Coronavirus Outbreak: Facebook will keep its Seattle office shut until the 9th of March as one of its contractors was tested positive for the novel Coronavirus. The company also suggests that all of its employees from the office should work from home for the remainder of the month.
This is the second case reported by a tech giant in the United States (US), the first one was Amazon where one of its employee in Seattle was found positive for COVID-19 this week.
On Wednesday, komonews.com mentioned Tracy Clayton, Facebook’s Spokesperson informing that a contractor based in the Stadium East Officer was tested positive for Coronavirus.
Clayton was quoted saying, “We’ve notified our employees and are following the advice of public health officials to prioritize everyone’s health and safety,”.
The contractor last came in the Facebook office on the 21st of February.
Health officials from King County have said that all Facebook sites should work from home until the 31st of March.
Coronavirus has also hit Amazon’s Headquarters in Seattle, the Amazon employee is based out of the company’s “Brazil” (SEA53) building. The company said, “We’re supporting the affected employee who is in quarantine,” in a statement.
This week, Amazon confirmed that two employees working in its Italy office were diagnosed with the Coronavirus.
Microsoft, too, has asked its employees in Seattle to work from home until the end of the month. On Wednesday, Kurt DelBene, Executive Vice President (EVP) of Microsoft said, “Consistent with King County guidance, we are recommending all employees who are in a job that can be done from home should do so through March 25th. Taking these measures will ensure your safety and also make the workplace safer for those that need to be onsite,” in a statement.
Microsoft employees close to 54,000 people in the Seattle region.
In the Washington State, King County has reported 21 cases and 8 deaths so far.
DelBene said, “If in your role it is essential to be in the office or other work environments (data centre, retail, etc.), plan to continue to go to your location. We will continue to implement the CDC guidelines for cleaning and sanitising the locations,”.
Microsoft is advising its employees that they should “limit prolonged interactions and try to stay more than six feet (1.8 meters) away from others. Keep in-person meetings as short as possible. Most importantly do not come to work if you are sick. This will be clearly posted on all building entrances”.
Twitter, too, has asked 5,000 of its employees to work from home.