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Sundar Pichai addresses Google’s sexual misconduct lawsuit settlement for first time to employees, saying in leaked email ‘We are not going back in time’ (GOOGL)


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Sundar Pichai addresses Google’s sexual misconduct lawsuit settlement for first time to employees, saying in leaked email ‘We are not going back in time’ (GOOGL)

Following news that Alphabet had settled a shareholder lawsuit over allegations that its board of directors mishandled sexual misconduct, CEO Sundar Pichai told employees the company should hold itself “to the highest possible standard.” “I hope these commitments will serve as a strong signal to all of you that we are not going back in…

  • Following news that Alphabet had settled a shareholder lawsuit over allegations that its board of directors mishandled sexual misconduct, CEO Sundar Pichai told employees the company should hold itself “to the highest possible standard.”
  • “I hope these commitments will serve as a strong signal to all of you that we are not going back in time,” the Google chief wrote in a memo to employees.
  • The settlement includes an end to mandatory private arbitration at all Alphabet companies and a $310 million commitment to diversity initiatives.
  • The memo marks Pichai’s first comments to employees about the settlement, a source told Business Insider.
  • Are you a Google insider with insight to share? You can contact this reporter securely using the encrypted messaging app Signal (+1-628-228-1836) or encrypted email (hslangley@protonmail.com) on a nonwork device.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

In an email sent to employees on Friday, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai addressed news that the company had settled a shareholder lawsuit over allegations that the company’s board mishandled sexual misconduct.

The settlement, which includes an end to mandatory private arbitration across all Alphabet companies and a $310 million commitment to diversity initiatives, came after Alphabet’s board of directors was sued over allegations that it shielded executives accused of sexual misconduct.

A lawsuit was filed last year following a bombshell New York Times report that said Google gave Andy Rubin a $90 million exit package after the Android exec was accused of sexual misconduct.

“It’s very important to me that we hold ourselves to the highest possible standard as a workplace on issues of misconduct, and provide care and support to people who report it,” Pichai wrote in the memo sent Friday.

This memo included the first comments Pichai made to employees about the settlement, which was announced Friday, a source confirmed to Business Insider.

Pichai will be one member of a new diversity, equity, and inclusion board being set up as a result of the settlement. He’ll be joined by several other company executives, as well as outside experts, including former US federal Judge Nancy Gertner, Google’s vice president of people operations announced in a blog post on Friday.

“I hope these commitments will serve as a strong signal to all of you that we are not going back in time,” Pichai told employees Friday.

The chief executive took an expanded role as CEO of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, last year and is guiding the company through an array of significant challenges, including a pandemic and the possibility of multiple pending antitrust lawsuits.

Here’s the memo in full:

Hi Googlers,

Please see the email Eileen sent and take the time to read what we’re announcing today.

It’s very important to me that we hold ourselves to the highest possible standard as a workplace on issues of misconduct, and provide care and support to people who report it. I’ve been working closely with our teams and our Board to ensure that we are doing this.

I hope these commitments will serve as a strong signal to all of you that we are not going back in time. I’m personally dedicated to doing the hard work ahead and building on the progress we’ve been making together to build a better Google for everyone. Thank you for that.

— Sundar

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