REITs, along with much of corporate America, are considering whether to impose COVID-19 vaccine mandates for their employees in the face of new variants and rising numbers of infections among the unvaccinated. For its part, Prologis, Inc. (NYSE: PLD) has already made the decision to require employees to be vaccinated.
Prologis will mandate vaccines for its U.S.-based staff as of Oct.15, and would like to see others in the industry do the same.
“We encourage our peers in the industry to take an approach that values their employees, customers, and communities in the same way we do in order to help put this pandemic truly in the rear-view mirror,” Prologis Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel Ed Nekritz said.
Nekritz said the logistics REIT had originally planned for staff to return to the office after Labor Day. That date has now been pushed back to Oct.15, although the timing will continue to be assessed based on the course of the virus. When employees return to the office, they will need to show proof of vaccination or separate from the company. Vaccine exceptions will be made for medical and religious reasons.
Nekritz added that Prologis’ focus, since the beginning of the pandemic, has been on the health and safety of its employees, their families, its customers, and communities. “We really believe that at the stage we’re at in the pandemic with the Delta variant, that we need to take additional action to ensure that safety,” he said.
Currently, 82% of Prologis’ U.S.-based staff have received a vaccine. “We hope that with a little bit of positive encouragement, those that are on the fence about it will take the next step,” Nekritz said. He added that “it’s our hope that we don’t have to have those (termination) conversations.”