Thousands of Google employees from all over the world took to the streets on Thursday to protest against the treatment of women at the company. The reason was the revelation that the company concealed sexual misconduct by Android founder Andy Rubin, among others.

In several cities, Google employees decided to take to the streets. The Silicon Valley headquarters involved hundreds of employees, says Silicon Angle. There were also protests in New York, London, Singapore, Tokyo, Berlin and Zurich. This protest was announced earlier this week on an internal forum of the company.

The demonstrations are the result of a report last week that Google had protected several former employees after they had been accused of sexual misconduct. One of them was Android founder Rubin, who would have forced a female employee to have oral sex. The Internet giant asked Rubin to quit, and gave him $90 million. Rubin accepted the amount, left and founded his new company Essential.

Following that report, the company itself admitted that it had dismissed 48 employees, including some managers, on charges of sexual misconduct.

Protests

In some cases the demonstrators appeared with protest signs. For example, one of those signs said “Glad to get on for 90 million dollars. No sexual misconduct required”. In San Francisco there were signs with texts like “Time’s Up Tech” and “Worker’s Rights Are Women’s Rights”.

“This walkout is the result of a busy week and the work of over 1,000 people,” said Claire Stapleton, an organizer of a protest, to a group of employees in New York. “I don’t know what it takes to change the system, but I do know that we are a force to be reckoned with.”

The demonstrators therefore came up with a number of requirements for the management of the company. They want equal pay for men and women, a public report on sexual misconduct within the company, that the Chief Diversity Officer reports directly to the CEO and that there will be a global process for reporting sexual misconduct safely and anonymously. In addition, the employees want a representative of the employees on the board of directors.

Response Sundar Pichai

CEO Sundar Pichai responded in an e-mail to the protests. “I understand the anger and disappointment that many of you feel. However, it is not known whether the management is responding to the demands of the demonstrators.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.