Google will make payment of over $3.8 million to more than 5,500 current employees and job applicants affected by alleged systematic pay and hiring discrimination, the US Department of Labor announced on Monday.
Google will hand over $1,353,052 in back pay and interest to 2,565 female engineers as part of the settlement.
Google will also pay $1,232,000 in back pay and interest to 1,757 female engineering applicants and 1,219 Asian engineering applicants for “engineering positions not hired.”
“Pay discrimination remains a systemic problem. Employers must conduct regular pay equity audits to ensure that their compensation systems promote equal opportunity,” said Jenny R. Yang, director of the office of federal contract compliance programs.
During a routine compliance evaluation, the department has identified pay disparities affecting female employees in software engineering positions at Google facilities in Mountain View, and in Seattle and Kirkland, Washington.
The agency also identified hiring rate differences that disadvantaged female and Asian applicants for software engineering positions at Google’s locations in San Francisco and Sunnyvale, and in Kirkland.
Google has agreed to enhance future compliance proactively and review its current policies, procedures and practices related to hiring, compensation; conduct analyses; and take corrective action to ensure non-discrimination.
In 2018, more than 20,000 Google employees walked out of work to protest the company’s handling of sexual harassment allegations.
Google workers across the world have formed a global union alliance called Alpha Global in a bid to hold Alphabet accountable on issues like inequality, gender discrimination and workplace harassment.
Alpha Global comprised of 13 different unions representing workers in 10 countries, including the US, the UK and Switzerland.