 bonus)

Kroger ($100 bonus with proof of vaccination as well as $100 store credit and 1,000 fuel points for essential and frontline staffers)

Lidl ($200 bonus and scheduling flexibility for vaccination appointments)

McDonald's (up to four hours of paid time off to get the vaccine)

Publix ($125 gift cards for employees who show proof of vaccination)

Starbucks (up to four hours of paid time off for vaccine dosage appointments)

Target (up to four hours of paid time off per vaccine dosage and a $30 reimbursement for using a Lyft to get to their appointment) 

Trader Joe's (additional two hours of pay for each dose and scheduling flexbility)

Small businesses with fewer than 500 employees can get tax credit from IRS to offset time used by employees to receive or recover from vaccinations

These companies are providing at-work inoculations at on-site clinics


Bolthouse Farms

Legacy Restaurants, based in Houston

MGM Resorts

Los Angeles County 

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