Discrimination exists: Google pays 118 million to settle a collective complaint

Google has agreed to pay $118 million to settle a class action lawsuit accusing the group of discriminating against women in pay and rank in California, two law firms said the defendants.

The agreement covers approximately 15,500 employees who have worked in California since September 2013, details a statement released Friday evening by Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein and Altshuler Berzon.

The company also agreed to an analysis of its recruitment and compensation practices by third parties.

“After nearly five years of litigation, both parties have agreed that resolving the case, without any admission (of liability) or conclusion, is in everyone’s best interest, and we are very pleased to have reached this conclusion. agreement,” a Google spokesperson said in a message to AFP on Sunday.

The lawsuit was filed in 2017 in a San Francisco court by former Google employees who claimed the search engine paid women less than men in equivalent positions and that they were assigned to lower ranks than men. with equivalent experience and qualifications, because the company was based on their previous salaries.

According to the text of the agreement, made public by the lawyers, Google “denies all allegations in the complaint and holds that (the group) has been found to comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations at all times”.

The deal still needs to be approved by a judge.

“We are absolutely committed to paying, hiring and leveling all employees fairly and equitably,” the company spokesperson defined in his message. “If we find any differences in the pay offered, including between men and women, we are making upward adjustments to remove it before the new pay comes into effect, and we will continue to do so.”

The search engine had already agreed in 2021 to pay $ 3.8 million to the US Department of Labor following accusations of discrimination against women and Asians.

Most of this money was to be used to compensate 2,565 women employed by Google in engineering positions, as well as nearly 3,000 people, female candidates or candidates of Asian origin, who had not been chosen for such positions. .

Google then said that the discrimination had been detected during a routine internal analysis and that the company had agreed to pay this sum to correct the situation, while denying having broken the law.

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