Your Odds of Going Back to the Office Are Dropping by the Day

Apple, Google, Lyft, the New York Times, Twitter. The list of companies delaying office reopenings is growing.

Empty desks and chairs at Google headquarters in Mountain View, California, on Thursday. Yichuan Cao/AP

The coronavirus is a rapidly developing news story, so some of the content in this article might be out of date. Check out our most recent coverage of the coronavirus crisis, and subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

Some good news if you’re an office worker who can’t stand your boss, commuting, or both: Your odds of returning to the office in the coming weeks are falling. 

Labor Day was supposed to be the big switch back to in-person work after 17 months of Zoom. Now, with the Delta variant surging across the country, many of America’s biggest corporations are pushing back their returns dates again—in some cases indefinitely. 

The New York Times announced on Friday that it was indefinitely delaying its September 7 return date. The move comes after a long list of delays at tech companies:

  • Last week, Apple delayed its return to in person work until October.
  • Twitter announced on Wednesday that it was immediately closing its New York and San Francisco offices and indefinitely postponing other office reopenings.
  • Also on Wednesday, Google said it would push back reopening until mid-October and require workers to be vaccinated.
  • The same day, Lyft suspended its return until February.
  • On Thursday, LinkedIn announced that it will allow employees to work remotely on a permanent basis. 

The closures mark a new, unfortunate, phase in the slow reopening of society. But the reality is that for many people, particularly people of color, working remotely has never been an option. In June, the progressive Economic Policy Institute found that only one in six Latinx workers and one in five Black workers have been able to telework during the pandemic, compared to one in four white workers. 

The disparities are even more severe along educational lines. In April, a third of workers with a bachelor’s degree or higher were teleworking. Only one in twenty workers with a high school degree or less were able to do the same. 

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate