Meta delays office reopening, mandates booster shots for returning workers

A smartphone with Meta logo and a 3D printed Facebook logo is placed on a laptop keyboard in this illustration.
Image Credit: Reuters

New York: Facebook parent Meta Platforms has delayed its US office reopening date and mandated COVID-19 booster shots for employees returning to office, joining the growing list of companies revamping reopening plans as Omicron surges.

For employees who opt to work from office, the reopening date has been delayed to March 28 from the earlier plan of January 31, the tech giant said. All workers returning to office will have to present proof of their booster jabs, while the company closely monitors the Omicron variant situation, it said. (Meta currently requires all its US employees coming to office to be vaccinated against the coronavirus.)

Corporate America has doubled down on vaccination mandates and delayed back-to-office plans as the Omicron variant drives up infections to record levels across the country. Last week, Citigroup said its US staff who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 14 will be placed on unpaid leave and fired at the end of the month.

In December, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp had offered an option to defer returning to office. The company said it will let employees decide by March 14 if they want to return to office or defer again.

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