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Did Google Discriminate Against a Pregnant Employee? One Lawsuit Thinks So

— February 24, 2020

Earlier this month, the EEOC decided to launch an investigation into Google over alleged pregnancy discrimination allegations.

Pregnancy discrimination has been in the news a lot in recent years, and that trend doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. Earlier this month, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission decided to launch an investigation in Google after a former employee claimed she experienced discrimination from the tech giant while she was pregnant.

According to the former employee, Chelsey Glasson, the discrimination she faced was so bad that she ended up writing an “an internal memo that went viral last summer called ‘I’m Not Returning to Google After Maternity Leave, and Here is Why.’” Throughout the memo she made allegations and claims that her supervisor at the time “made discriminatory remarks about pregnant women” and that the “company retaliated against her with poor performance ratings and unfairly denied her a leadership position.” At the time, Glasson had been working as a user experience researcher at Alphabet’s Google for five years.

Pregnant Woman
Pregnant Woman; image courtesy of Greyerbaby via Pixabay,

Despite filing complaints about her treatment and alleged discrimination, Glasson claims her HR department took their time investigating her complaint, and didn’t really get too deep into it until Glasson hired an attorney to represent her. To make matters worse, she argues she was “never interviewed by HR before Google said it did not find her claims credible.” As a result, Glasson reached out to the EEOC and filed a complaint last year. Her case has since been transferred to the “EEOC’s investigation division, where the Seattle field office will take it on.”

So far Google has pushed back against the allegations of pregnancy discrimination, saying it “found no evidence of discrimination and that it didn’t make Glasson a manager due to insufficient headcount.”

When asked about the lawsuit, EEOC Spokeswoman Kimberly Smith-Brown said:

 “Under federal law, possible charges (complaints) made to the EEOC are strictly confidential, and we are prohibited from commenting on them, furnishing any information on them, or even confirming or denying the existence of such a charge.”

Google also chimed in and said it has “improved reporting systems for inappropriate conduct.” It added:

Reporting misconduct takes courage and we want to provide care and support to people who raise concerns. All instances of inappropriate conduct reported to us are investigated rigorously, and over the past year we have simplified how employees can raise concerns and provided more transparency into the investigations process at Google. We work to be extremely transparent about how we handle complaints and the action we take.”


Google faces a new investigation into whether it discriminated against a pregnant employee

Google hit with new federal investigation over pregnant employee who claims discrimination

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