In a new letter, Activision Blizzard employees said CEO Bobby Kotick’s note about allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination in the workplace at the company “does not address critical elements that are at the heart of employee concerns.” Last week, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) filed a massive lawsuit against the company to expose the allegations.
The staff rejected the company’s initial response to the lawsuit, and in Wednesday’s response, the employees said they are pleased to see they have “convinced leadership to change the tone of their communications.” But workers point out that Kotick’s letter fails to address a number of key concerns, including ending forced arbitration for all employees and the need for greater pay transparency. We have published the full response of the employees at the end of this article.
Employees will walk out at 1:00 PM ET / 10:00 AM PT in response to the company’s handling of the allegations. Activision Blizzard’s leadership informed employees on Tuesday that they will not face any impact on attendance and will be given paid time off.
Here is the response from the employees:
On the night before our workers’ strike, Activision Blizzard’s leadership released a statement apologizing for their damaging reactions to last week’s DFEH lawsuit. While we’re pleased to see our collective votes — including an open letter with thousands of signatures from current employees — have convinced leadership to change the tone of their communications, this response fails to address critical elements that of workers’ concerns.
Activision Blizzard’s response did not address the following:
The end of forced arbitration for all employees.
Employee participation in overseeing recruitment and promotion policies.
The need for greater wage transparency to ensure equality.
Selection of third party employees to audit HR and other business processes.
Today’s strike will show that this is not a one-off event that our leaders can ignore. We will not return to silence; we will not be satisfied with the same processes that led us to this point.
This is the beginning of a sustainable movement in favor of better working conditions for all workers, especially women, especially women of color and transgender women, non-binary people and other marginalized groups.
We expect a prompt response and commitment to action from leadership on the points listed above, and look forward to maintaining a constructive dialogue about how we can build a better Activision Blizzard for all employees.
Today we stand up for change. Tomorrow and beyond we are the change.
Zoe Schiffer contributed reporting.