“We’re deeply aware of the importance of this issue. We work to support and protect people who report concerns, thoroughly investigate all claims and take firm actions against substantiated allegations,” a spokesperson for Google said.
The petition comes after Emi Nietfeld, a former Google engineer, alleged Thursday in the New York Times that the company let her harasser continue sitting next to her even after verifying her complaint and punishing him. Nietfeld is writing a book about her experience at the company.
In 2018, a New York Times article detailed how Google had paid a former top executive, Andy Rubin, $90 million as part of a severance package after he was accused of sexually harassing employees. Google workers protested, with 20,000 walking out of their offices and demanding more transparency around the company’s handling of complaints.
In response, Google agreed to stop forcing workers to settle sexual harassment claims through private arbitration, a practice common among corporations.
More recently, Google has come under fire for how it treats people of color who work at the company. In December, it fired Timnit Gebru, one of the highest-profile Black women working in the field of artificial intelligence, after she wrote a paper describing the potential for bias in some of Google’s cutting-edge AI algorithms.
An earlier version of this article incorrectly referred to a former Google engineer as Eli Nietfeld. Her name is Emi.