Google employees claim to have faced retaliation for reporting harassment

Dozens of Google employees who reported workplace issues claim to have been retaliated against by the company’s human resources department.

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What you need to know

  • A new report claims Google employees continue to face retaliation for reporting workplace issues.
  • Google’s human resources department apparently retaliated against employees who reported workspace issues by demoting them, pushing them out, or placing them on less desirable projects.
  • Some employees even claim to have suffered mental health or other medical issues as a result of the retaliation they faced.

In November last year, 20,000 employees walked out of Google’s offices around the world to protest against the company’s handling of sexual harassment. Even though almost a year has passed since the walkout, a new report from Recode claims many Google employees are still afraid to report workplace issues due to the fear of retaliation.

In an internal document obtained by the folks over at Recode, 45 Google employees have alleged that they were demoted, pushed out, or placed on less desirable projects when they filed a complaint with the company’s human resources department.

In a statement to Recode, Google Vice President of People Operations Eileen Naughton said:

Reporting misconduct takes courage and we want to provide care and support to people who raise concerns. All instances of inappropriate conduct reported to us are investigated rigorously, and over the past year we have simplified how employees can raise concerns and provided more transparency into the investigations process at Google. We work to be extremely transparent about how we handle complaints and the action we take.

While Google updated its policies for handling sexual harassment shortly after the historic walkout by its employees last year, the new report seems to suggest the company still has a “retaliation culture.”

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