(Bloomberg) -- Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, the pension fund for local government workers in Canada’s largest province, told staff they may continue working remotely until March 31.
The policy applies to employees who have the ability to do their jobs from home. “We recognize and thank our colleagues whose roles require them to be on site and who’ve been going into the office for the duration of the pandemic,” said a memo signed by Rodney Hill, Omers’s chief risk officer, and Dean Hopkins, chief operating officer of its real estate investment arm, Oxford Properties Group.
“Ultimately, we’re an office-based culture,” the two executives said, adding that Omers plans to reopen its office when conditions allow. The Toronto-based pension fund managed C$109 billion ($85 billion) as of the end of 2019.
Canada became one of the first countries to approve a vaccine from Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE on Wednesday, but will have limited quantities at first. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said the government expects a majority of the population will be able to get a vaccine by September.
Read more: Vaccines Herald Return to Offices, But Workers Don’t Want to Go
“We continue to monitor our approach, adjust as needed, and expect to work this way until at least March 31, 2021, when we will re-evaluate based on conditions,” Omers spokesperson Neil Hrab said.
Financial institutions on Wall Street and beyond have delayed return-to- office plans as coronavirus cases have spiked. Some, including Deutsche Bank AG and Nomura Holdings Inc., are weighing or have decided on making flexible work arrangements permanent.
(Updates to add Omers response in fifth paragraph)
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