An engineer at Google who was fired for a memo assailing the company's diversity policies is considering legal action. However, he seemingly faces long odds of a successful case.
James Damore lost his job after authoring a 10-page essay that said women are not biologically fit for certain technology roles. Damore also warned against arbitrary social engineering of tech just to make it appealing to equal portions of both men and women. He claimed that efforts to hire more women via such methods are misguided and biased.
Mr. Damore told Reuters that he was exploring his options and said he had filed a charge with the National Labor Relations Board before he was fired. Another email revealed that he would likely be pursuing legal action.
The employment law gives employers broad discretion to fire at-will, for workers who do not have contracts, like those negotiated by unions, that create more stringent requirements to fire someone.
Google CEO Sundar Pinchai wrote an email in which he backed the rights of employees to express themselves but said Mr. Damore’s comments breached the company’s code of conduct and “cross the line by advancing harmful gender stereotypes in our workplace.
A professor and labour law expert at UC Hastings College of Law said that such reasoning should be a sufficient reason for Mr Damore’s firing.
Mr Damore claimed to have received support from a number of colleagues for his views. Some have also supported his right to hold such opinions even if they do not agree with them.
Julian Assange, the founder of Wikileaks, has said that he was offering Mr Damore a job, adding that "censorship is for losers".