Former Google engineer James Damore, known for circulating a controversial diversity memo that led to his firing at Google in August of previous year, is now suing Google for discrimination in a lawsuit that aims to represent anyone working for Google who believes they have faced discrimination at the company on account of their "perceived conservative political views", "their male gender", or "their Caucasian race". The memo in which he criticized the company's hiring practices, and claimed that disparities between men and women in the technology industry were at least partially due to behavioral differences between those genders due to biology, led to his firing from the company in August.
James Damore, who was sacked in August for internally circulating a manifesto that argued Google's gender pay gap was the result of genetic inferiority, said in a lawsuit filed in Santa Clara Superior Court that the search giant "singled out, mistreated, and systemically punished and terminated" employees that deviated from the company's view on diversity.
The lawsuit, which was filed on Monday and seeks class action status, also claims that Google uses "illegal hiring quotas" to employ a certain percentage of women and minorities.More news: Meltdown, Specter bugs: Apple iPhones, ipad, Macs at risk
The plaintiffs and their attorneys say Google "singled out, mistreated and systematically punished and terminated" employees who disagreed with the majority view about "diversity", "bias sensitivity" and "social justice".
Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc., didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.
However, Pichai defended the author's right to criticize Google training, workplace ideology and whether programs promoting workplace diversity are adequately open to all.