Phoenix Delays Full Return To Workplace Plan

By Christina Estes
Published: Friday, July 16, 2021 - 2:52pm

phoenix city hall
Christina Estes/KJZZ
Phoenix City Hall.

Phoenix has postponed its return to workplace plans due to a rising COVID-19 community transmission rate. 

All city employees who are not approved for ongoing telework were supposed to return to the workplace on Monday, July 19. But on Friday, July 16, City Manager Ed Zuercher sent an email to nearly 14,000 employees saying plans to return to pre-pandemic work environments are on hold due to the rising transmission rate. 

Phoenix relies on transmission data captured by Maricopa County and updated each Thursday. The latest data from July 15 indicates Phoenix is experiencing high community transmission with more than 100 new cases per 100,000 residents and a percent positivity rate above 10%.

In June, Phoenix rolled out an ongoing telework program and limited capacity at workplaces to 50%. Employees and visitors to city facilities who are fully vaccinated are encouraged but not required to use face coverings and physical distancing. People who are unvaccinated or at-risk are expected to wear face coverings and practice distancing. 

“The city will continue to closely monitor community transmission rates over the next few weeks, but we remind you this is a fluid situation,” the email read. “We appreciate your continued patience and understanding during this time.”

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