Monday night, April Christina Curley, announced a diversity recruitment at Google On twitter That he was fired in September.
She started at Google in 2014, helping the company improve its relationship with historically black colleges and universities. Prior to taking the job, Curley tweeted that the company “has not hired an HBCU student in a technical role.”
Six years later, Curley tweeted that he had “brought in more than 300 Black and Brown students from HBCUs who were hired [engineering] Roles. “
This month marks Curley’s second public dispute with Google between the company’s leadership and black women, who have been celebrated for success in the tech sector. Earlier this month, one of Google’s top female executives, Timnit Gabru – a highly respected research scientist known for her advocacy to increase diversity in the tech industry – said she was also fired . The company’s head of research said that Gabru resigned.
Following Gabru’s farewell, who served as co-head of the company’s Ethical Artificial Intelligence team, he sent an email to colleagues, stating that the company forced him to withdraw a paper on ethical intelligence problems That included the artificial intelligence system used to understand humans. Language that includes Google’s search engine.
This time, Curley’s allegations about the company were even more widespread. Curley alleged on Twitter that during his time at Google he was denied many promotions, put on performance improvement schemes, reduced his compensation, excluded from meetings, leadership roles He was denied and harassed by managers, stating that his Baltimore apprentice was a disability he had to disclose to colleagues. Curley further alleged that he was once asked by another manager “who among my colleagues would sleep with me,” that Wrote on twitter.
Google declined repeated requests for comment on these allegations.
Curley’s announcement this week marks a year in which Google employees have spoken out about the company’s treatment of Black and Brown employees. In three weeks since Gabru Announced On Twitter that he was fired, more than 2,690 Google employees signed letters of support for him.
“Instead of being embraced by Google as an exceptionally talented and prolific contributor, Dr. Gabru has faced sensitivity, racism, gaslighting, research censorship and now a counter-firing,” the statement said.
An investigation by NBC News in May found that the company’s diversity, equity and inclusion programs had been curtailed, according to current and former employees, who separately stated that a clear-cut approach to avoid being biased against conservatives The effort was cut. Google denied that the response to conservative criticism was cut. But the investigation prompted an investigation by 10 members of Congress about how Google is working to cultivate diversity within its workforce.
In June, the Black Googler Network, an employee resource group, worked with thousands of employees to come up with a list of demands related to workforce representation, internal recognition, mental health, and enough time, said a Google employee who bet Spoke on anonymity for fear of being fired for speaking in public.
The employee said the network’s co-chairs held a meeting with Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai, Google’s parent company and other leaders on June 9 to present their demands.
“They all used to say, ‘We are committed to hiring at least a percentage (30) of the leaders by 2025,” the employee said in an interview.
The employee said the “underwater” commitments are just one response for black and brown employees seeking equity.
“This timid story really stings because we’ve seen what happens to black women at Google who push against the status quo and try to push for more equitable outcomes,” the employee said. “It is usually that they are forced to leave. Company, seeing people who were not fired but grieved so that they resign. I have seen the use of those tacts. I have also seen , ‘Oh this person is speaking. Get them out of the company.’ “
Google declined repeated requests for comment regarding these discussions.
Gabru’s email sent shortly before leaving the company broadened his frustration with Google’s efforts to create a more inclusive workspace. She said she found it “consistently demeaning” on Google. The company declined to comment, but Google’s head of research, Jeff Dean, pointed to an email to employees, published by the technology newspaper Platformer, in which he said Gabru resigned Had given.
After Gabru left the company in this month, members of Congress started questioning diversity recruitment. He drafted a letter that responded to how Google wants to improve its issues while retaining a diverse workforce.
“Full pause – if we don’t hold a seat at the POC table, we can’t stop the algorithmic bias at Innovative Tech,” Rape wrote. Yvette Clarke, DNY, who lectured on the letter. On twitter, Using an acronym for People of Color.
Google is not the only technology company to have faced serious allegations of internal racism this year. Pinterest was accused of racism by two ex-former policy executives, Ifyoma Ozoma and Erica Shimizu Banks, who left in late May and went public with their claims in June. At the time Pinterest told CNBC that the company had conducted an investigation and found that employees were treated fairly.
The technology industry has long been known to dominate white men, especially tech jobs. According to the company’s 2020 diversity report, at Google, black women represent only 0.7 percent of technical staff and black employees make up 2.4 percent of the total technical workforce. Facebook said that Black employees made up only 1.7 percent of its tech workforce.
After Curley shared his experience on Monday, students from historically black colleges and universities with whom he worked for years backed out.
“I can tell personally and professionally that April had an impact on my journey in CS [computer science] With her active presence on campus, the resources helped me get her, and the events organized for the students, ” wrote Briana Fugate on Twitter. Fugate is an engineer at Melchimp, and graduated from Spelman College in 2018.
Others working to uplift HBCU students expressed disappointment over Curley’s story as it quickly spread on social media on Monday night.
Nicole Pinson founded HBCU20x20 three years ago to connect black people in the HBCU community with good jobs and internship opportunities. The organization launched a partnership with Google in September, she said.
But Tinson and his team became wary of the company after finding out Gabru’s position. When he read Curley’s Twitter thread on Monday evening, Tinson decided to end the partnership between HBCU20x20 and Google.
“It’s really important for me to know that when we partner with a company – whether it’s a student looking for an internship or a professional looking for their next career – we want to know that they’re going somewhere Are where they will be appreciated, ”Tinson said.
“We want to know that they are going somewhere where some sort of culture has been established for inclusion where they can feel comfortable and feel part of the team. We’re looking exclusively with Google Is a culture that is not ready to be disrupted and accepted by everyone as they are, and which are. “
Experts say that what happened to Gabaru and Curley is a symptom of a larger problem of how black people are treated in the technology industry. Meredith Broussard, a professor of journalism at New York University who specializes in artificial intelligence research and data journalism, described Gabru as “one of the most talented AI ethics researchers in the world”.
“The fact that he was pushed out is terrible and it is brought up to solve these long-standing problems that Black women face inside big tech companies,” Brouser said. “Institutional sexism in large tech companies has long been an ongoing issue of systemic racism, everywhere in the world. And big technology really needs to recognize these issues. “