La Oferta

October 2, 2023

Google fires employee who questioned women’s suitability for tech jobs

New York, Aug 8 (EFE).- Google has fired a software engineer who sent a controversial internal memo saying that men’s preponderance in tech jobs and leadership positions was partly due to biological causes and questioning company’s efforts to increase diversity.

James Damore confirmed in an e-mail to Bloomberg that he had been fired from Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc., for “perpetuating gender stereotypes.”

In the internal memo, titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber,” the now ex-employee said he valued diversity and inclusion and did not deny that sexism exists.

However, he states that “the distribution of preferences and abilities of men and women differ in part due to biological causes and … these differences may explain why we don’t see equal representation of women in tech and leadership.”

Among these differences, Damore pointed to biologically based personality traits that may make women more suitable to people-oriented positions than tech jobs like coding.

He also said the company’s culture made it difficult to discuss these issues.

“Only facts and reason can shed light on these biases, but when it comes to diversity and inclusion, Google’s left bias has created a politically correct monoculture that maintains its hold by shaming dissenters into silence,” the memo said.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai wrote in an e-mail to company staff that the memo violated the company’s code of conduct and crossed the line by “advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace.”

Pichai said he had cut his vacation plans short over the memo, which prompted a statement from Danielle Brown, Google’s vice president of diversity, integrity and governance.

Brown acknowledged that fostering a culture in which people with alternative views feel at liberty to share their opinions was “part of building an open, inclusive environment.”

“But that discourse needs to work alongside the principles of equal employment found in our Code of Conduct, policies, and anti-discrimination laws,” she added.

Google says 31 percent of its employees are women, a proportion that falls to 20 percent and 25 percent in the case of technology and leadership positions, respectively.