Google employee in Bengaluru gets infected with coronavirus, work-from-home announced
Tech giant Google on Thursday confirmed that one of its employees, working at the Bengaluru office, caught the coronavirus infection on his trip to Greece. While the infected person has been kept at an isolation ward in a hospital, Google asked all employees of that particular office to work from home on Friday. The person spent some hours at the office, Google disclosed.
The employee is newest coronavirus patient in Karnataka
The Google employee is the fifth case of coronavirus to have rocked Karnataka. India's first death due to coronavirus also happened in Karnataka, when a 76-year-old, who came from Saudi Arabia, passed away. About its employee getting infected, Google said, "He was in one of our Bengaluru offices for a few hours before developing any symptoms. The employee has been on quarantine since then."
We have taken and will take necessary precautions: Google
"Out of an abundance of caution, we are asking employees in that Bengaluru office to work from home from tomorrow. We have taken and will continue to take necessary precautionary measures, following the advice of public health officials," the statement added.
Google extended work from home option to some employees
In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, Google has asked all its employees working in North America, Europe, and other regions to log-in from their homes. But so far in Asia, this move was not extended. Meanwhile, home-grown companies have taken a more liberal approach. Start-ups like Zerodha, Instamojo, Springworks, and Meesho have already asked employees to work from home.
Contractors can't access work remotely, have to come to office
The work from home option, however, wasn't extended to nearly 135,000 temps and contractors, who constitute Google's extended workforce. "We are sitting here in the Petri dish, with the choice of not getting paid, or maybe getting sick and then putting our family and friends at risk too," an anxious contractor working at the software giant's Pittsburgh office told The Guardian.
However, a COVID-19 fund has been established by Google
To note, Google announced that it was setting up a COVID-19 fund which will allow temporary staff members to "take paid sick leave if they have potential symptoms of COVID-19, or can't come into work because they're quarantined". Earlier, Google's top official Adrienne Crowther said the extended workforce will be duly compensated if they can't come to work due to coronavirus-related issues.