Netflix to Join Facebook, Google in Mandating Vaccines for On-site Employees

July 29, 2021 Updated: July 29, 2021

Netflix will impose a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for the cast and crew of all of its U.S. productions—the first major Hollywood studio to do so.

According to a report from Deadline, the vaccination mandate applies to all actors and any crew who come into close contact with them—also known as “Zone A” workers. Exceptions for the requirement could include religious, medical, and age reasons, but are likely to be rare, the outlet reported.

Netflix didn’t respond to a request for comment by press time.

It comes amid a surge in cases nationwide of the highly contagious COVID-19 Delta variant, and as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated its mask-wearing guidance to state that fully vaccinated individuals should wear masks indoors in some areas.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky told reporters on July 27 that research indicates that “on rare occasions, some vaccinated people infected with the Delta variant after vaccination may be contagious and spread the virus to others.”

Fully vaccinated individuals who contract the Delta variant may have the same viral load as people who are unvaccinated, Walensky said, noting that the variant can be transmitted by vaccinated people.

The Delta variant currently accounts for more than 80 percent of new cases in the United States.

President Joe Biden, meanwhile, has said the White House is considering mandating the COVID-19 vaccine for all federal workers. He is set to deliver his remarks on COVID-19 at the White House on Thursday afternoon.

Google on July 28 also stated that all employees working on company campuses must be vaccinated against COVID-19, making it the first big tech company to announce such a mandate.

“Getting vaccinated is one of the most important ways to keep ourselves and our communities healthy in the months ahead,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote in a letter sent to Google employees. “Anyone coming to work on our campuses will need to be vaccinated.”

Pichai added that exceptions would be made for “medical or other protected reasons.”

Facebook on the same day also announced a similar measure.

Critics of COVID-19 vaccine mandates argue that the three vaccines currently available in the United States—Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson—haven’t yet received full approval from the Food and Drug Administration pending the safety and efficacy results of the ongoing phase three trials.

The three vaccines are currently being administered under emergency use authorization (EUA), meaning that vaccine manufacturers aren’t held liable for any injury, including death, that their COVID-19 vaccine may cause.

The president on July 27 suggested that those who are still unvaccinated are “sowing enormous confusion.”

“We have a pandemic because of the unvaccinated, and they’re sowing enormous confusion,” Biden said while visiting McLean, Virginia. “And there’s only one thing we know for sure, if those other 100 million people got vaccinated, we’d be in a very different world. So get vaccinated. If you haven’t, you’re not nearly as smart as I said you were.”

Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter at The Epoch Times. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.