The former Google engineer who was sacked over a memo he wrote that suggested biological reasons are behind the predominance of male engineers at the company filed a lawsuit in state court on Monday. At the time of his ouster, Sundar Pichai, the chief executive of Google, described Damore's comments as "offensive", arguing they violating the company's Code of Conduct and would advance "harmful gender stereotypes in the workplace".
"Damore, Gudeman, and other class members were ostracized, belittled, and punished for their heterodox political views, and for the added sin of their birth circumstances of being Caucasian and/or males", the suit reads. Women at Google, Uber, Twitter Inc. and Microsoft Corp. are seeking class-action status in lawsuits accusing those companies of favoring men for promotions in engineering roles.
Titled "Google's Ideological Echo Chamber", it caused fierce debate about free speech in the workplace and diversity in Silicon Valley. "This unacceptable behavior occurred at the hands of high-level managers at Google who were responsible for hundreds, if not thousands, of hiring and firing decisions".
It says Google's employment practices are illegal, and that they employ illegal hiring quotas to fill posts with women and minorities. "Within his lawsuit, Damore further insists that the company "[shames] Google business units for failing to achieve numerical gender parity", and his attorneys characterize him as "surprised" by Google's reaction to his manifesto.
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Gudeman worked at Google from 2013 until December 2016, when he claims he was wrongfully terminated from the tech company, according to the complaint.
His memo argued there were few women in top jobs at the firm due to biological differences in their capabilities. The duo claims that Google discriminates against white male conservatives.
The suit includes allegations from other unnamed current and former employees. "Google has engaged in some shocking activities in my opinion. There's a Lord of the Flies mentality".
The imbroglio at Google is the latest in a long string of incidents concerning gender bias and diversity in the tech enclave. The women allege that female employees are paid less than their male counterparts.