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Google reportedly says employees defying vaccine policy will lose their jobs

Memo tells employees they risk losing pay and being terminated if they don't comply with the company's rules, CNBC reports.

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Claudia Cruz/CNET

Google has told its employees they will lose pay and eventually be fired if they don't comply with the company's COVID-19 vaccination rules, CNBC reported Tuesday, citing internal documents.

Google's leadership told employees in a memo that they had until Dec. 3 to either declare their vaccination status and upload documentation showing proof, or to apply for a medical or religious exemption, according to the report.

Google said that after that date, it would start contacting employees who hadn't provided proof of vaccination or were unvaccinated, as well as those whose exemption requests weren't approved, CNBC reported.

The memo said employees who haven't complied with the vaccination rules by the Jan. 18 deadline will be placed on "paid administrative leave" for 30 days, followed by an "unpaid personal leave" for up to six months and eventual termination, CNBC reported.

When contacted for comment, Google didn't address the memo but said the company's policy is designed to protect its employees and the company.

"Our vaccination requirements are one of the most important ways we can keep our workforce safe and keep our services running," a Google spokesperson said. "We're committed to doing everything possible to help our employees who can get vaccinated do so and firmly stand behind our vaccination policy."

Google's return-to-office policies have caused major tension among the tech giant's employees. Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced in July that the company would require vaccinations for those returning to offices. But the company puts its return-to-office plans on hold earlier this month amid concerns of increased infection rates due to the omicron variant.

The company has also unveiled plans that would require most employees to work from their offices at least three days a week. Under the new structure, 20% of the company would work remotely. Another 20% could work from new locations. The other 60% would continue working from their normal office. 

The company has also faced blowback from employees who are upset at potential pay cuts for moving to smaller markets.