Amazon Delays Corporate Office Return to 2022 amid Delta Variant Surge

Corporate Amazon employees will not be required to return to in-person work until January 3

corporate amazon
Amazon. Photo: getty

Amazon is the latest tech giant to extend its return-to-office date once again.

The company will not ask corporate employees to return to in-person work until the first week of 2022, PEOPLE confirmed Thursday. That's a four-month push from their previous return date of September 7.

While Amazon hasn't mandated vaccines for its employees, when staffers do return on January 3, they will be required to show proof of vaccination or else wear a mask.

Amazon's warehouse workers — who have kept the distributor profitable, fulfilling an influx of online orders throughout the pandemic — are not required to wear a mask if they have been fully vaccinated. Unvaccinated workers must still mask up.

"We will continue to follow local government guidance and work closely with leading medical healthcare professionals, gathering their advice and recommendations as we go forward to ensure our work spaces are optimized for the safety of our teams," Amazon said in a statement, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Amazon Building
Amazon. Chesnot/Getty

In return-to-work guidance, Amazon said that employees will be expected to be in the office three days a week, and corporate employees will have the option to work fully remote for four weeks per year.

Amazon's delay comes after similar announcements from Facebook, Twitter, Google and Apple, which have all made adjustments to their return to work plans amid concerns about the highly contagious Delta variant of COVID-19.

In late July, Twitter announced it is once again closing its New York and San Francisco offices. The buildings had just reopened July 12, with employees permitted to return voluntarily.

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Twitter Headquarters
Twitter Headquarters. Justin Sullivan/Getty

In addition to pushing its return-to-office date back to October 18, Google announced that all workers returning to the company's campus must be vaccinated, except for those with medical exceptions or other "protected reasons."

Facebook, which has been criticized for the spread of misinformation on its platform about COVID-19, will also require employees to be vaccinated before returning to its offices.

Apple announced last month that it had pushed back its reopening date to October, after CEO Tim Cook told employees in June to expect to be back in the office at least three days a week beginning in September.

"As the situation continues to evolve, we're committed to the same measured approach that we have taken all along," the company told employees, according to The New York Times.

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