Google parent Alphabet Inc is accused of covering up sexual misconduct claims against two former executives over the last five years. Because of which, two shareholder lawsuits were filed this week– reading the board of the parent company has been intentionally suppressing the misconduct claims, Reuters reported.
The news agency contacted the company but the later declined to comment.
According to the report, the lawsuits, filed in California’s San Mateo County, seekto force the search engine giant to change its governance rules and oversight to prevent such misconducts in the future.
The suit, according to CNBC, reads: “The Directors’ wrongful conduct allowed the illegal conduct to proliferate and continue.”
“As such, members of the Alphabet’s Board were knowing and direct enablers of the sexual harassment and discrimination.” it reads.
The board members are also accused of employing contradictory standards:
“If you were a high‐level male executive at Google responsible for generating millions of dollars in revenue, Google would let you engage in sexual harassment. And if you get caught, Google would keep it quiet, let you resign, and pay you millions of dollars in severance,” the suit reads.
“On the other hand, if you were a low‐level employee at Google and were accused of sexual harassment or discrimination, you would be fired for cause with no severance benefits. In this way, Alphabet and the Board were able to maintain optics and superficial compliance with its code of conduct, internal rules, and laws regarding sexual harassment. By appearing to take decisive action against a significant number of low‐level employees, and by concealing the blatant and widespread sexual harassment by senior Google executives, the Board avoided a much bigger scandal.”
Google had fired 48 employees for misconduct over the past two years, Google CEO Sundar Pichai told employees in October last year.