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Google contractors say the reporting process for sexual misconduct remains flawed

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Last week, thousands of Google employees stepped out of their offices, possibly the biggest collective protest by technicians in history. The demonstration, which included Google offices on several continents, was fueled by reports that the company offered lucrative exit packages to several top executives accused of sexual misconduct. The impressive solidarity of Google's workforce was the most important moment in the industry, where industry uptime was high.

The organizers of the "Women's Migration" demonstration called for a series of changes to create a more inclusive and safer environment. Their top demands include an improved sexual harassment and assault notification system that Google promised to address, at least in part, on Thursday. For thousands of contract workers signed by Google, Gizmodo reports that the sources say the process is particularly frustrating and confusing, preventing contractors from submitting complaints or otherwise raising concerns. And especially for contractors, it does not seem that Google has a plan to improve in the foreseeable future.

There must be only a clear course of action and some kind of peace, or the certainty that if you are a TVC, the status of your business The contract is not compromised when you report something.

On Thursday, CEO Sundar Pichai sent an email to all Google employees, outlining a series of changes that the company plans to release in response to the walkout and organizers. Requirements. These include the termination of compulsory arbitration for individual sexual harassment and harassment claims, an improved method of reporting misconduct and improvements related to compulsory sexual harassment training, and "more granularity in investigations and outcomes of sexual harassment". The company also held a city hall full-time Google staff on Thursday. Temporary workers, salespeople, and contractors were excluded from Pichai's email and were not even taken into the room during Google's All-Hands.

"I had to read it in the press and not directly from the CEO whose company I've been working for the past year," a contractor told Gizmodo on Thursday.

About half of Google's workforce is said to be made up of temporary workers , Salespersons or contract employees better known in the industry than TVCs, including individuals working on full-time projects, and service employees such as baristas, bus drivers and café workers, who are not officially Google employees and they do not the same benefits or job security as employees who have spoken with Gizmodo, and contractors state that they have a separate misconduct reporting mechanism that can remove Google's involvement altogether.

Two contractors, who currently work for Google, talked to Gizmodo about the bed Anonymity for fear of retaliation The process is currently confusing and unfair to a workforce that is more susceptible to being a full-time Google. None of the contractors claimed that he had or should have reported sexual misconduct, but both expressed frustration over the current reporting process, which was difficult to navigate. They also said that they fear that reporting misconduct could negatively affect their employment status, even though the company has not confirmed their retaliation.

One contractor said that his impression of Google was not an obvious neglect or wrong orientation. Instead, they said they would continue to maintain a system that could be a roadblock for temporary workers.

"I think Google would say …" We want to protect women, we want to protect people, the reporting of sexual harassment would not endanger you, "they said, adding that it's common for contractors to have someone in theirs Knowing a team whose contract has been shortened or not extended without a reason "There are only a few disagreements regarding what Google says and what Google does, especially regarding TVC issues."

In response to Last month's New York Times article describing in detail how Google has allegedly withheld sexual executions against multiple executives, CEO Sundar Pichai sent an email to all Google employees with the subject line "Reporting and Investigating." Harassment. "It contained a few lines that explained how employees can find out more about how to use internal tools n.

One contractor told Gizmodo that TVCs have a separate anonymous web portal for workplace concerns. "There are a few things to click on, it is not very clear what should be clicked first," said the portal's contractor. "I do not have an overview of where this happens and how things develop."

According to screenshots Gizmodo received from Google's Harassment Harassment Support page, those concerned should first voice their concerns to the recruitment agency, not to Google itself. If an incident is another TVC, the page explains that Google informs the contractor's employer. If it's a Google employee, Google states that "the responsible team will see to it that the matter is resolved and that you will contact you when the process is complete."

This page also contains contact information for an anonymous helpline and a section to make sure that individuals do not receive retaliation because of the concern. "This means that Google will not take any action that would adversely affect anyone merely for reporting or participating in an investigation into a possible violation of our Code of Conduct, the Google Policy, or the law," it states.

An e-mail from a contractor's Gizmodo-sourced employment agency complies with Google's policy. It says TVC should not turn to their manager on Google if they have to file an application, and instead contact an HR HR email from the agency. Google works with various recruitment agencies. One contractor said that the way TVCs are treated within the company feels "very inconsistent".

"There must be only a clear course of action and some kind of peace or security If you are a TVC, the status of your contract is not jeopardized when you report something.

They're our people, not Google.

Crowdstaffing representative, one of the recruiting agents That works with Google, Gizmodo said it has its own employee handbook and policies and is the contractor's main contact person, including The representative said that at some point in the complaint process they could loop in a customer like Google, but this would happen "at a later date" after they had carried out their own analysis.

"That is just a way to make sure that we are the ones to provide support, "the representative said. "They are our employees, not Google."

The spokesperson for the agency found that Crowdstaffing employed more than 1,000 people at Google in recent years, and while the contractor addressed various issues on his behalf, such as Pay the agency had "never had a case of sexual harassment . "

"We may have had one or two situations in which we had workers who might only get along with certain team members in the organization," the representative said. I add that this "not to say [sexual misconduct complaints] does not exist, but in my view it was a pretty good situation there."

Google's organizers explicitly called for "a clear, consistent, globally inclusive process for reporting sexual misconduct safely and anonymously," including TVCs, and the confusing, incoherent complaint-handling process hardly inspires confidence in a system that does Protecting and Securing a Company's Workers, said a contractor, especially his most vulnerable company.

"There was no communication about TVC's reporting process from Sundar's emails, anything from my manager or anything in Team meetings, "said one contractor to Gizmodo.

Asked for a comment on whether the policies introduced on Thursday apply to TVCs, Google Gizmodo referred to a quote from Internal Announcement of November 8, claiming that Google keeps the recruitment agencies it works with , It says:

T-V-Cs are an important part of our extended community. We investigate any matter in which a T-V-C files a complaint against an employee and require that suppliers do so for the complaints against T-V-C and report any complaints. In addition, we have recently broadened the scope of our Supplier Code of Conduct and required Google's suppliers to "demonstrate a commitment to identify, measure and improve a culture of diversity and inclusion through all aspects of workplace management." This contractual agreement includes also responsible for maintaining a program that allows workers to report complaints anonymously and without fear of retaliation, unless prohibited by law. We will periodically review our suppliers for compliance. For providers using Google's TV-Cs, we will consider the results of these reviews to determine if our supplier relationships should continue.

In response to Pichai's announcement on Thursday, Google would completely improve the process of reporting sexual harassment-time employees who walkout organizers said the steps were promising, but did not meet all of their demands. They also highlighted the need to improve the process for TVCs in a post-media release stating that TVCs "have significant roles across the enterprise, but enjoy few of the benefits of using technology companies. They are also mostly people with color, immigrants and people from the working class. "

Stephanie Parker, policy specialist at Google and fellow campaigner, said in the post:" We demand a truly just culture, and Google's leadership can achieve that by including employee representation on the board and contracting workers, our most vulnerable Workers, many of whom are black and brown women, enjoy full rights and protection. [

While both contractors agree they agree with the numerous demands of the departure tour operators, they say that some full-time employees may not fully understand how persistent their positions are. One contractor said that during the New York dispute, they overheard other contractors – easily recognized by their red badges – and pointed out that their job insecurity and how it affects their motivation to report misconduct. It was really addressed during the dispute or in the press.

"I feel that they have covered the needs," one contractor said, adding that "a clear line, as contractors could raise workplace concerns, is not nice". to have is a must.

Do you have information about Google's handling of misconduct and workplace concerns? You can send me an email to melanie.ehrenkranz@gizmodo.com. You can also contact us anonymously via SecureDrop.

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