Google is making changes following last week's sexual harassment walkout

Google is making changes following last week's sexual harassment walkout

Google is making changes following last week's sexual harassment walkout

He also pledged to provide more detail around sexual harassment investigations and outcomes at the company as part of Google's Investigations Report. Will it be enough to quell concerns?

On Thursday, Google published new policies for how the company will handle sexual harassment after employees staged a walkout and sent the company a list of five demands.

"We recognise that we have not always gotten everything right in the past and we are sincerely sorry for that", Pichai said in an email message to employees, a copy of which was shared with AFP.

Several steps will be taken to provide better care for those seeking to make claims, including extended counselling and support for accommodations and company leave.

On Thursday, Google CEO Sundar Pichai - who was publicly supportive of the walkout, likely because reacting any other way would be a bad PR look for an already tarnished organization - announced that the company has updated its sexual harassment policies.

And next year, all employees will be required to complete sexual harassment training annually. "Harassment is never acceptable and alcohol is never an excuse", Google said in a released action statement.

Google has also asked team leaders to check on the alcohol consumption at company events.

Along with sexual harassment, Google needs to address racism and discrimination that includes inequity in pay and promotions, organizers said.

"But one of the most common factors among the harassment complaints made today at Google is that the perpetrator had been drinking".

Google is ending forced arbitration in cases of sexual harassment and sexual assault in response to last week's employee walkout.

Most impactful will be a shift away from forced arbitration, a highly-criticised practice that meant employees were contractually-bound to deal with complaints internally, in what some legal observers have described as being a "private justice system".

Sabrina Geremia says she feels the walkout, which included workers in Toronto, Montreal and Waterloo, is a "difficult episode", but that she hopes it will become a "watermark" for the industry.

Pichai's disclosure came after over 20,000 Google employees worldwide walked out last week in protest of sexual harassment at the company and its improper handling of sexual misbehaviour allegations against top executives.

"Sundar ignored the demand for a worker to be represented on the board and [temps, vendors and contractors (TVCs)] continue to have no adequate protections from sexual harassment, who make up over half the Google workforce and are disproportionately women and people of colour".

Google on Thursday announced it's reforming the way it handles sexual misconduct cases.

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