Microsoft Women Filed 238 Discrimination And Harassment Complaints: Court Documents

James Marshall
March 13, 2018

Of these, 108 were of sexual harassment, 119 of gender discrimination, eight of retaliation and three of pregnancy discrimination. The company had about 74,000 USA employees at the end of past year. This post highlighted work environment in only one tech company in the Silicon Valley.

Some significant numbers have popped up in the on-going gender discrimination lawsuit against Microsoft. They allege Microsoft "systematically" denied "pay raises or promotions to women", Reuters reported. But Microsoft refused that it has any such policy that encourages such behavior. If the lawsuit is allowed to proceed, it could cover more than 8,000 women. Along with the number of complaints filed, human resource practices were released publicly in a legal filling submitted on Monday.

The plaintiffs claimed Microsoft "does not properly investigate or redress" such complaints, and note only one of the gender discrimination complaints was "founded".

Attorneys for the women called the number of complaints "shocking" in the court filings and the response by Microsoft's investigations team "lackluster". Moreover, many complaints have been kept private by companies. So, it is unclear how many actual complaints have been filed and how it compares with competitors of Microsoft.

US District Judge James Robart has yet to rule on the plaintiff's request for the class action status.

Microsoft said in court filings that the plaintiffs did not identify practices that impact enough employees to warrant a class action and that it spends more than $55 million per year to promote diversity and inclusion.

In the latest document, which is a motion to bring the case as a class action, the plaintiffs claimed Microsoft's investigations team is "notorious... for "rubber-stamping" management", while employees have "little faith" in investigations.

A Reuters review of federal court cases filed between 2006 and 2016 revealed hundreds containing sexual harassment allegations where companies used common civil litigation tactics to keep potentially damning information under wraps.

Furthermore, the plaintiffs alleged there isn't a monitor for repeat offenders or retaliation against the complainant, and Redmond doesn't mandate training in discrimination, anti-harassment or complaint handling. However, this behavior still pervades for personal gains. Strict measures need to be taken to stop such incidents from happening in the future.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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