Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Google sacks employee over a memo about gender inequality in the tech industry

According to reports, Google has fired a male engineer at the center of a racket in Silicon Valley after he authored an internal memo asserting there are biological causes behind gender inequality in the tech industry.

In an email sent to Reuters on Monday, the engineer, James Damore who wrote the memo, confirmed his dismissal, saying that he had been fired for “perpetuating gender stereotypes”.

However, Damore noted that he was going to explore all legal options and, that before being fired, he had submitted a charge to the U.S. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) accusing Google upper management of trying to shame him into silence.

“It’s illegal to retaliate against an NLRB charge,” he wrote in the email.

Google, has since said it could not talk about individual employee cases.

Google Chief Executive, Sundar Pichai told employees in a note on Monday that portions of the anti-diversity memo “violate our Code of Conduct and cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace.”

Damore asserted in his 3,000-word document that circulated inside the company last week that “Google’s left bias has created a politically correct monoculture” which prevented honest discussion of diversity.

“The distribution of preferences and abilities of men and women differ in part due to biological causes and … these differences may explain why we don’t see equal representation of women in tech and leadership,” Damore wrote in the memo.

Google’s vice president of diversity, Danielle Brown, sent a memo in response to Damore over the weekend, saying the engineer’s essay “advanced incorrect assumptions about gender”.

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