You might remember the name James Damore, the former senior software engineer at Google who was fired last August for writing a 10-page manifesto titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber.” At the time of his dismissal, Damore said he was “exploring legal remedies.” Now, he is suing his ex-employer for allegedly discriminating against white, conservative males whose views contrast those of Google execs.
Damore’s document brought controversy for slamming Google’s efforts to hire more than just white men, and for claiming the low number of women in the tech industry was a matter of biology. He added that employees with conservative leanings have to stay in the closet to avoid discrimination.
CEO Sundar Pichai said parts of the memo “violate our Code of Conduct and cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace.” Damore was fired for “perpetuating gender stereotypes.”
Harvard grad Damore is joined by another former Google engineer, David Gudeman, in the 161-page suit. Gudeman was reportedly fired from the company in 2016 after comments he made allegedly linking a Muslim colleague to terrorism. The lawsuit claims the colleague said the FBI was targeting him, and that Gudeman suggested the agency could have “found something interesting” following his visit to Pakistan.
Filed by Dhillon Law Group, the suit looks to represent all Google employees who’ve been discriminated against due to their “perceived conservative political views by Google,” “their male gender by Google,” and “due to their Caucasian race by Google.”
“Google employees who expressed views deviating from the majority view at Google on political subjects raised in the workplace and relevant to Google’s employment policies and its business, such as ‘diversity’ hiring policies, ‘bias sensitivity,’ or ‘social justice,’ were/are singled out, mistreated, and systematically punished and terminated from Google, in violation of their legal rights,” the lawsuit claims. “Damore, Gudeman, and other class members were ostracized, belittled, and punished for their heterodox political views, and for the added sin of their birth circumstances of being Caucasians and/or males.”
The filing claims Google hired women and minorities in order to fulfil illegal hiring quotas, and that the company was highly critical of any business managers who failed to meet these quotas. It’s also alleged the “presence of Caucasians and males was mocked with ‘boos’ during company-wide weekly meetings.”
The lawsuit is seeking compensation against Google and an injunction against the company for its alleged discrimination.
“We look forward to defending against Mr. Damore’s lawsuit in court,” a Google spokesperson said.