Microsoft Women filed 238 internal complaints regarding gender discrimination and sexual harassment in the last six years, 2010-2016, according to court filings which were made public on Monday. The figure was noted by plaintiffs suing Microsoft for systematically refusing to pay salary hikes or allowing promotions for women. The world’s largest software company denies having any such policies.
The lawsuit which was filed in Seattle federal court in 2015 is now attracting attention after a series of powerful men have been left fired or left from jobs in the media, entertainment, and politics for sexual misconduct. Plaintiffs’ lawyers ate planning to go ahead with a class action lawsuit, which would over 8000 women. More information about the software giant’s human resourced practices has been made public on Monday in legal filings which were submitted as a part of the process to the court.
Although the trial has not been scheduled yet, the two sides of exchanging documents are available to the public. Out of 118 gender discrimination complaints that were filed by women only one of them has been “founded” by the company. Attorneys for the women called the number of complaints “shocking” in the court findings and that the response by Microsoft’s team “lackluster,” reported Reuters.
Microsoft said that the plaintiffs could not base their claims of one example of promotion and pay where the Microsoft’s investigation team could’ve found a violation of company policy, but it did not. The United States Judge James Robart is yet to rule on the plaintiffs’ request for class-action status.
Microsoft also argues that the number of complaints that were submitted to the Human Resource by women must be kept discrete since making the outcomes public can stop employees from reporting any form of abuse in the future. However, a court-appointed official found the situation to be too far from a competitive or business harm to keep the information private.