Google changes rules on dealing with sexual misconduct cases, a week after well-paid engineers and others have come out against their male-dominated culture. Employees will now be able to more freely speak out over issues of sexual harassment. Google’s Head Sundar Pichai made the concessions in an e-mail sent Thursday to Google employees. Google has yielded to one of the protesters’ main demands by abandoning mandatory arbitration of all cases of sexual misconduct.
It also undertook to provide staff with more information on these cases and results, and to expand mandatory training on the issue, addressing some of the issues requested by the workers when organizing the walkout.The breakdowns will include the number of cases that were confirmed in various departments of the company and list the types of penalties imposed, including dismissals, wage cuts and mandatory counseling. The company is also intensifying its training aimed at preventing misconduct, requiring that all employees perform the process annually instead of every year. Those who fall behind in their training, including senior executives, will be hit in their annual performance evaluations, leaving a stain that could lower their salary and make it harder to get promoted.
Employees who staged last week’s protest estimated that protest was attended by 20,000 workers in Alphabet offices in five continents.