Former employees sue Google for gender discrimination

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A trio of former Google employees filed a lawsuit against the tech giant on Thursday that alleges that the company systematically paid women less for the same work and denied them opportunities for advancement, the Guardian reported. "The complaint notes that the net result of this systemic discrimination is that Google pays women less than men for comparable work", according to a website created by the women's attorneys.

In August, for instance, a leaked "manifesto" written by Google software engineer James Damore criticized the company's diversity efforts as "almost like a cult" and cited since-debunked research to justify different workplace practices for men and women.

In an interview to the daily, Kelly Ellis, a former Google employee and a lead plaintiff on the case said "We've been talking about these issues for a long time, and it hasn't really changed". The agency performed a statistical regression analysis of the pay for roughly 21,000 employees at the company's Mountain View office for 2015, according to the complaint. And, to change Google's policies and practices so that going forward women get equal pay for substantially similar work.

"In relation to this particular lawsuit, we'll review it in detail, but we disagree with the central allegations", said Google spokesperson Gina Scigliano.

The plaintiffs were a software engineer, a communications worker and a manager. And last month, three former female employees attacked the company's overwhelmingly white culture. Several male employees who were less qualified than her or at the same level were promoted before her.


The allegations mostly add to the claims made earlier this year by the US Department of Labor, which has an ongoing litigation against Google over alleged gender pay disparities.

Google's Scigliano maintained that job levels and promotions at the company were determined through "rigorous" committees and undergo review that includes checking for gender bias. He said he was inspired to focus on Google after learning of the company's fight with the Labor Department. Prior to that, she had worked as an engineer after graduating from the University of Virginia in 2006, the suit says.

Google, which has been in the hot seat already this year when it was sued for compensation data, finds itself with another lawsuit dealing with employee compensation, or rather the lack of compensation and opportunities provided for the women it employes.

"If we ever see individual discrepancies or problems, we work to fix them", she said. The sides have been doing combating in court over how much data Google must turn over.

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