Google rewrites sexual harassment policy after staff protests

Google CEO announces new action plan following Andy Rubin fiasco

"We recognize that we have not always gotten everything right in the past and we are sincerely sorry for that".

Notably, Google also said that "going forward, all leaders at the company-Directors, VPs and SVPs-will be expected to create teams, events, offsites and environments in which excessive alcohol consumption is strongly discouraged".

Last week, Google employees at offices around the world staged a walkout over the treatment of women at the company after sexual misconduct claims were made against several senior figures.

Among the measures announced are the introduction of optional arbitration for individual sexual harassment and sexual assault claims. "It's clear we need to make some changes".

Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in a memo sent to employees on Thursday that the company will revise its sexual harassment policy after last week's mass walkout by workers, who were protesting what they said was the tech giant's mishandling of sexual misconduct allegations against executives.

Further, Google says it will implement an Investigations Practice Guide that will outline how investigations will be handled and what employees can expect from the process.

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Pichai also said Google will provide more details around sexual harassment investigations and outcomes, as well as improving processes used to handle such concerns, including the ability for its employees to be accompanied by a support person. We'll give better support and care to the people who raise them.

"We will update and expand our mandatory sexual harassment training", Pichai said.

According to the Times' report, Android creator Andy Rubin was accused by a worker of having coerced her to perform oral sex on him in a hotel room in 2013. That's happening externally, with increased scrutiny by regulators and politicians, and internally with reports and rising complaints about Google's permissive culture when it comes to executive conduct and relationships with co-workers.

But the Tech Workers Coalition, which backed last week's action, said the measures did not go almost far enough, particularly where it related to contractors who worked with the firm.

Most notably, it did not comment on calls for Google's board to have an employee representative, and for the company's chief diversity officer to report directly to the chief executive.

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