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Google CEO Tells Employees: Workplace Not Suitable for Political Discussions

Sundar Pichai (Credits: Business Insider Africa)

In a memo addressed to Google employees, CEO Sundar Pichai reaffirmed the company’s commitment to its mission and emphasized that Google is a workplace, not a platform for political debates or personal agendas.

Pichai’s memo, spanning 1,200 words, outlined structural changes aimed at enhancing efficiency and execution within the company, but also touched upon recent events that led to the termination of 28 employees.

Specifically addressing the protests staged earlier in the week, Pichai emphasized the importance of maintaining a work environment where coworkers feel safe and respected.

Google’s CEO (Credits: Reddit)

He made it clear that disruptive behavior, attempts to use the company for personal agendas, or engaging in political debates within the workplace are not acceptable.

The protests, which occurred in multiple Google offices, were sparked by concerns over the company’s $1.2 billion cloud contract with Israel, with activists alleging that it supports the Israeli government’s actions in Gaza. Despite the company’s stance on the matter, the protests escalated to the point where nine employees were arrested.

Following the protests, Google’s vice president of Global Security, Chris Rackow, issued a memo warning employees about the consequences of violating company policies on conduct. The termination of 28 employees was justified on the grounds of their behavior being disruptive and in violation of multiple company policies, including those on harassment and workplace conduct.

Google CEO Pichai (Credits: Mint)

One of the fired employees, Emaan Haseem, expressed her lack of regret for participating in the protest, citing the importance of pushing for change within the company. Despite the termination, Haseem criticized Google for what she perceived as dishonesty in its communication with employees and the public.

Pichai’s message underscores the company’s commitment to maintaining a professional and respectful work environment, while also acknowledging the problems of addressing sensitive political issues within the workplace.

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