More than 20 Activision Blizzard employees ‘exited’ following lawsuits

Name of Responsibility and Overwatch writer Activision Blizzard is vowing to create a “firm tradition the place all really feel protected and heard,” in line with a letter printed by Activision Blizzard company affairs government vice chairman Fran Townsend. The letter was reportedly circulated internally earlier than being published online.

Townsend stated greater than 20 individuals have “exited” Activision Blizzard following inner investigations following California’s sweeping Department of Fair Housing and Employment (DFEH) lawsuit in opposition to the online game firm. Present and former staff alleged that the World of Warcraft writer maintains a toxic workplace culture that’s hostile to ladies, who’re paid lower than males and topic to sexual harassment. Townsend stated “greater than 20 people” have been disciplined “in connection to varied resolved experiences” within the latest months.

Activision Blizzard has not responded to Polygon’s request for extra data relating to these exits and disciplinary motion.

Within the months for the reason that unique lawsuit, Activision Blizzard has been sued by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), its shareholders, and the National Labor Relations Board. The corporate can be being investigated by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for alleged violations associated to office discrimination and sexual harassment. Activision Blizzard settled with the EEOC in September for $18 million; the DFEH tried to intervene in that settlement, and now these two businesses are preventing. Forward of Tuesday’s letter from Townsend, Activision Blizzard filed paperwork within the DFEH case asking a choose to halt the lawsuit — primarily, Activision Blizzard is trying to get the case thrown out on account of a battle of curiosity between authorities attorneys, in line with The Verge.

Regardless of that submitting, Townsend stated in Tuesday’s letter that Activision Blizzard is “working tirelessly to make sure that, shifting ahead, this can be a place the place individuals are not solely heard, however empowered.”

To take action, Activision Blizzard stated it has ongoing investigations, and that experiences can proceed to be made anonymously. The corporate will add 19 staff to its Ethics and Compliance group, led by senior vice chairman Jen Brewer. Townsend additionally stated Activision Blizzard will “triple” its funding in coaching in opposition to harassment and different office issues.

Some present and former staff, on social media and in dialog with Polygon, stated they’re not satisfied by Townsend’s letter. That is due, partially, to Townsend’s preliminary response to the DFEH lawsuit; the Activision Blizzard exec and former homeland safety advisor below George W. Bush stated the lawsuit was “distorted and unfaithful,” in addition to “actually meritless and irresponsible.” At the moment, a bunch of Activision Blizzard staff banded collectively to call for her removal because the sponsor of the ABK (Activision Blizzard King) Worker Ladies’s Community.

Lots of of Activision Blizzard employees walked out of work following Townsend’s preliminary letter. 1000’s of present and former staff signed an open letter in help of the DFEH lawsuit. A number of executives and excessive profile staff exited the corporate within the following months, including Blizzard president J. Allen Brack.

https://www.polygon.com/22736378/activision-blizzard-fran-townsend-abk-lawsuits | Greater than 20 Activision Blizzard staff ‘exited’ following lawsuits

Aila Slisco

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