Activision Blizzard to scrap COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the United States

The decision comes as workers prepare to return to the office.

Activision Blizzard is scrapping its COVID-19 vaccine mandate in the United States as workers prepare to return to the office on a regular basis.

A leaked email sent to staff by Activision Blizzard executive Brian Bulatao explains the policy has been axed "effective immediately," and states that "employees no longer need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to return to the office."

Former Activision Blizzard employee and ABetterABK founder and organizer, Jessica Gonzalez, shared the contents of the email on Twitter. It appears that was the same email seen by Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier.

In the email, Bulatao said Activision feels "it is important to align our site protocols with local guidance," adding it wiill continue to "monitor the risks for COVID-19" and could bring back the mandate if cases spike.

"Although proof of vaccination is no longer required to return to the office, we ask that you continue to confirm your vaccination status in Workday," the email continues.

"We recognize that returning to the office looks different across our business units. We also recognize that different sites are in various stages of return. While this change may not have an immediate impact on those who are still working remotely, we wanted to communicate this now so that you have sufficient time to prepare."

The email instructs employees with "personal circumstances" to reach out to their manager and HRBP, and explains the publisher is still in the process of defining "what the future of work looks like."

The news comes shortly after Microsoft agreed to purchase Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion.

Game Developer has reached out to Activision Blizzard for comment.

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