NEW YORK and LOS ANGELES, Nov. 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- On Monday, Google announced it had fired four employees over what it called violations of policies around accessing and sharing internal documents and calendars.
Among those fired were two software engineers, Rebecca Rivers and Laurence Berland. Rivers and Berland were at the center of a rally held last Friday after they were suspended indefinitely. Rivers was put on leave after allegedly accessing documents not pertinent to her work, and Berland was suspended after he was accused of improperly accessing his colleagues' internal calendars.
Rivers says the official reason she was fired was due the documents, but a human resources representative claimed it was due to her involvement with a Customs and Border Protection petition outside of work. Both Rives and Berland claim the firings came after they raised objections internally about Google's work, Customs and Border Protection, but had not had access to documents. Google maintains the firings of Rivers, Berland and others was legitimate, and in line with policy.
Google has recently come under fire due to handling of sexual harassment, its treatment of contract employees, and its work with the Defense Department, federal border agencies and the Chinese government. After data and security leaks, Google has been trying to tighten the flow of information that employees can discuss. Weekly all hands meetings have now been cut down to monthly meetings, and issues that will be discussed are limited to products, rather than work culture or personnel matters.
Following the firings, Google sent a company-wide memo claiming the former employees had repeatedly searched for, looked through and distributed information outside the scope of their jobs, and that one of the employees had set up notifications detailing the work and locations of other employees without their knowledge and consent.
Carney Shegerian, the founder of Los Angeles-based employee rights law firm Shegerian & Associates, has weighed in on the situation.
"The way to improve employee communication practices is not terminate four of them and expect others to fall in line," he said.
About Shegerian & Associates:
Shegerian & Associates has won clients over $300 million in employment-based disputes and maintains a 98% success rate. We have offices in Los Angeles, San Diego, Riverside and New York.
Pace Public Relations
SOURCE Shegerian & Associates