Google overhauls sexual harassment policies after worldwide protests

Google overhauls sexual harassment policies after worldwide protests

Will it be enough to quell concerns?

"We demand a truly equitable culture", organizer Stephanie Parker wrote in response to Pichai's November 8 email, "and Google leadership can achieve this by putting employee representation on the board and giving full rights and protections to contract workers, our most vulnerable workers, many of whom are Black and Brown women". About a year ago, Microsoft also removed its forced arbitration clause for sexual harassment claims and endorsed a Senate bill attempting to make such a change the law of the land.

"We'll give better support and care to the people who raise them", said Pichai.He said that Google will take more powerful steps to address sexual harassment, including making arbitration optional for individual sexual harassment and sexual assault claims. Those who don't comply will be docked one rating in the year-end Perf (Google's performance review system).

"Harassment is never acceptable and alcohol is never an excuse", Mr Pichai wrote.

Google executives overseeing events will be expected to strongly discourage excessive drinking, according to the company, which vowed "onerous actions" if problems persisted.

It mirrors a change made by ride-hailing service Uber after complaints from its women employees prompted an internal investigation concluding its rank had been poisoned by rampant sexual harassment.

Updates and expansion of Google's mandatory sexual harassment training.


"Last year, we published our harassment policy - https://peoplepractices.fb.com/harassment-policy/ - because we believe that the more companies are open about their policies, the more we can all learn from one another". The company also says it will provide "more granularity" around sexual harassment investigations and outcomes at the company as part of its "Investigations Report".

Employees from New York City, Dublin, London, Singapore, Toronto, Berlin, Cambridge, and Mountain View in Silicon Valley all joined in with the protest and provided a list of demands to Google executives.

But the Tech Workers Coalition, which backed last week's action, said the measures did not go almost far enough, particularly where it related to contractors who worked with the firm.

In what seems to have become a malaise in large corporations, a recent sexual allegation against a senior executive at Google's parent company Alphabet has burst its seams, per a Fortune report.

CEO Sundar Pichai spelled out the concessions in an email sent Thursday to Google employees.

Employees didn't get everything they wanted, but they did get their top demand: an end to forced arbitration for sexual harassment cases.

"We demand a truly equitable culture, and Google leadership can achieve this by putting employee representation on the board and giving full rights and protections to contract workers, our most vulnerable workers, many of whom are black and brown women", Organizer Stephanie Parker said in a statement.

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