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Google Employees Tell CEO: ‘Don’t Be Evil’

Over 1,400 employees at Google parent company Alphabet have signed a petition calling for a number of systemic changes to the company, after the giant announced it was cutting 12,000 roles.

An open letter addressed to Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai outlines the following series of demands:

1) Freeze all new hires during the layoff process. First ask for voluntary redundancies and voluntary working time reduction before compulsory layoffs. Allow for employee ‘swaps’ to further avoid compulsory redundancies.

2) Grant priority rehire to any Alphabet employees that have been recently laid off. Prioritize internal transfer options, prioritized access to jobs without the need to re-interview and agree to a fair severance package.

3) Protect our co-workers from countries with active conflicts or humanitarian crises (such as Ukraine, Russia, etc). Do not terminate employment when it would adversely affect visas, which could require workers to return to unsafe or unstable countries. Provide extra support to these and workers at risk of residence permit loss: help with job searches—internal and external—and provide adequate gardening leave.

4) Respect scheduled leaves (Maternity, Baby Bonding, Carer’s and Bereavement) and do not give notice until the leave is finished. Workers given notice will be notified in-person and will be given the opportunity to say good-bye to their coworkers.

5) Ensure there will be no discriminatory effects based on sex, gender identity, gender expression, age, sexual orientation, racial or ethnic identity, caste, veteran status, religion, and disability.

The letter was organised by workers represented by the Alphabet Workers Union, United Tech and Allied Workers and UNI Global.

“The impacts of Alphabet’s decision to reduce its workforce are global,” the letter said.

“Nowhere have workers’ voices adequately been considered, and we know that as workers we are stronger together than alone.

“Our company has long touted its commitment to doing right by its users and workers, and these commitments will show Alphabet adhering to the final line of its Code of Conduct: Don’t Be Evil.”

Pichai is yet to publicly respond to the demands.

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