Published: Sun, March 04, 2018
Hi-Tech | By Preston Stone

Lawsuit: Google Hiring Practices Discriminated Against Whites, Asians

Lawsuit: Google Hiring Practices Discriminated Against Whites, Asians

Wilberg, who recruited engineers for Google's and YouTube's parent company Alphabet, said he was sacked after complaining to upper management about the discriminatory hiring practices, and alleges that other members of his team were either disregarded, transferred or demoted.

The lawsuit, filed by Arne Wilberg, a white male who worked at Google for nine years, including four years as a recruiter at YouTube, alleges the division of Alphabet Inc.'s Google set quotas for hiring minorities.

Arne Wilberg worked at Google and YouTube as a recruiter, contractor, and full-time employee for almost a decade.

In his suit, Wilberg says when he started to resist such hiring efforts, his previously high performance marks started to slip, per Ars Technica; he was sacked in November.

The problem is that mandatory quotas based on gender or ethnicity may violate USA anti-discrimination laws, depending on how they're implemented.

The Wall Street Journal said that Wilberg's coworkers corroborated his story and said that Youtube's hiring initiatives were minority quota based and that some recruiters complained that this practice was unfair. "We have a clear policy to hire candidates based on their merit, not their identity", she said in a statement.

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The hiring practices challenged in the lawsuit fall into a controversial area of labor law, where setting goals to diversify is acceptable, but setting quotas is not.

Wilberg claims that his performance reviews began to suffer as he refused to follow YouTube's diversity hiring agenda. The suit claims that one Google recruiter complained that managers spoke about black people as if they were objects.

Although Google initially fought not to disclose the demographic makeup of its workforce, the company was the first big company in Silicon Valley to release an annual diversity report, which is now common practice among tech firms.

"We will vigorously defend this lawsuit". Wilberg claims he and other recruiting team members were made to feel "completely uncomfortable and psychologically unsafe" reporting to their boss, a champion of the diversity policies.

Just Thursday, Gizmodo reported that a former female software engineer had filed a lawsuit accusing the company of condoning a "bro-culture" that encouraged sexual harassment and turning a blind eye to harmful pranks and physical violence. Google denies that its salaries are discriminatory. Such is the case with Google, which is facing several similar lawsuits accusing it of discrimination against woman, conservative white men and more. Former Google employee James Damore had earlier claimed that he was sacked for writing an anti-diversity memo which caused controversy. In a way, Google even popularized the idea of transparency around diversity numbers as a defensive tactic against claims about systemic inequality.

The company also "had a practice of systematically discriminating against older engineers in its hiring practices", the suit says.

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