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Former Google employee files lawsuit claiming he was sacked for opposing discrimination

24 February, 2018, 04:59 | Author: Abraham Jackson
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A former Google employee is now suing the company, claiming he was wrongfully terminated for his criticism of an anti-diversity memo sent to staff members a year ago, Wired Magazine reports.

Damore was sacked for "advancing harmful gender stereotypes" in August 2017 after the memo, in which he posited that psychological differences between men and women explain the gaping gender imbalance at Google, was leaked and went viral.

"Chevalier's identity did not conform to the typical Google employee", according to the suit, which noted that the firm's employees were overwhelmingly white, male and non-transgender. Chevalier subsequently complained, and was encouraged to consider leaving and told that "working at Google was not for everyone".

Chevalier, who is transgender and disabled, asserts that the axe came as a result of his response (via internal posts and memes) to racist and sexist encounters within the company - specifically the James Damore memo.

Damore recently had a separate labour board complaint shot down by the US National Labor Relations Board, which stated in a guidance memo that Google was in the right to fire him.

For its part, Google said that "lively debate" was an important pillar of company culture, and that the "overwhelming majority" of employees adhere to its communications guidelines. "But like any workplace, that does not mean anything goes".

"All employees acknowledge our code of conduct and other workplace policies".

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Scigliano adds, "This is a very standard expectation that most employers have of their employees". But when an employee does not, it is something that we must take seriously. we always make our decision without any regard to the employee's political views.

On Wednesday, another ex-employee, Tim Chevalier filed a complaint against the company for dismissing him for posting a political view than others including criticism of Damore.

Chevalier is one of the four employees who claimed they were disciplined for speaking out internally against racism and sexism. A Google employee allegedly responded to the post by noting that asking for ID was just part of the job, Gizmodo reported.

"Human Resources explicitly told Chevalier that Google was ending his employment because of his political statements in opposition to the discrimination, harassment, and white supremacy he saw being expressed on Google's internal messaging systems", the suit said.

The suit alleges that Chevalier was chastised by his manager for spending too much time on "social activism" and by human resources for a blogpost he wrote criticizing the Damore memo as "misogynistic". The lawsuit seeks damages for seeks damages for lost wages, emotional distress and punitive damages.

The document also mentions that Google's HR division informed Chevalier before he was sacked that his supervisors were "critical of [his] political participation and dismissive of his attempts to change Google's culture". "Company social networking forums can be incredibly useful, but employers have an obligation to prevent them from becoming a cesspool of bullying and harassment", Lowe said in a press release.

Interestingly, Chevalier's posts had been quoted extensive in Damore's lawsuit against Google. A twitter account posted a screenshot of twitter profile of employees, which are color, women, or trans men.

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