Alphabet’s Google on Thursday announced that it is changing policies around sexual harassment. Last week, over 20,000 Google employees and contractors around the world staged a walkout over sexual misconduct reports in the company. Even more, Google reportedly gave a $90 million exit package to one of its top executive in 2014 after he was accused of sexual harassment.
In an email to employees, Google’s Chief Executive Office (CEO) Sundar Pichai said that they are updating rules, including introducing a drinking limit for staff.
“We recognize that we have not always gotten everything right in the past and we are sincerely sorry for that. It’s clear we need to make some changes,” wrote Pichai in that email.
Google will create a dedicated reporting site with live support for such cases. It will offer counseling to people who report assault or harassment. Employees will be given support to meet and discuss their complaints in person.
Pichai further added that Google “will provide more transparency on how we handle concerns. We’ll give better support and care to the people who raise them. And we will double down on our commitment to be a representative, equitable, and respectful workplace.”
Google would publicly release its harassment, discrimination and retaliation policies. These changes will be fully implemented by first quarter of 2019.
The statement also notes that Google will provide “more granularity” in internal reports about harassment. It plans to update and expand its mandatory sexual harassment training. Google will start keeping records of such trainings and will review employees’ performance on the basis of training.