Washington Post to require proof of vaccination for September return to offices

Washington Post to require proof of vaccination for September return to offices
© Greg Nash

The Washington Post will require all employees to provide proof that they have been vaccinated if they plan to return to the paper's newsroom this fall. 

The policy, announced to staffers in a memo sent by Publisher Fred Ryan on Tuesday, would make "accommodations" only for "those with documented medical conditions and religious concerns." 

Employees with "genuine medical and religious concerns" will need to document them with the company's human resources team, Ryan said. 

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"In the many conversations I have had with Post employees across all departments, I have heard the genuine concerns they have for themselves and their families with new COVID variants emerging," Ryan wrote. "Accordingly, our plan is to require all Washington Post employees to demonstrate proof of full COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of employment beginning with our September 13 office return." 

The policy will also be in place for contractors and guests who wish to enter the Post building on K Street in downtown Washington, D.C., Ryan said. 

"Even though the overwhelming majority of Post employees have already provided proof of vaccination, I do not take this decision lightly," Ryan wrote. "However, in considering the serious health issues and genuine safety concerns of so many Post employees, I believe the plan is the right one."

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The announcement comes as several states and localities have teased or announced they will require proof of vaccination for teachers, health-care workers and people who work in other high-contact industries.

The federal government on Monday announced it would require all health-care personnel for the Department of Veterans Affairs, headquartered just blocks from the Post's offices, to be vaccinated. 

The Post, like several other major newsrooms across the country, began welcoming back some employees with a so-called soft reopening earlier this summer. 

The New York Times is expected to begin bringing back most employees to its offices beginning Sept. 7. 

--Updated at 3:47 p.m.