Return to office for New Mexico workers delayed until Feb. 2

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The scheduled return to the office for all state workers who have been working remotely has been delayed until next month, according to New Mexico officials.

All exempt employees, managers, supervisors and directors were instructed Friday to report back to the office Tuesday while other employees who have been working remotely will be able to continue to do so until Feb. 2.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reported Wednesday that the delayed implementation of a return to in-person work comes after the State Personnel Office informed employees last month it was rescinding a telework policy and everyone would have to report back to the office at the first of the year.

The decision has sparked pushback from labor groups that have described the directive as unnecessary and warned it could result in even higher vacancy rates in state government, especially among employees who have to commute, don’t have access to childcare or are dealing with other circumstances that would make going back to the office difficult, according to the newspaper.