The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing found that the company has been discriminating against female employees in terms and conditions of employment such as compensation, assignment, promotion, and termination.
At least 50 Blizzard employees are planning to stage a walkout on July 18 in protest over the company’s handling of discrimination and their current sexual harassment suit.
Less than a week after the state of California filed a lawsuit against the video game giant Activision Blizzard Inc., employees call for work stoppage and other demands.
After a two-year investigation, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing found that the company has been discriminating against female employees in terms and conditions of employment such as compensation, assignment, promotion, and termination.
The allegations also include female employees being subjected to a “pervasive frat boy workplace culture” and delegating responsibilities, engaging in sexual banter, and openly joking about rape.
The suit also points to a female Activision employee who took her own life while on a company trip with her male supervisor.
In response, a spokesperson for Activision Blizzard issued a statement that reads, “There is no place in our company or industry, or any industry, for sexual misconduct or harassment of any kind.
The DFEH includes distorted, and in many cases false, descriptions of Blizzard’s past. The picture the DFEH paints is not the Blizzard workplace of today.”
However, more than 1,500 current and former employees condemn the company leadership in an open letter calling their response “abhorrent and insulting.”
"Given last week’s statements from Activision Blizzard, Inc…., we believe that our values as employees are not being accurately reflected in the words and actions of our leadership."
The walkout will be held at the main gate of the Blizzard campus from 10 am until 2 pm PT on July 28. People working from home have been encouraged to participate and share the #ActiBlizzWalkout hashtag.
On their own, players have pledged support for the employees and will not play any of the games from Blizzard during the walkout.
Games and IPs under Blizzard include Call of Duty, Doom, World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, Overwatch, Diablo, and Candy Crush Saga.
Tags: #Blizzard, #videogamedeveloper, #sexualharassment