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Details of alleged discrimination while working at Google®
Google® has settled a class-action lawsuit that accused it of systematically underpaying women, promising to provide $118 million in monetary relief and invite outsiders to review its pay practices.
Three former Google® employees first sued the company in 2017 in Ellis v. Google LLC, claiming that it paid women less than men for the same job; a fourth plaintiff was added later.
The settlement covers about 15,500 women employed in California by Google® in 236 different job titles since 2013.
“As a woman who’s spent her entire career in the tech industry, I’m optimistic that the actions Google has agreed to take as part of this settlement will ensure more equity for women,” said Plaintiff Holly Pease. “Google, since its founding, has led the tech industry. They also have an opportunity to lead the charge to ensure inclusion and equity for women in tech.”
According to the employees making the claims of harassment and discrimination: "We are the men and women plaintiffs (named and anonymous) in the Google lawsuit alleging workplace bias against women and men with views perceived as conservative—men; and Caucasian/Asian people who work at Google, worked at Google, or applied to work at Google but were not hired because of Google's unlawful employment practices.
“Some of us were fired for our views or other protected characteristics.
“Some of us have been bullied, silenced, shamed, humiliated, and retaliated against for raising issues about Google's quotas, blacklists, and discrimination against those who challenge its workplace practices.
“Google is the most powerful corporation in the world, worth over $700 billion and with an ability to affect every aspect of our lives.”
“Google® is not alone in allowing potentially discriminatory practices to flourish in its workplaces.
“If you are a member of a protected group and believe that your employer has engaged in unlawful discrimination or harassment based on your protected status, you should talk to an experienced attorney.”
Google is planning to allow third-party experts to assess how it could improve its pay equity process and be fairer when establishing rank and pay for new hires–there will also be an external monitor to assess whether the company is following the experts’ recommendations
The Shield Justice Online team encourages victims that allegedly suffered discrimination while working at Google® to get a free, private case evaluation.
Details on the various types and requirements of discrimination lawsuits
The Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against applicants and workers in all aspects of employment on the basis of their protected characteristics.
These protected statuses include the following:
- Sexual orientation
- National origin
- Gender identity
Several other federal laws also prohibit workplace discrimination on the basis of age if over 40, genetic information, disability status, and pregnancy status, including:
- The Age Discrimination in Employment Act;
- The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act;
- The Americans with Disabilities Act; and,
- The Pregnancy Discrimination Act
Title VII also provides protection to workers from retaliation for filing discrimination complaints or participating in investigations of discrimination complaints.
To meet the burden of proof for a discrimination case, the plaintiff must prove the following elements:
- The employee is a member of a protected group based on race, sex, color, etc.;
- The employee was fully qualified for the position or was performing the job well and meeting the job expectations;
- The employee was not hired, not promoted, or was fired; and,
- The employer chose someone for the position who was less qualified and who was not a member of a protected group.
To establish a case of harassment, a plaintiff must prove the following elements:
- The plaintiff is a member of a protected group;
- The plaintiff was targeted for unwelcome harassment;
- The harassment was based on the plaintiff's membership in a protected group;
- The harassing conduct was strong enough that it affected the conditions of the plaintiff's job; and,e
- The employer either knew or should have known about what was happening but failed to attempt to stop it.
The Shield Justice Online team believes that victims that allegedly suffered discrimination while working at Google® should receive justice and compensation for losses.
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