Together is how we can best combat and stop the Covid-19 virus from spreading out of control and taking more lives. In light of this, tech giant Google is at the forefront of the battle working on at least two fronts. Behind the scenes, the company is rapidly trying to get the correct information out there in an effort to stop misinformation in its tracks. The company owned by Alphabet has also recently taken more proactive steps to protect their own employees.
Google is taking action to protect their workers and others from the spread of Covid-19 by asking them to work from home. Starting first in early March, the tech giant whose parent company is Alphabet asked its employees in Washington State to stay home for work. This decision was made at the first Coronavirus death in America was in Washington State in the Seattle area.
Now, it has extended the decision to have all of their employees work from home, to all of North American staff, including employees in Canada. This will impact close to 100,000 Google employees in 11 offices.
Chris Rackow, Vice President of Google, issued a statement indicating that this decision is being made out of an abundance of caution. Though, the original request left North American offices open for those who called for them to work in the offices. Now, the federal guidelines are suggesting groups of no more than 10 people gather at once. Google is being proactive in protecting those who work for them, and as a tech company, will be finding out if their electronic communications developments over the years will stand up to the challenge of accommodating virtual work-from-home worldwide.
Other major tech companies making similar decisions include Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook, all with workplace shifts to the home starting in Washington state. Amazon and Facebook have both had at least one employee test positive for the virus.
Additionally, Google has banned all ads for N95 and N100 along with other types of medical face masks. They have also joined ranks with NHS in the UK to help stop the spread of misinformation regarding the Coronavirus. Part of these efforts includes promoting healthy habits like reminding people to wash hands, what social distancing means, and advice on those who need to travel. It also will be providing information about who needs to be tested and where this can take place.
Google has also established a Covid-19 fund. This money will be used for temporary staff and vendors can get paid for sick leave if they show symptoms of Coronavirus.