You might be familiar with Activision Blizzard – the creator of World of Warcraft and Call of Duty. The company is making headlines again for labor violations. But just a few short months ago, female employees came forward to report a company culture that tormented women. According to Forbes, the lawsuit alleges “banter of sexual encounters,” open conversations about women’s bodies, and jokes about rape.
The state filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles County Superior Court after a two-year investigation into their company. Gender discrimination, wage violations and sexual harassment incidents are among a long list of offenses. The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) has evidence of women reporting unwanted sexual advances, groping and wage discrepancies throughout the business.
As an employee, you expect that the environment you work in is safe. That upper management will ensure everyone engages in acceptable and appropriate behavior. If not, it might be time to consider when to contact a lawyer for gender discrimination before conditions worsen.
That was not the case for the majority of women at Blizzard. Sources report President J. Allen Brack had sent an email to employees about the lawsuit – calling their actions unacceptable. In contrast, the lawsuit maps out a long history of concerning behavior from getting drunk in the office to crawling around cubicles and inappropriately interacting with female employees. It was welcomed, celebrated, and allowed.
It caused enough emotional distress that one of the women committed suicide following a sexual relationship with her supervisor. The lawsuit details she had been suffering harassment at work in addition to an incident of male co-workers sharing personal photos of her across the office. HR did very little despite the number of complaints. A Los Angeles workplace lawyer would consider this as a failure to act and hold the harassers accountable.
Blizzard only employs a small percentage of women. According to Forbes, many of them were paid less, promoted less, and hired based on their looks. Although the company has dismissed the allegations, the DFEH will continue to monitor the business.