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US Government says Google tried to restrict the Media Coverage of a Gender Discrimination Case

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London, May 23, 2017: Google tried to restrict the media coverage of a gender discrimination case brought by the US government alleging that the company had violated federal laws when it did not provide employees’ salary history and contact information as part of an audit, a media report has revealed.

The company tried to dismiss a lawsuit filed by the US Department of Labor, claiming that a government attorney may have violated ethics rules after he/she did an interview with the Guardian.

Referring to the court documents, the newspaper on Monday said Google unsuccessfully argued that a judge should dismiss a lawsuit filed by the US Department of Labor (DoL).

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The DoL had accused Google of systematically underpaying women and the court battle centre on the company’s refusal to hand over salary data the government has requested to which Google replied by saying that the data request was overly broad and violates its workers’ privacy.

The report observed that the motion for dismissal of the case shows Google’s aggressive efforts to end the case.

Critics said it appeared that Google was attempting to limit media scrutiny with unusual tactics that raise free press concerns and seem to contradict the corporation’s public claims that it is committed to transparency and accountability in its efforts to promote equal pay.

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It was also reported that Google tried to restrict press access during a hearing last month.

“Following a private meeting with the judge about the Guardian’s reporting, Google’s attorney requested that the proceeding be closed to the media before continuing, but a DoL attorney objected and the judge sided with the government,” the report said.

Google has repeatedly claimed that it has eliminated its gender pay gap globally with innovative compensation models. (IANS)

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Tech Giant Google Ends Forced Arbitration For Employees Globally

Last November, over 20,000 employees staged a walkout at Google over forced arbitration

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A Google logo is displayed at the entrance to the internet based company's offices in Toronto. VOA

After facing intense protests over sexual misconduct and discrimination at workplace, Google has decided to end the forced arbitration policy for its employees.

According to a report in Axios on Thursday, the new policy will go into effect from March 21 for Google employees globally.

The decision will not open the door to bringing lawsuits over previously-settled claims, said Google.

“Employees with disputes currently in arbitration who are still employed by the company as of March 21 will be able to choose to sue instead,” it added.

Google employees the world over have called for the practice to end in other cases of harassment and discrimination.

Google
The Google logo is seen at a start-up campus in Paris, France, Feb. 15, 2018. VOA

“Google appears to be meeting that demand for employees — but the change will not apply in the same blanket way to the many contractors, vendors and temporary employees it uses,” said the report.

Forced arbitration agreements require employees to waive their rights to make a legal claim in court and instead go through a private system, said TechCrunch.

Google also said it would remove mandatory arbitration from legal agreements it reaches directly with its contract and temporary workforce.

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Last month, Google employees took to Twitter and Instagram to educate the public about forced arbitration

Last November, over 20,000 employees staged a walkout at Google over forced arbitration. (IANS)