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Citigroup tells New York-area staff to work remotely for the holidays due to Omicron surge

December 16, 2021, 5:13 PM UTC

Citigroup Inc. said staffers in the New York City metropolitan area could work from home again through the holidays if they are able, citing the recent rise in COVID-19 cases in the region.

The move, which applies to offices in New York City and Jersey City, New Jersey, was aimed at protecting employees’ holiday plans and to thin out the number of workers coming into those facilities, according to a spokesperson. Citigroup already requires all staffers coming into those offices to be vaccinated. 

“Given the current situation, if you’re able to work from home now through the holidays, please feel free to speak to your manager about doing so,” Citigroup said in a memo to staff. “We will ask that certain colleagues, including those who are site dependent, continue to come into the office to ensure critical business operations.

New York, one of the states hit hardest in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic, is once again contending with rising cases. This week, models from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated the Omicron variant could make up 13% of COVID-19 infections in the area and in New Jersey.

Citigroup began inviting more staffers to return to the office throughout the summer. The New York-based firm, under newly installed Chief Executive Officer Jane Fraser, has been the most vocal among rivals about continuing to allow staffers to work from home even after the pandemic subsides.  

“We continue to closely monitor the latest medical data, and your health and safety remain our top priority,” Citigroup said in the memo. “Like all of you, we hoped that COVID would be behind us by now, but greatly appreciate your adaptability, support for your colleagues and continued adherence to our safety measures.” 

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