Google Changes Sexual Harassment Policies in Response to Protestors

11 November, 2018, 19:55 | Author: Frank Williams
  • Google CEO announces new action plan following Andy Rubin fiasco

San Francisco: Google on Thursday outlined changes to its handling of sexual misconduct complaints, hoping to calm outrage that triggered a worldwide walkout of workers last week.

"We recognize that we have not always gotten everything right in the past and we are sincerely sorry for that", said Pichai in an email send to employees that the company made public. "It's not even clear to me that search in China is the product we need to do today".

In the letter, Pichai said Google would take the following steps: make arbitration available for individual sexual harassment and sexual assault claims; overhaul its report channels and provide live support; allow anyone reporting harassment to be accompanied by a support person; and offer "extra care and resources for Googlers during and after the process", including counseling and career support. And all employees will be required to complete sexual harassment training each year (compared to every two years as the current policy mandates).

Google has also asked team leaders to check on the alcohol consumption at company events.

Collective action works. It will continue working.

Pichai has promised to collect feedback from workers after they walked out in the wake of a New York Times story that detailed allegations of sexual misconduct against a handful of Google employees including Android software creator Andy Rubin and Richard DeVaul, a director at Google's X lab.

More news: Imelda Marcos ordered arrested for seven counts of graft

The last couple of weeks haven't been great ones for Google.

Google will investigate complaints made by its contractors against employees and require that suppliers investigate complaints against contractors, the company said.

Along with publicly posting CEO Sundar Pichai's e-mail to the employees, the company has released a long PDF file named " Our commitments and actions". A massive turnout at the "Googleplex" in Silicon Valley was the final stage of a global walkout that began in Asia and spread to Google offices in Europe. As though the basic logic that you shouldn't black out and harass or assault your coworkers shouldn't be enough to keep Google employees from doing so.

"However, the response ignored several of the core demands - like elevating the diversity officer and employee representation on the board - and troublingly erased those focused on racism, discrimination, and the structural inequity built into the modern day Jim Crow class system that separates "full time" employees from contract workers". "They all have the same root cause, which is a concentration of power and a lack of accountability at the top", Parker said.

The new policy changes announced by Google have virtually met most of the demands by Google protesters, except the one that demanded a place for an employee representative on the company's board.

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