Facebook on Monday announced it would require all US employees to wear masks on the company’s office campuses, even if they’re fully vaccinated against COVID-19, CNBC first reported.
The new policy will start on Wednesday and remain until further notice. “The health and safety of our employees and neighbors in the community remains our top priority,” a spokeswoman for the company said in a statement to CNBC.
“Given the rising numbers of COVID cases, the newest data on COVID variants, and an increasing number of local requirements, we are reinstating our mask requirement in all of Facebook’s U.S. offices, regardless of an employee’s vaccination status,” the spokeswoman said.
The mask policy comes the week after the social-media giant announced that staff coming into US offices must be fully vaccinated.
Scientists have warned the UK government that it should abandon its plans to lift all coronavirus restrictions in June, amid rising cases of the variant first found in India.
The government is set to lift restrictions on June 21. But scientists who advise the government are concerned about rising case numbers, and the potential for cases to further rise when people start mixing more.
Professor Ravi Gupta, a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group, told BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program on Monday that although new cases are “relatively low,” there had been an “exponential growth in the number of new cases” triggered by the variant identified in India.
He said the government should postpone unlocking the country by “a few weeks.”
“All waves start with low numbers of cases that grumble in the background and then become explosive … What we are seeing here is the signs of an early wave,” Gupta said.
The UK recorded more than 3,000 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, according to government data. This is the fifth consecutive day with at least 3,000 new cases. Before that, the UK had not recorded 3,000 new daily cases since April 12.
Professor Adam Finn, a member of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, also warned about the lifting of restrictions, telling ITV’s “Good Morning Britain” on Monday that “it’s unfortunate that everyone’s got this particular date in their head.”
“What we need to do is understand how things are going and adjust accordingly. What we’ve done wrong in the past is left it too late and delayed making decisions, ultimately pushed them back and then ended up with large waves of infection,” he said.