Even though the company previously demanded all in-person workers to take the COVID-19 vaccine, a recent policy shift requires all employees, including those working remotely, to get the vaccine by Dec. 3, according to CNBC.
"Barring unvaccinated Googlers from the office publicly and possibly embarrassingly exposes a private choice as it would be difficult for the Googler not to reveal why they cannot return," the authors of the document said.
The authors also maintain the mandate would violate employees' medical privacy and could be used to support intrusive medical impositions.
The employees have asked for the mandate to be canceled in favor of vaccine requirements that are more inclusive.
"The implications are chilling," the authors claim. "Due to its presence as an industry leader, Google's mandate will influence companies around the world to consider these as acceptable trade-offs." Google is standing firm behind its vaccine policy.
"As we've stated to all our employees and the author of this document, our vaccination requirements are one of the most important ways we can keep our workforce safe and keep our services running," a Google spokesperson told CNBC. "We firmly stand behind our vaccination policy."
“Vaccines are key to our ability to enable a safe return to the office for everyone and minimize the spread of Covid-19 in our communities, wrote Chris Rackow, Google VP of security, in an email sent near the end of October.
Rackow stated the company was already implementing requirements, so the changes from Biden’s executive order were “minimal.” His email gave a deadline of Nov. 12 for employees to request exemptions for reasons such as religious beliefs or medical conditions and said that cases would be decided on a case-by-case basis.
In another example of activism, hundreds of Amazon and Google employees signed a letter denouncing any deals with Israel in October. The collective of employees said they could not look away "as the products we build are used to deny Palestinians their basic rights, force Palestinians out of their homes, and attack Palestinians in the Gaza Strip."
Most Google employees will not return to the office until at least Jan. 10.
Vaccination is a dilemma not only for Google but for corporate America in general. The Covid-19 virus has contributed to 772,570 deaths in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins data. Despite demonstrated effectiveness in giving a high level of protection against hospitalization and death, the country is trying to convince millions of people to get their first dose, as more than 60 million Americans remain unvaccinated.